The price tag on a kitchen renovation may be enough to make some people feel nauseous. For a complete studs out renovation, you should expect to spend between $25-$50K (or more). You may be able to save a little if you have the skills (and the time) to DIY the project. However, the fact remains that tackling a major kitchen overhaul is not for the faint of heart.

If you don’t need to completely gut the kitchen, then you still could spend $10-$30K, depending on the price tags of the materials and appliances you choose, size of the room, etc.

Due to this cost, many people will put off a remodel as long as possible, often living with less than desirable kitchen conditions. There are some clear signs that you may be overdue for bringing your kitchen into the 21st century.

You Have the Available Funds

First and foremost, you need to have the available funds or home equity to tackle the remodel. If you are short, you will need to take steps to start saving for a remodeling fund. Don’t try to tackle a project like this piecemeal or without adequate funds. When unexpected issues arise, or you run out of money, you may find yourself mid-project without a usable kitchen.

Your Counter And Storage Space is Non-Existent

Here in Northern Virginia, small spaces are a way of life. Urban areas are full of small condos and older homes with tiny kitchens. If you cabinets and counters are so packed with stuff that you can’t actually use the kitchen, or if you are storing kitchen items under the bathroom sink or in the coat closet, then you know you need more storage (or to declutter, or both).  If you live in a condo, you may be somewhat limited on changing the floorplan, moving walls, etc., but there still may be ways increase storage capacity with taller cabinets, or organizational tools that make better use of the space you have. You’ll have more options if you live in a single-family home, but the bigger the project, the bigger the price tag!

You Need a Better Layout

Some kitchen layouts of years past leave us scratching our heads, and some can even be dangerous. Or, if you are party of the Boomer or older Gen X generations, you may be thinking about your needs as you age, or are thinking about accessibility and mobility issues. Regardless of the reason, the layout of your kitchen is important for efficiency, convenience, and safety.

Your Kitchen Looks Dingy Even After Cleaning

Old grout, tiles, and linoleum can become dingy with age, and may look dirty even with the most meticulous of housecleaning habits. If you are spending hours of your time and lots of money trying different cleaning products that never work, it may be time to consider replacing the flooring or the countertops. If your cabinets are still in good shape, you would be surprised the difference a new floor and countertop can make, and are a good option for budget-minded remodelers. You may fall in love with your kitchen again!

Your Appliances are Energy Hogs

Do you still have Harvest Gold or Avocado Green appliances in your kitchen? It’s not the color you should worry about (although, we do have to wonder why manufacturers ever thought those colors were a good idea!). What you need to worry about is the impact older appliances may be having on your energy bills. The newer, energy-efficient models could help you save significantly on your monthly bills. You may also reduce your repair bills, as older appliances may become more difficult to keep running, as parts become more difficult to find.

Your Outdated Kitchen Drags Down Your Home Value

This is where things get a little tricky, and you may want to enlist the help if a Realtor(R) to help you decide what renovations make sense. If you plan to stay in your home for another five years, it may make sense to gut the whole room and rebuild from the studs. You’ll have several years for your equity to recover and will recoup more of your costs. However, if you are planning to sell in the next year, you may want to think about smaller, strategic improvements that don’t cost as much, but will have greater appeal to buyers. Updating the flooring, lighting and fixtures, and maybe fresh paint, may be all you need to freshen up the room and prepare for sale.

Deciding on when and how much to remodel your kitchen is different for everyone. There isn’t an exact formula to follow. But if you are finding yourself avoiding your kitchen because you hate the sight of it, or eating out too much because your kitchen just doesn’t work for you, then it may be time to think about tackling some improvements to the space.

Whether you are looking to buy or sell a home in Northern Virginia, we are always here to help with all your real estate needs! If you are unsure of your home’s value or if you are thinking about buying or selling, contact Jason at 703-298-7037 or Jason@JasonAndBonnie.com.