Tired of your old kitchen and ready to remodel? Kitchen remodels are a big endeavor for even the savviest of homeowners and there’s a lot to take into account beyond your finish selections. Space planning and making your kitchen functional is far more important than its appearance.
First up would be to take a look at your current kitchen layout and determine if the locations of your appliances and cabinet configurations need to be changed to make it a more efficient space. It is costly to move electric and plumbing, but if you are going to rip up your kitchen, you may as well get it the way you want it!
Your kitchen “work triangle” is one of the most important factors when space planning a kitchen. It’s the distance between the three integral parts of a kitchen… the stove, sink, and refrigerator. All three stations should be close to one another, but not so close that the cook feels cramped.
It’s also important to take into consideration the counter space next to appliances. Having an appropriate amount of “landing space” next to the stove and microwave for placing dishes and food during food prep helps make a kitchen more functional. Minimum space required is 15″, but if you have the space, we recommend trying to get a little more than that. The sink area also needs adequate landing space – 24″ minimum on one side and 18″ on the opposite side.
Another consideration to make when planning for a kitchen remodel is the space for working and traffic flow. There are guidelines for the “work” space and the “walkway” space. The work space is the main area where food prep occurs and includes your kitchen’s work triangle. You need to allow for a minimum of 42″, which gives the cook enough space to easily open cabinet doors and access what’s inside, as well as open appliance doors. The “walkway” space is different and can be a path through the kitchen to reach other parts of the home, but shouldn’t run through the work space in the kitchen. The minimum width of the “walkway” space is 36″.
The best thing you can do before starting your remodel project is to measure the footprint of your kitchen. Include any additional space if you are expanding, and sketch out the layout with cabinets, appliances, island, sink, etc. Check your dimensions and your door swings, make sure you have adequate landing space and clearance for your doors. It would be a shame to invest a large amount of money into a new kitchen that looks beautiful, but is no more functional than your original space.