So you’ve decided to remodel the most used, most crowded, most important part of your house – the kitchen.
You’re so excited to have the new floors, the gleaming countertops, the more efficient use of space and that new six-burner stove you’ve been coveting! This remodel is going to be so so so worth it once it’s done. But that’s just the thing – “once it’s done” – and it won’t be done for a few weeks.
How are you going to survive this upheaval of your normal routine?
How are you going to survive having dust everywhere?
How are you going to survive not having access to your appliances, your food and dish and utensil storage? your fridge?
The best thing to do, if you’re able, would be to leave the house for the duration of the remodel. Go find an AirBnB or a hotel somewhere. Heck, go camping! Just get out of there if you can because your living situation is going to be flipped upside down until the last drawer pull is back in place.
If you’re like most of our clients, finding a temporary place to live isn’t always in the cards and you have to live in the construction zone for some, most or even all of the process. If that’s the case, here are our tips for Kitchen Remodel Survival:
1. Expectation Management
Know what you’re getting yourself into. First off, the house is going to be a mess, it just is. No matter how hard you try to keep the dust and debris in the kitchen space, it will infiltrate the rest of your home. Second, expect changes and delays in various parts of the process. You can’t control the mess or the contractor alterations so try to let it go – get out of the house more than you’re used to.
2. Be prepared
Give yourself plenty of time to pack up the kitchen and all the things that go in it. Make sure you consider what and how you’re going to eat in the coming weeks – do you need a mini fridge somewhere else in the house? If so, use this space to make a tiny kitchenette for yourself – toaster oven, hot plate, coffee maker – whatever your bare necessities are (creativity counts in this area). Are you going to be eating out more often? If so, be sure to include this expense in your overall budget, it adds up quick!
3. Meal prep
Now that you’ve got your tiny kitchen and take-out plans squared away, you should also spend some time menu planning. That tiny kitchen is going to be a life saver but it will require some creative planning if you’re going from a full-size oven with 4 burners to a single hot plate and a microwave to cook a meal for your family. Sandwiches, cereal and pre-made food are going to be your friends because of the easy prep and easy clean up.
4. Keep it clean
After you’ve made your meal, don’t leave the dishes to be cleaned later – do it right away! This will help keep you sane and at least this tiny portion of your home tidy. You may be doing dishes in the bathtub but be sure to get them done as quickly as possible.
5. Be outside
This is a big one. Because your house is now a construction zone and your kitchen situation is basically a glorified camping setup, you’re going to want to be outside more. This means grilling in the yard (summer is a great time for kitchen remodels) and generally excusing yourself from the mess that has exploded in your soon-to-be drool-worthy kitchen. Keep your eyes on the prize and your family outside as much as possible.
Have you remodeled a kitchen and lived to tell the tale? Share your tips in the comments below!