Thursday, December 28, 2017

Strategies for Updating Your Kitchen: Part 3

The Contractor

After setting our budget,  I contacted Dave Magown (619)820-7732 whom I had met at our local Santee Chamber of Commerce several years prior to this.  He had worked at Home Depot in kitchen remodeling design prior to opening his own business for a number of years.  Prior to hiring Dave, I checked his Contractor's License just to make sure that there hadn't been any issues on his contractor's license.

Referrals from friends and family are a good source for  Remodel Contractors.  But always check the contractor license website for any issues.  The license insures that they are accountable and liable.  Also make sure that they carry liability and worker's comp insurance.

Then we began the process of designing the kitchen.  Dave met with us at our home to discuss how we wanted the kitchen to be laid out.

Then we met at his show room to choose cabinets and counter tops.  Once we had decided on what we were putting in, then we met at our house to go over the process and time frames, included in the contract.  Time frames are very important, especially when near a holiday.  On average remodels take 4-10 weeks.    Also included in the contract was the total cost, broken down into 5 payments planned  throughout the process. 

Once we had a basic floor plan, then we needed to pick out appliances, sink, and faucets to replace the dead dishwasher, leaking refrigerator
and faucet. The measurements for all of these items were necessary to move forward.

Once the cabinets were near completion, the time had come to begin demolition.  Once we started, it was important to know what time the workers plan to show up and leave.  The demolition and cabinet crew would show up consistently at 8am and the flooring workers at 9:30am.  Good to know for your schedule.  Stress that it is important that if they are NOT going to show up, that they would let you know the day before.  That way you can plan your day.

While your kitchen is being updated, you need to plan on where you will set up a temporary kitchen, i.e. in your garage, another room or on your patio, somewhere where you have water and ample electricity.

Also make a plan for your pets.  Introduce them to the workers and help them stay calm through the loud banging and noises and temporary displacement.

Then let the chaos begin.

Written by Virginia Hall
Keller Williams Realty

Monday, December 11, 2017

Strategies for Remodeling Your Kitchen: Part 2

Now that I knew it was time for a Kitchen Remodel, as established in Part 1, the next step is to establish  a budget.


As a realtor, I have seen many updated kitchen and know the value of it when selling a home.  This is often the center of the home and people highly value updated kitchens and bathrooms.  But you need to consider your budget.

According to  Cost-vs-Value kitchen remodels can cost anywhere from $23,695 to $69,723 depending on the amount of work needed.   However, again if you are moving in the near future you will want to keep in mind that a minor kitchen remodel nets almost 96% of the cost and a major kitchen remodel only nets 75.1% of what was spent.   On the other hand, if you plan to remain in your home and enjoy the updates for a while, then you can add those special personal touches that can add up.  Otherwise, you want to research options for updating without gutting the kitchen, such as refacing cabinet doors, replacing only counter tops, removing ceiling mounted cabinets, paint versus expensive back splashes, reusing matching appliances that are only a few years old versus new, etc.  This is when a realtor and/or a kitchen contractor can help advise you.

One thing to keep in mind for your budget is to add 20% for additional change orders.  As the contractor begins to peel away things, your plans may change.   You may find that you need to add an electrical plug, add a gas line behind a wall, replace recessed lighting, etc.   Best to project extra these potential extra costs in the budget, so you don't find yourself short and unable to do the extra things you needed done while the opportunity presents itself.

The contractor will expect about 25%-30% upfront to buy materials and as the job progresses, they will expect partial payments and then a final payment at the end.  This should all be outlined in the contract.

Written by Virginia Hall
Keller Williams Realty