Now that you’ve assessed your kitchen space, considered budget and potential resources, it is time to contact a few companies or contractors who might do the work. Remodeling a kitchen is like no other remodeling project as it must include both form and function. Unlike a bedroom in which furniture and furnishings may be moved around with little effort until you get the room exactly the way you want it, a kitchen includes appliances, sinks, countertops and cabinetry that will for the most part be permanent once placed. For this reason, remodeling your kitchen takes thorough research and planning. This is the biggest reason for hiring a kitchen expert, although, if you know exactly what you want, you might consult with a general contractor. A general contractor will generally be less expensive because they don’t have the overhead of a showroom, but a kitchen remodeler has deep expertise as well as samples of myriad materials that you will be able to see, touch and feel.
Whether you think you will use a contractor or a kitchen remodeler, the questions you ask should be similar in nature:
- what experience do you have with kitchens and may I see some of the kitchens you have remodeled (if a contractor, confirm that they did all of the work or ask about other partners they brought in)?
- how do you think about the design of a kitchen to make sure it will meet our personal needs and our lifestyle (it might be helpful for you to go back to the Lifestyle Assessment we introduced in Part I)?
- describe the scope of work and ask them for their opinions on what you describe
- ask for a general range of dollars that your square footage and scope of work might require
- ask to see sample materials and discuss high-end versus low-end in each of the component categories
- ask about timing – when might they have time to start such a project and when might it be completed
Once you’ve received answers to these questions and others that might be important to you (have you ever done ADA compliant work, what considerations might be important if we have young children, what if we want to stay in this house through our aging years and what implications might that have, etc.), get a sense for their honesty and integrity plus fit for your personalities. And, above else, ask for several references. It will be important for you to feel confident that you have selected the right people for your project. If you have any questions about the process, please send us an email at email@example.com or post on our Facebook page, facebook.com/kitchendesignconcepts. And if you are in the Dallas area, we’d love for you to even stop in and see us at one of our two showrooms. Happy hunting!