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Old 02-13-2013, 05:46 PM   #121
dminnie
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Join Date: Jan 2013
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Quote:
OP back again! Thanks again to all that posted a response. What did we used to do before the internet?! I love the feedback and it certainly has given me alot to think about. I am continuing to do my homework and that could take a LONG time! I read about someone on gardenweb who has been thinking about her kitchen since 2006! I feel like that could be me! I want to spend wisely and frugally and will drive myself crazy in the process!
The very best thing you can do is to take your time! We knew we wanted a new kitchen when we bought. It wasn't horrible, so we decided to live with it for a few years first. That was about 8 years.

By the time we did it, we REALLY knew what we wanted. We were able to gut the whole thing and get exactly what we wanted, without moving walls or plumbing. We did 98% of the work ourselves (very talented husband) so that made it much less expensive than it would've been.

One thing I did that was SO helpful when we got close to starting our tear down...I would prepare meals and think about where things should go...what would make life easier..I was imagining myself cooking in the new kitchen as we had it designed...then we were able to make some adjustments to the plan based on that. The more adjustments you make to the plan BEFORE you start, the less costly changes you wind up making later.
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Old 02-13-2013, 10:26 PM   #122
shelly3girls

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We completed a high end remodel within the past couple of years. We gutted everything (kitchen and previous family room) to make one big kitchen. I don't think your estimate sounds unreasonable since it sounds like you will be doing major work. That said, if it is too high then you can cut costs by either doing some work yourself or lower your expectations in some areas. Only you know what you can spend. We did our kitchen for us, not for resale so we focused on what we wanted as a family to live for the next 15 years minimum.

I used gardenweb a great deal and am so thankful that the forum helped me get my dream kitchen and avoid many possible mistakes. We found many ways to cut costs but often ended up using the savings to splurge on something else we loved.

Two years later I don't regret a single thing that we did. The high end appliances were worth every penny. We were told we wouldn't find them at a discount but found a store in North Jersey that rebated a percentage back to us (Wolf and Sub-Zero). We also ordered certain things online. We quoted 3 different cabinet manufacturers and ended up going with the middle price (Brookhaven and Woodmode) and still getting everything we wanted. We were able to use semi-custom cabinets in most areas and only had to resort to custom for our massive island. Always make sure you are comparing apples to apples when it comes to the cabinet. The lower quality manufacturer left so many things off of our quote that his final number was going to be as high as the better cabinets we quoted.


Get everything in writing from your contractor. We had our estimate broken down to practically the penny including a calendar of exactly when everything would be completed. It actually turned out to be a very pleasant experience. If you find a good contractor they will be able to help you cut costs and stay within a budget. Ours was incredible and did everything he could to prevent us from over spending. We purchased everything directly from the suppliers so our contractor wasn't getting a cut. We only paid our GC for work performed.

Lastly, ask all of your friends what they love and what they hate about their kitchen especially anyone with a similar layout. Good luck!
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Old 02-14-2013, 12:18 PM   #123
ccgirl
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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Cape Cod, MA
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Originally Posted by shelly3girls View Post
We completed a high end remodel within the past couple of years. We gutted everything (kitchen and previous family room) to make one big kitchen. I don't think your estimate sounds unreasonable since it sounds like you will be doing major work. That said, if it is too high then you can cut costs by either doing some work yourself or lower your expectations in some areas. Only you know what you can spend. We did our kitchen for us, not for resale so we focused on what we wanted as a family to live for the next 15 years minimum.

I used gardenweb a great deal and am so thankful that the forum helped me get my dream kitchen and avoid many possible mistakes. We found many ways to cut costs but often ended up using the savings to splurge on something else we loved.

Two years later I don't regret a single thing that we did. The high end appliances were worth every penny. We were told we wouldn't find them at a discount but found a store in North Jersey that rebated a percentage back to us (Wolf and Sub-Zero). We also ordered certain things online. We quoted 3 different cabinet manufacturers and ended up going with the middle price (Brookhaven and Woodmode) and still getting everything we wanted. We were able to use semi-custom cabinets in most areas and only had to resort to custom for our massive island. Always make sure you are comparing apples to apples when it comes to the cabinet. The lower quality manufacturer left so many things off of our quote that his final number was going to be as high as the better cabinets we quoted.


Get everything in writing from your contractor. We had our estimate broken down to practically the penny including a calendar of exactly when everything would be completed. It actually turned out to be a very pleasant experience. If you find a good contractor they will be able to help you cut costs and stay within a budget. Ours was incredible and did everything he could to prevent us from over spending. We purchased everything directly from the suppliers so our contractor wasn't getting a cut. We only paid our GC for work performed.

Lastly, ask all of your friends what they love and what they hate about their kitchen especially anyone with a similar layout. Good luck!
Bolded mine. I can't stress that enough. We asked for an itemized bill from our contractor.

Something else we did, which I was glad we did,was we taped out the kitchen. Previously, we did not have peninsula so we used masking tape to tape it out and "practiced" the workflow. Think what you use the kitchen for. I put in a shelf for cookbooks, a cabinet for my baking pans and a pull out base pantry next to the stove as I like to bake. I also went with sliding shelves in my pot and pan cabinet as I hated constantly reaching in before. We put the pull out trash and recycling in the kitchen. I went with silestone so I can put hot pans directly on the counter as well as cut on it and don't have to worry about it. Because it is quartz, it is not porous so there is no maintenance/sealing required. Red juice spill, no problem.
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