Whether you’re wanting a minor style change or entire kitchen renovation, knowing these 9 most common problems which homeowners encounter in their kitchen projects will help you to get the best result, the first time round.

We’ve compiled this list of problems based off of our own experience working with clients where we they have used an external kitchen designer who may not have done a thorough job at inspecting the site or understanding the needs of the client. Hopefully, the information contained in this article helps you to avoid expensive or unnecessary delays on your future project!

Kitchen Design Problem #1: Design Constraints

This relates to the final design and how you plan to get to it. Some constraints may include:

  • Removal of load bearing walls inside your kitchen. This is difficult to do, and you may have to consider other design options.
  • Relocation of plumbing, electrical or gas services. This applies if you are changing the layout of your kitchen and moving your sink and/or gas and electrical appliances.

The above constraints may impact your design choices, as they may not be able to be moved, or the cost to move them may be prohibitive. You may then have to design the kitchen around those areas.

Kitchen Design Problem #2: Matching your existing footprint

Many people may not be prepared to remove flooring, or floor tiles, especially in the event the affected area for flooring may not just be in the kitchen, but may flow through into the dining room, family room and passageways etc.

The challenge will be to match the existing footprint, so the original flooring can be preserved. Old flooring may no longer be available and can be very difficult to match. If you cannot build the kitchen on the existing footprint you will then have to replace flooring, which will add to the cost and will become a much larger project than just the replacement of the kitchen.

Kitchen Design Problem #3: Lack of Bench space

A lack of bench space may be one reason people want to replace their kitchen. Generally, the sink and hotplates are built into the bench, and so take up a lot of space. It is imperative you design your kitchen around these to create ample preparation space.

If the kitchen area is limited you will need to investigate options such as undermount sinks, so you maximise the space and have a full, open bench.

Kitchen Design Problem #4: Increased storage

Other than having a bad design, often a reason for a kitchen upgrade is to increase storage. A couple of options are to add in overhead cupboards, and pantries. There is also the option of replacing doors with drawers. Your kitchen needs to be designed around having banks of drawers rather than doors. It gives a bit more flexibility and options for increased storage.

The ultimate, or best designed kitchen will have increased storage. No homeowner or chef has ever complained about having too much storage space in their kitchen.

Kitchen Design Problem #5: Rangehood Flue

Part of the design should involve extracting the cooking fumes. This is when we discuss the position of the rangehood and flue – you need to take into consideration things such as the position of the ceiling vent and space above the range hood, because there might be rafters, or you may have a double story.

If your rangehood is on an external wall, you can go straight through the back; however, if the position of your hotplate is in the middle of the house you will have to consider where you are going to place the rangehood and flue, when designing the kitchen. Even moving the rangehood a few hundred millimetres can make a difference.

Kitchen Design Problem #6: Rubbish Removal

Every good kitchen should have space for a rubbish bin, whether it is under the bench, or an integrated one, fully concealed inside the kitchen cabinets. You need to ensure it is all sealed, so the smell of kitchen waste does not permeate the rest of your cupboards.

You need two or three options for your rubbish; recycling, scrap food and returnable cans and bottles.

Kitchen Design Problem #7: Entertainment space

As the kitchen is often the main hub for entertaining, this should be a consideration when designing the space.

Questions to ask yourself when planning your kitchen are; while prepping food are you still going to be able to continue speaking with your guests and not have your back to them? Is there a space in the kitchen area where they can be seated?

Inclusion of both indoor and outdoor entertainment is also important, as this is a large part of family life.

Kitchen Design Problem #8: Lack of lighting

Lighting is critical. If you have large windows, ensure you make use of the natural light. If not, you need to consider what type of lighting would best suit inside a kitchen. Often people end up putting down lights or strip lights underneath the overheads – creating ambient light while you are working. Try to avoid shadows where possible. Effective lighting will make a kitchen feel a lot bigger and more welcoming.

Kitchen Design Problem #9: Current trends

When designing your kitchen, keep in mind that one day you may wish to sell your house. Avoid the temptation to choose colour and style trends that will date quickly. A neutral palette will stand the test of time, will give you a light and welcoming space, and will make your house more marketable in the long run.

In conclusion

Be open minded with your design concept and choose a good designer, who can provide innovative solutions for your kitchen. The right designer will help you navigate these common pitfalls and ensure the best outcome.

If you want help from one of our kitchen design consultants, feel free to give us a call on (08) 6555 4004 or fill out our contact form so we can speak with you and get you the kitchen you’ve always wanted!

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