April 29, 2018
Kitchen size has changed over the years. Historically, kitchens were not the focal point of the house. For most of their history kitchens were dark, smelling, messy places prone to catching fire. But today the size of a kitchen matters, as well as its location and its layout.
You can get a hint of how important a kitchen is by the return on investment on a kitchen remodel. Typically a kitchen remodel will get you a 93% ROI. Where as a roof or window replacement will only get you about 80% ROI.
A home with a small kitchen, or one that is isolated from the rest of the house, will not sell very well. Not to mention it won’t be a very fun place to cook dinner.
Why does a kitchen need to be large? Well, unless you live by yourself, there is often more than one person in the kitchen at a time during meals. It is more than a matter of luxury, but one of convenience and efficiency. The old saying, "many hands make light work," is never truer than when cooking dinner for a family. A kitchen large enough for 2 or 3 people to prepare a meal saves time and makes meal time much less stressful.
Placing the kitchen at the heart of the home is where it should be. Keeping the kitchen, and the people in it, connected to the rest of the house is very important. Beyond the social aspect of keeping everyone connected, it speaks to our active lifestyle. An open floor plan lets you prepare meals or grab a snack while keeping an eye on everyone. This can even be a safety issue when dealing with small children.
So you have a large kitchen which is open to the main living space. That is great, but how is the kitchen laid out? The orientation and the features of a kitchen are just as important as its size and location. A poorly designed kitchen will quickly become your least favorite room in the house. And since the kitchen is the most occupied room in the house, next to the bedrooms, that could be a bad thing for your new home.
The arrangement of the appliances and the available counter space can make or break a kitchen. Added features like islands with cooktops and sinks can make a huge difference in usability. A walk-in pantry off the kitchen can be a game changer. You combine a kitchen with a generous island, a serving bar, a walk-in pantry all next to a breakfast nook and you truly have the heart of the home.
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