6 Tips to Prepare For Your Kitchen Renovation
You’re excited for your new kitchen. The plans have all been made, you’ve picked everything out right down to what napkin holder you’ll keep on your future quartz countertop. All that’s left to do now is wait for demolition to begin and the new kitchen will be ready before you know it.
But have you considered how you’ll survive while the kitchen is still under construction?
Your favorite renovation shows on television give a good glimpse into the planning, demolition, and the final big reveal but they always seem to leave out the less glamorous parts of home renovation. How are you going to prepare dinner while the fridge and stove are being replaced? Where will you wash your dishes while you’re waiting for the plumber to hook up the new sink and dishwasher? And where are you going to put all of your dishes, cookware, and small appliances while the cabinets and counters haven’t been installed yet?
If you’re going to survive your kitchen renovation, you need a plan. These tips will help you prepare so living in a construction zone is nothing more than a temporary change of routine.
1. Create a Temporary Kitchen Station
While your kitchen is under construction, you’ll need to set up a temporary kitchen elsewhere in your home. It’s never going to be perfectly convenient; just remember that the setup only needs to last a short time while construction is ongoing.
Set up your temporary station near another sink in your home, whether that be a utility sink in the garage, the powder room, or even a laundry room. You’ll need easy access to water for food preparation as well as cleanup. If possible, move your old refrigerator or a mini-fridge within easy reach of the sink to establish your temporary kitchen location. Complete the setup with a small table to serve as an interim countertop and a microwave or microwave oven and hot plate or electric skillet.
2. Convert to Disposable Dishware and Cutlery
While your kitchen sink and dishwasher are unavailable, you’ll really appreciate how many dirty dishes your household accumulates. Washing everything by hand in a smaller than usual sink is frustrating and may be a daunting task based on the size of your household. Stocking up on disposable dishware and cutlery will help keep the stress low; everything can just be thrown away at the end of the meal.
It may sound like an attack on the planet, but just because you’re only getting a single use out of an item doesn’t mean that you can’t make ecologically sustainable choices. There’s more options than ever for biodegradable, compostable, and eco-friendly items. Have you heard of palm leaf plates? They’re made of fallen leaves shed naturally by the trees, so no timbering or deforestation involved. Bamboo, sugarcane, birchwood, and even paper plates and bowls are also easily biodegradable options. Instead of plastic forks, try looking for cutlery made out of bamboo, wood, or agricultural waste materials like sugarcane pulp, corn starch, and rice husks.
3. Pack Up Your Existing Kitchen
It’s amazing how much stuff accumulates in the kitchen. Decorative items, glassware and dishes, cutlery, pots and pans, food, and all of the other bits and pieces that make up your kitchen will have to be safely removed from the area in preparation for construction. Even items hanging on the wall should be removed in case the vibrations of power tools wiggles something loose and causes any damage.
Take note of what all of your bare essential kitchen items are. It may vary slightly from household to household, but most people will find that they need constant access to paper towels, garbage bags, dishcloths, and dish soap. Oven mitts will be handy for taking food out of a microwave oven and cooking utensils are an absolute must have. You may want to keep out salt, pepper, and other spices that you use often as well. If you’re an avid coffee drinker, you’ll want to make room for your coffee maker, pods or filters, and whatever sweeteners you prefer. Have all of these items within easy access to prevent too much frustration when preparing meals.
Items that are not essential should be temporarily packed safely away in neatly labeled boxes. Silverware is best stored in plastic wrap or gallon-sized bags, just be careful that forks don’t puncture through! Knives should be stored securely in separate containers and marked clearly to prevent any accidents.
4. Plan for Meals with Easy Cleanup
Food preparation is going to be very inconvenient while you’re displaced from your kitchen. You won’t have much space, none of your usual appliances, and how many dishes you’re going to have to wash will always be lingering in the back of your mind.
The goal in preparing meals while the kitchen is under construction is to create as little mess as possible. Planning out one-pan recipes that can be executed in your temporary workspace, taking advantage of nice weather to cook on the grill instead of the kitchen, or making good use of your crockpot will minimize the cleanup time and make preparation as easy as possible for you.
Having snacks like peanut butter, crackers, dried fruit, trail mix, and granola bars can fill in for a small meal in a pinch. If you have extra cold storage in your home, consider stocking up on frozen meals that can be easily reheated in the temporary kitchen setup. These might be homemade meals packed in tupperware, microwaveable meals from the grocery store, or grab and go refrigerated foods like cold cuts, cheese, and fruits.
5. Get Out for a Bit if You Can
If you’re comfortable with the construction work going on while you’re not home, it might be worth considering taking a few days to get out of town and escape the chaos. Maybe you have a business trip you need to schedule anyway or can take the opportunity to go on vacation. Visiting out of town relatives might also score you a homemade meal or two!
Even if you’re not able to get out of town, it still may be worth getting out of the house more than usual while the renovation is ongoing. Going out to dinner means no temporary kitchen cleanup and may give you the perfect opportunity to visit restaurants you haven’t been able to try yet.
6. Keep the Big Picture in Mind
It can be hard to see your old kitchen torn apart and turned into a construction zone and the time spent in the middle of it can be frustrating and stressful. No matter how much preparation and thought you put into the plan for the temporary kitchen, it will not be an ideal situation. Remember that this is just a very short period of inconvenience in the grand scheme of things. Try to keep your eye on the prize: At the end of all of the trouble is the sparking new kitchen of your dreams.
Before you know it, the struggles of the brief time without a proper kitchen will just be a funny memory to laugh about, or maybe even forget about completely.
Ready for an upgrade to your kitchen? Contact Kitchens By Oaks at 585.349.8100 to schedule your free design consultation today!