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Valued Contributor
Posts: 622
Registered: ‎02-16-2014

Re: New kitchen renovation question

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libby's folly
Honored Contributor
Posts: 14,000
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: New kitchen renovation question

My biggest error was not having HGTV on our old cable system 10 years ago.  I was totally unaware of all the new finishes in flooring, counters and cabinets.  We had a friend of ours draw up blueprints for our log cabin, it turned out to be way too small.  So our contractor then drew out floor plan on a lega pad, and I said "build it."  The only thing I'm really unappy with is the Formica.  Shortly after it was installed we stayed at a motel and there was that Formica in the bathroom.  I'll never forget that.   Knowing what I do now I would have opted for granite or quartz.  

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 5,902
Registered: ‎03-12-2010

Re: New kitchen renovation question

I have done two kitchen renovations in the past 12 years. One a full gut, the most recent was more cosmetic. I was the general contractor on both jobs because I wanted to really manage the budget without sacrificing quality. For Kitchen #1 I hired someone to do the demolition,installations, new ceiling and lighting. Used his in house people. He had recently done my full bath reno. I was pleased with that job and he really wanted to do my kitchen as well, and worked hard to get my return business, which pleased me.

I worked with a second person to order the cherry cabinets I wanted at the price I wanted to pay. He put me in touch with someone for the granite  counter tops, who showed me 4 choices that were in my budget, one of which was a good match. That same man also put me in touch with someone at an appliance retailer who gave me the discount to the trade, well above the discount I would have received walking into one of their stores.I purchased the laminate floor from Home Depot; contractor #1 installed it. I purchased the backsplash tile which his guy installed as well. I hired the painter. In the end I was completely satisfied with everything but the time line, especially from gut to start, as shipment of cabinets messed up the schedule.

 

Recent reno: sourced the tile, which turned me on to a source for the countertops and tile installer. Bought the sink, cabinet hardware and range hood online (build dot com), faucet at Lowe's. Hired the electrical business to remove old fixtures and add LED recessed lighting.  They did a lot of additional lighting throughout the house as well. Kept the floor and appliances. Also shopped around for the 3 cabinets that were replaced. Kept appliances and floor, bought new blinds (recycled the old to the bedroom) and hired a painter to do the cabinets and walls (ceiling was done earlier after the lighting install). All hires were made after getting input and prices from other sources and suppliers. Tremendous variety of costs for the same items and services! In the end I was on budget for all but the backsplash tile, which I totally fell in love with and did not source elsewhere. That was a mistake, but a beautiful splurge nonetheless.

 

I guess I know what I want and do not trust a designer or anyone else with my vision or my budget. That may be wrong, as I know designers can often get good discounts, but I have used designers on two previous occasions and both times it was a waste of my time and money.

 

Accept going in that something will not go as planned. Add 10-20% to the budget up front for unexpected expenses, especially in an older home. Hire a person or people who have great communication skills along with their ability to do superior work. Communication breakdowns can kill a job and budget fast!

 

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 6,504
Registered: ‎05-22-2014

Re: New kitchen renovation question

I guess you could say we have done our share of renovations in our home.

Kitchen, adjoining laundry room and pantry, downstairs half bath, two full baths upstairs.  We worked with one company, their employees, and a few subcontractors.  

 

Take your time with all your decisions.  Look at all samples in the room they will be installed.  The designer from this company was wonderful, and we followed some of his suggestions.  We have an older colonial, and we made the best of our room sizes.  We especially love the two door, wooden frame and glass cabinet to the left of our new over-the-sink crank out window.  We choose “seeded” glass for the panes, and it has interior lighting.  We also chose mottled beige tiles, placed on diagonals for a backsplash, along with granite for the kitchen.  The bathrooms are all different finishes on vanities and countertops.  Our kitchen cabinets are birch, a lighter wood with a very nice grain.  Same with laundry room/pantry.

 

I won’t lie and tell you it was great fun.  Our house was upside down for a long time and no matter how workmen tried, was there ever dust!  At the end of the day, we are happy with the results!  It was worth it.

 

On a funny note, our DD and DSIL just bought a new home.  I love their present house, but they wanted something bigger.  The kitchen in the new place has cabinets just like ours, and the granite is very similar.  Guess it runs in the family.

 

Good luck to you, and I know from pictures of your home you have very good taste.  Once it is done, you will be so happy!

Honored Contributor
Posts: 17,491
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: New kitchen renovation question

Mine was extremely low tech.

 

It was pencil drawings on a paper, hand written notes on the contract document because we had a lot of "TBD" in there to confirm colors and sizes.

 

 

===================================
QVC Shopper - 1993

# IAMTEAMWEN
Honored Contributor
Posts: 17,491
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: New kitchen renovation question


@Mominohio wrote:

@hayseed00 wrote:

@Mominohio  we had a company that specializes in kitchens do ours.  The designer came to our home and then we went to the store and she showed us a design she had in mind that she did on her computer, we also gave her our input on what we wanted. They had cupboards galore and counter material of all types to pick from.  In my opinion the most important aspects are to tell the contractor your ideas, and the cost along with his references.  The company we had contracts all their work out and I was glad my husband knows quite a lot about how a build should be because there was quite a few times he had to call the contractors out for doing something on the cheep, or just plain wrong.  I love my kitchen and the beautiful cupbords amd counter space, but it was sure stressful at the time of the remodel.


 

@hayseed00 

 

One of my goals, was to find a place that does not contract out any of the work. And this particular company claims they do not. In fact, I asked about painting the walls, and they don't do that. I'm not happy about it, but at least I know up front they aren't contracting out to whomever they can get, and making it seem like it is their work. 

 

I want as much of a full service contractor as I can get for this job. I want to be able to go back to one entity if there are issues, and not have this one blaming that one, and getting a big run around. 

 

My husband knows a little bit about most everything, so I'm hoping he will notice and be able to monitor what goes on to some degree too. I can't imagine just letting them go at it, with no scrutiny! LOL


 

I found one company that didn't outsource and had a project manager, but their proposal was almost twice my lowest proposal, so I didn't go with them.

 

The company I did go with told me they didn't outsource, but they did.  I checked reviews everywhere and many people stated they loved that they didn't outsource.  So either their project was small or they didn't notice all the names on the trucks that came in (or listen to the conversations while they were talking).

 

It was clear the companies they used were their regular companies but they were all independent contractors.

===================================
QVC Shopper - 1993

# IAMTEAMWEN
Honored Contributor
Posts: 17,491
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: New kitchen renovation question

Re dust

 

I did this in October-December and didn't turn the heat/ac on during the day when they were working.  I bought several high density filters for my HVAC to get as much of the fine dust as possible filtered out.

 

It took a few months before all the dust settled and I wasn't dusting the tops of my ceiling fans every other day.

===================================
QVC Shopper - 1993

# IAMTEAMWEN
Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,537
Registered: ‎03-15-2010

Re: New kitchen renovation question

When we were looking to have a Master Bath remodel several years back we went to one group that had the "high tech" options of showing it all put together like they do on HGTV as my DH is not good at visualing. things. 

That group's bid was priced at about $22,000 more than anyone else.  I guess tech is expensive.

We decided it was easier to sell the house...................

Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,578
Registered: ‎07-20-2017

Re: New kitchen renovation question

We did our own drawings.....both of us have experience with design and didn't have any high tech assistance.

 

We also did our own renovation. I would truly suggest not viewing too much at one time as it gets really confusing. Trust yourself....you already know what you want and need.

 

Lots of luck.....I know this will be an exciting adventure.