For many, the kitchen is more than just a place to store food and prepare meals. It’s the ‘heart of the home’, where we congregate, connect, and converse. It’s also increasingly a key design feature and a statement about our personal style.
With this in mind, it’s easy to understand why the kitchen is the most popular target for renovation in Australian homes. But when you consider the financial cost and personal inconvenience, one has to wonder, is a kitchen remodel really worth it?
What is a remodel?
The term ‘remodel’ means different things to different people. To some, it means making minor changes – like repainting, replacing benchtops, getting new doors and handles, etc., – to update the look of the space. To others, it means completely redesigning the space to also address any issues with usability, functionality, and flow.
As kitchen design experts, when we say remodel, we generally mean the latter – a full overhaul. We’ll define makeover as not making significant changes. However, for the sake of this article, we will consider the value of both an aesthetic refresh and a full renovation.
The impact on property values
The traditional thinking is that kitchens sell houses. While this remains largely true, the popularity of renovation and real estate TV shows has made buyers savvier and more willing to consider making minor changes themselves. As a result, what you upgrade and the finishes you choose will determine how much your renovation impacts your property price.
Done correctly, both a simple refresh and a full remodel of your kitchen should make your property more saleable. However, if increasing your home’s value is your goal, the improvement in the look, feel, and functionality delivered by a full renovation could offer greater returns. You shouldn’t expect a 1:1 increase though (i.e. the value of your property may not increase by as much as you spend on your remodel but it will help sell the property). This is because many other factors could influence the sale price (such as location, the economy and prices for comparable properties) and, ideally, your updated kitchen should match the rest of your house.
The impact on your lifestyle
Unless you are looking to sell in the not too distant future, the real value of a kitchen renovation is the impact it can have on your day-to-day life. Whether it’s reconfiguring the layout to suit the way you live, relocating your kitchen to improve your overall floorplan, or simply updating the surfaces in line with your personal taste, a remodel should make the space more suitable for you and your lifestyle.
While both a refresh and a remodel can improve how you feel about your kitchen, the novelty of new handles or colour scheme or upgraded benchtops will wear off pretty quickly.
However, a full reconfiguration of the space will allow you to address all of the little issues and daily frustrations. These include but are not limited to not enough storage, no space for bins, a lack of bench space or even the kitchen feeling separate to the rest of the home. Not only will this improve the functionality of your kitchen, but it will also make working in it a more enjoyable experience.
So… is the time, money, and effort really worth it?
In short, yes, a kitchen remodel can be worth it… however, it really depends on your circumstances and what you want to achieve. When working out whether you should renovate, make sure you consider the true cost (including the impact on you and your family while work is being completed) and all of the benefits (including the less tangible, emotional and lifestyle advantages). It’s also important to assess whether a simple refresh will suffice, or a complete remodel is required to get the results you want.
Want more information?
If you’re considering a kitchen remodel, but aren’t sure whether it’s worth it, Kitchen Shack’s here to help. Our wide range of styles include options for every taste and budget and our free design service can help you make sure you get the look you’re after. Book an online consultation today!