Being a south Florida general contractor, I tend to meet with a great deal of south Florida homeowners. In these meetings, kitchens are always a hot topic. Most homeowners are looking for ways to add luxury to this essential room. Sure, you can just go ahead and lay out the funds to gut and renovate the entire kitchen; but for many homeowners that is simply not a possibility. If you do not have the time or budget to tackle a full kitchen remodeling project, give one of these 10 ways a shot.
Custom cabinets are beautiful and a great addition to any home. Get a custom look by using panel inserts. These inserts can be almost any material (glass, wood, acrylic, laminate, etc.). This is a simple addition that can be installed by removing the panels of your current doors and replacing or refinishing the existing panel. To really kick things up a notch, add crown molding above the upper cabinets and why not add some soft close hinges to make doors and drawers close effortlessly!
That single incandescent bulb hanging in that dated frosted globe is just not going to cut it anymore. This is another area where you imagination is your only limitation. For a sleek modern look, add lighting above and below the cabinets. Under-mounted lighting will showcase your back-splash, provide task lighting, and enhance the ambiance of the entire room. Over cabinet lighting will give the room more height, while adding a custom feel to the space. Drop in some well place recessed pots or a few pendants and you have a “million dollar kitchen” on a shoestring budget.
Pastel colors are a sign that it is time to upgrade your appliances. New appliances are not only more efficient and modern; they also offer a host of features that will make your life easier. If new appliances are not in your budget don’t worry, there are very effective ways of “camouflaging” your existing appliances to make them appear updated. Using a stainless steel, natural wood, or a cabinet match veneer can give a high end look for a fraction of the price and provide that elegant look that many home owners are going for.
Spruce up this often forgotten area of your kitchen by adding thermoplastic panels or natural wood beams. Pulling the eyes up to the ceiling will make your space feel grand and these accents are relatively inexpensive and many times can be installed in only a day. Even a simple paint job can give your ceilings an air of luxury!
5. Heated Floors
Heating the cold floors of your beloved kitchen will not be something that everyone can see. But there is nothing more luxurious than hopping out of bed late at night and stumbling into the kitchen to get that midnight snack without the shock of an icy cold floor to keep you awake until the sun rises. Radiant heat or electric can be used to get the desired effect, just make sure your installer knows to only heat the areas where there will be foot traffic (the base of your cabinets do not particularly care about the floor temperature).
These items are the luxury that you see. Under-mounted televisions, wall panel speakers, handheld accessory docking stations. These all will make your kitchen a more tech savvy and luxurious place. These modern electric devices are ingrained into every facet of our lives; why not bring them into the kitchen. Besides, don’t we all end up entertaining in the kitchen anyway?
Don’t settle for bare sheetrock with a hint of color. Bring things up a notch with beadboard, wainscoting, stainless steel panels, brick veneers, or stone panels. Any of the wall coverings will offer texture, color, and a sense of sophistication to the kitchens bland walls. Many wall coverings can be attached using a construction adhesive or contact cement which means the installation is fast and very DIY friendly.
Use that area between your upper and lower cabinets to express yourself and add a bit of “WOW” to you kitchen. This has become an area that offers limitless possibilities. Choose from porcelain, ceramic, stainless steel, plate glass, mosaic tile, glass tile, leather, copper, fabric, or just about anything else that will stick to a wall. Installation can often be completed in anywhere from one day to over a weekend. Use contrasting colors, textures, and finishes to really make you backsplash pop.
Time to talk about the element that will complete change the way that you not only utilize but the way the you will view your kitchen from this day forward, Let’s talk about adding or enhancing a kitchen island. This piece of real estate has been the cause of many kitchen renovations over the years and often adding one requires changing the format of the kitchen itself. It can add storage, seating, appliance space, counter space, just about anything that you want even an additional sink. Many clients have opted to go with a cook-top that is open to the seating on the opposite side and a bar-top and stools for guest or kids. This option is ideally suited for those that need an all-in-one island to not only add a luxurious touch but some function as well.
Natural stone countertops have found their way into many homes over the years. Now there are a great variety of natural and man-made products on the market that can really give your kitchen a work surface that screams luxury. Onyx with up lighting is one of our personal favorites. When opting for new counters be sure that you base cabinets can support the weight of the new cabinets that you are interested in installing. Be sure that the base cabinets are anchored to the floor & wall properly and that the tops are lever. You do not want to invest in counters that will last forever if they are going to crack a few years down the road due to installation errors.
So there you go. Take these 10 ways and go wild. Remember that when you go to sell your kitchen is going to be one of the main things that get your home off the market and under a contract. If selling is not in your future, think of all the time that you spend in your kitchen and how each of the 10 ways could make that time more enjoyable.
About the Author:
Dennis R. Huggins II is a certified south Florida general contractor [http://www.stilcon.com] and the founder of Stilcon Construction which is located in Pompano Beach, FL. He is passionate about improving lives using construction related activities to increase the enjoyment and efficiency of the buildings where we live, work, and play. If you would like to connect with him you can contact him here [http://www.stilcon.com/about-us/].
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