Who to Hire
for Your Kitchen Remodel
You've decided at last to commit to that long-delayed
kitchen remodel. As you stand in the middle of your
current kitchen and survey it the thought occurs to you
that you don't know the first thing about how to begin a
kitchen remodel. This is a very good time to call in the
help of professionals.
Broadly, there are two phases of a kitchen remodel which
you might want to hire help for: design and planning and
the actual construction phase. Many remodeling firms will
handle both aspects of your kitchen remodel, with in-house
designers and a roster of skilled professionals such as
plumbers, electricians, floor layers and cabinet makers to
call on. Or you can subcontract all the services out
yourself, hiring a designer or decorator for the first
phase, and finding your own contractor for the final phase
of the kitchen remodel. Some people prefer the convenience
of only dealing with one company, but others prefer a
hands-on approach and don't mind the legwork and research
it takes to hire many separate workers.
One of the best ways to find a designer is word of mouth.
Ask around. Inquire of friends and family whose remodeling
jobs you've admired. The design of a kitchen remodel
project is a delicate process, with the designer needing
to be aware of the client's tastes as well as how they
generally use the space. A good starting point is to
identify in general terms what sort of design you think
you might like. To start with, look through magazines and
tear out photos you like, and then look for a designer
whose tastes match your ideas. If a designer specializes
in contemporary spaces and you live in an historic home,
it is not going to be a good match for your kitchen
remodel design. Another thing you can do is do searches on
the internet. Many sites have lists of local designers
they work with.
Once you've found a designer and decided on a plan for you
kitchen remodel, it's time to locate a contractor. A
convenient place to start is with your designer-inquire if
she works with anyone regularly, or can make a
recommendation. If not, internet research is a good place
to start. Many a website maintains lists of kitchen
remodel contractors. Be sure to check references and see
an example of your chosen contractor's work, if possible.
Check the local site of the Better Business Bureau to make
sure your contractor has no complaints against him. One
safe way to proceed is to go through a home improvement
chain store. They work with a wide variety of contractors
and cannot afford to associate with inferior
professionals. It's always a good idea to protect
yourself, though, and check references and ask to see
examples no matter who you are working with.
Follow a few simple guidelines and you'll find the process
of hiring people to help you with your kitchen remodel
easy and satisfying. And before you know it, you'll be
surveying your brand-new, remodeled kitchen!