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5 Must-Haves for Your Kitchen Remodel

A kitchen remodel is one of the most exciting changes you can make to your home. Whether you’re looking for a top-to-bottom change or just wanting to modernize the décor, shaking up your kitchen can change the entire feel of your house. Before you start tearing out cabinets, have a plan in place, including a full budget so you can be sure to invest in the most important kitchen features during your remodel, whether that’s luxury countertops, a double oven or a full-size freezer.

Room to Work

Once you’ve remodelled your kitchen, you’re going to want to spend a lot of time there, and so will every other member of your household. Ensure you have plenty of space for the whole family by prioritizing wide angles and open spaces, even if you have to cut back on certain features. You can always add a chest-freezer or storage shelves for bulk non-perishables to the garage, but you don’t want to remodel your space six months from now because you’ve realized your counters are too small for two people to stand at together.

Island Space

A well-designed kitchen island can define your kitchen space, completement your décor and expand your entertaining options. According to Harvard, regular family meals promote higher self-esteem and lower rates of anxiety and substance abuse for children, so design your kitchen with group meals in mind. Ideally, you’ll choose an island large enough to serve as a secondary table or breakfast spot, but if space is limited, you may need to settle for something smaller. Don’t go any smaller than the same width as your wall-adjacent counters or your island will look too small. Make sure to choose an island made from easy-to-clean materials plus storage space and one or two electrical outlets. Depending on your family’s lifestyle, you may want to add a built-in wine refrigerator, under-the-counter laptop storage or multiple levels.

Granite Countertops

Granite is a beautiful, all-natural way to bring instant class and beauty to any kitchen. Although pricey, granite countertops will last for decades with proper maintenance. If you’re on a budget, consider choosing granite for your most prominent countertops, including the kitchen island, and selecting a different material for hard-to-see spots. Granite countertops come in one-of-a-kind color patterns as each piece of granite is created by molten rock cooling into a solid mass, so you can find a stand-out statement piece to draw the eye or look for options that match the rest of your décor.

Lights

Natural light is ideal, whether that means big windows, skylights, or sliding glass doors. If your house doesn’t allow for adequate natural light, add soft overhead options – not harsh fluorescents – and consider decorative light casings. Either way, make sure your storage spaces are well-lit; cabinets with built-in lighting are virtually the same cost as those without but offer a more pleasant cooking experience.

Plants

Try to squeeze in an herb box or succulent plant anywhere that you can find natural lighting. According to Healthline.com, plants improve your happiness levels and productivity while decreasing stress and air toxicity. The kitchen is a natural spot for burn-treating plants like aloe or fresh, easy-to-grow herbs like basil and thyme; you’ll be surprised how much you save on spices when you can just break off a few stalks of your favorite herbs instead. Incorporate plants into your kitchen décor by adding a succulent centerpiece to your kitchen island, hanging baskets in front of any window spaces or purchasing faux plants or flowers to decorate awkward corner spots.