Wednesday, May 06, 2009


Residents of KCMO and KCK pay special attention to this one. If you want to upgrade the value of your home it starts in the Kitchen, not by putting a sofa and mattress on the side of your house.
Not So Extreme Makeover!

Since a lot of people these days are still a little jittery about “moving up” when it comes to buying a home, it is a good time to improve what they already own! Many people fix up their homes right before they sell them. WHY??? If you’re going to pay for the improvements, shouldn’t you enjoy them?

An upgraded kitchen is probably the best improvement you can make. Of course, with any project, there is a right way and a wrong way to do it. Before starting anything, you need to do a little planning. Ask yourself a few important questions:

1: Do you like the way the cabinets are currently laid out?
2: Is it time for new appliances? Do you really NEED stainless steel?
3: It’s time for countertops, what is the best surface for your needs?

4: What do I want for a backsplash? Tile? Granite? Synthetic?

5: Do you have adequate lighting?

6: What are you going to do about your floor?

These are just the major ones! There are a LOT of decisions to be made, but all are important for a successful project!

If you are happy with the layout of your cabinets, there is probably no need to replace them. Painting them properly can completely change the look of your kitchen without the high cost of new cabinets. Stained cabinets can be successfully painted! Think about replacing doors and drawers with a fresh, new style. You’ll be surprised at the difference it can make! You cabinets can also be modified to accommodate new appliances. Changing the hardware to a newer style or finish can also make a difference.

New countertops can also make a huge difference in the look of a kitchen. You don’t have to go with a high end granite or synthetic for an upscale look. There are many attractive laminate colors and finishes. Not only that, there are different edge treatments available.

Believe it or not, the countertop in the above picture is NOT granite! It’s a laminate with a 180 wrap edge.

Stainless steel appliances are the IN thing right now, but they are not the only option. Depending on your cabinets and colors, black appliances may fit the bill just fine. You just need to make sure they will fit in your cabinet layout. Did you always want your microwave to hang above your range? Now is the time to do it! Again, your cabinets can easily be modified.

If you are doing all of this, you will need to address your backsplash. You don’t NEED natural stone. There are many patterns in ceramic tile that mimic the look at a fraction of the price. It’s also a good time to add under/above cabinet lighting if you desire.

If your floor is in good shape and you like it the way it is, great! You don’t HAVE to do it, just make sure it all works together with the rest of the colors in the kitchen. If you have wood floors, you should consider refinishing them now. When it comes to wood floors, always opt for the additional coat or upgraded Glitza finish for a long life.

Just remember, there’s a right way and a wrong way to paint cabinets. Preparation is the key! Please don’t go o Home Depot and buy some white latex paint and go to town! It will fail in no time. Latex paint should NEVER by applied to cabinetry and woodwork!

If you would like to see some kitchen makeover pictures, visit my website here: Scroll down a little for the kitchen pictures.

Feel free to contact me with questions or to request a subject for a future column. All comments are welcome!