Tips on expanding a kitchen for open living


Thinking of opening up a dark confined kitchen to the rest of a dining or living area? Here are some helpful tips to consider.

1. First, establish a budget. A kitchen or bath remodel can hold unexpected surprises, so plan accordingly.

2.  Consult your contractor to find out if the wall you are considering to move is load-bearing or not. If it is, is there ductwork or plumbing located in that wall? This can be expensive to relocate, so consult your budget first on this one and your contractor. Another less expensive alternative would be to create an opening that will not disrupt these mechanical elements but still allow for an open area to be created, such as a pass through or arched wall opening.

3. Depending on the availability of space decide on whether to utilize an island, peninsula or dining room table configuration to allow for entertaining guests, doing homework with the kids or multitasking activities. If additional cabinetry isn’t in the budget a beautiful dining table and upholstered chairs can introduce fabric and warm up the space by introducing color.

4. Introducing an island allows for endless creative ideas! These include introducing alternative materials for countertops and cabinetry to create a much needed focal point, additional storage and/or apppliances, not to mention additional  task lighting, preferably pendant, to delineate the space as its own separate zone or work area. Be sure to consult with a kitchen or bath designer to assist with the  most functinal setup possible and to be sure all clearances are met. Follow the link below to locate the nearest NKBA professional.  http://www.nkba.org/Design/Homeowners/ProSearch.aspx

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