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TIPS: What to look for in a new kitchen

There are many kitchen designs, but before we start to talk about kitchen design, it's important to review the key fundamentals of what a kitchen does for a house. First and foremost nothing raises the value of a house like a well designed and executed kitchen. Such a kitchen is both a treat and an investment. Treat it as such. Second of all a kitchen is frequently the centre of activity in the house and as such it's valuable to consider this in planning the layout of a kitchen. This in turn brings us to the third point: kitchens are frequently the place where people spend time during social gatherings (parties, special occasions, etc.). It is valuable to consider this when planning a kitchen layout.

With that in mind what's important in kitchen design? First and foremost a kitchen is the perfect example of a room where both form and function must be seamlessly merged into one design. This is what provides both the challenge and the opportunity. The ambience of a kitchen is a must and as such it's important to take the time to look at finish and detail samples before committing to the full project. Take the time during this phase as the choices you make now will stay with you for a long time and don't settle. Make sure you are fully satisfied before you begin the project. High level drawings and designs are fine, but you will not know what the final kitchen design will feel like unless you spend the time looking at finish and detail samples!

Considering that a well designed kitchen is frequently the center of activity one must consider traffic flow in and around the kitchen. Consider how food will be brought to the table; will there be accommodation for eating areas in the kitchen itself (a comfortable quick bite, vs. a full meal), what will the flow look like if you have guest, etc. Put your kitchen design to a mental stress test of having a large family dinner or an informal friend gathering. Does it stand the test?

Next is kitchen ergonomics. When presented with a kitchen design, consider the logical layout of preparation surfaces and the distance to the fridge. Consider the logical layout of sink, cleanup surfaces to the dishwasher and disposal. A lot of kitchen designers focus on form but not function. This is critical if you will enjoy your new kitchen design.

Last but not least, consider the materials, hardware, construction and installation. This may seem trivial but ask your contractor to provide you with detail on what hardware will be used. This way you can read online reviews and make sure you're satisfied with the choices. You do not want to be caught off guard with cheep hardware, slides, etc... Kitchen installation is also an important factor. Ask you designer/contractor to provide you with plans of how the kitchen will be installed. Poor installation will result in 'horror' stories we frequently hear about. Even if you don't end up with a horror story, subpar kitchen cabinet installation will result in poor fit, loose feel, rattles and squeaks. Get the details before you start on the contract.

All the above recommendations arise as a result of years of work with our customers and what we have learned some contractors/designers do not do correctly. We hope this review was helpful and please don't hesitate to give us a call at any point for a free consultation. Ultimately we hope you will choose Roman Szot as your kitchen designer/fabricator and get the ultimate customer design experience. Good Luck!