A General Contractor's Ultimate Guide to Upgrading Your Kitchen

Is it time to put some thought into upgrading your kitchen?

Have you always wanted a particular style of appliances, cupboards, and counter space that up until now just wasn't in the cards?

If you're ready to take the leap to transform your kitchen, our expert general contractors have put together the following ultimate guide for you.

We'll help you examine what considerations you should take during the planning stages, how to budget for kitchen renos, and tips on avoiding costly mistakes that could threaten to derail your project.

Some Considerations When Planning a Kitchen Remodel

The first step in any successful kitchen remodel is to assess your current space thoroughly. Are there things you loved or found convenient about your existing kitchen? Are there significant changes you'd like to see that would make it easier for you to access and use the space the way you'd like?

Are there elements you wish you could have added to your current set-up? What is missing that would contribute to the best and most functional kitchen layout?

In answering these questions, you'll start to notice some things you aren't going to be able to live without. Meanwhile, there may also be some wish list items you'd like but, in a pinch, could skip in favor of something you need.

What one person considers an element essential to the kitchen is something another person could easily do without, so it's important to personalize this step to your desires.

Consider the following list of some of the most common elements you might find in a residential kitchen:

  • Cabinet style and finish
  • Cabinet hardware
  • Countertops
  • Kitchen island
  • Kitchen sink
  • Backsplash
  • Breakfast bar/nook
  • Appliances
  • Kitchen lighting
  • Electrical
  • Windows
  • While the above list is by no means complete, it gives you an idea of the types of things to consider before starting to plan for upgrades.

    Designing the Kitchen of Your Dreams

    Now that you've identified your goals, it's time to start designing the kitchen of your dreams.

    Here, we start with a floor plan, which will help us determine how everything will come together to produce the space that meets your highest expectations.

    The way your kitchen is laid out will have a critical effect on the functionality of the space. It's vital to get this element right, as some structural engineering may be needed to remove walls, significantly change the layout, or add islands according to your desires.

    Selecting Appliances that Fit into Your New Kitchen Space

    Once you've decided on a layout that suits your goals, the next step is to select appliances that you love.

    We recommend focusing on brand, size, and shape at this stage so that you'll know each appliance you select will fit into your floorplan with ease.

    Once you've decided on a make and model that suits your personal preferences and the spatial parameters you're working with, you can shift your focus to selecting the best colors and finishes.

    Selecting Cupboards and Kitchen Storage

    Planning for kitchen storage looks different for everyone because we all have our preferences for what is critical in our kitchen and how much food we like to have on hand at any given time.

    Planning for kitchen storage looks different for everyone because we all have our preferences for what is critical in our kitchen and how much food we like to have on hand at any given time.

    Consider items like:

  • Non-refrigerated foods
  • Appliances you usually keep stored away
  • Cooking equipment like spatulas and oven utensils
  • Coffee makers, toasters, and anything you'd usually keep on your countertop
  • Now that you have a good list of storable items to think about, you can begin to conceptualize storage options.

    Some of the most popular storage options include:

  • Kitchen pantries
  • Cabinet storage
  • Drawer storage
  • Bench storage
  • Custom kitchen-storage spaces
  • Choosing Kitchen Colors and Style Inspiration

    The fun part begins when you start to see the foundational elements of your kitchen coming together.

    Now it's time to choose the colors and finishes to produce the space you have your heart set on.

    When you choose reputable building contractors, we make it easy to browse through your options while keeping your budget intact.

    Whether you have a traditional, modern, contemporary, or a preference for a hybrid mixture, a design team worth their weight will listen to your goals and ensure your wishes are well respected.

    Budgeting for Kitchen Renovations

    From minor upgrades to total kitchen renovations, your budget and how you put it together and plan for it is a significant factor in the project's success.

    What should you budget for during kitchen renovations?

    Your budget should include every change you plan to make, with room left over for hidden surprises like the need for electrical rewiring to suit new appliances or a plumber to install or move piping to fit your new kitchen or bathroom layout.

  • Cabinet upgrades
  • Countertops and backsplash
  • Lighting
  • Window and window treatments
  • Sinks and faucets
  • New appliances
  • Flooring
  • Paint
  • Contractors and labor
  • While it can seem overwhelming to prepare a budget on your own, working with an experienced general contractor will make this process seem simple.

    We provide you with all the tools needed to ensure your initial budget is comprehensive and accurate.

    How to Avoid Disappointment and Delays During Kitchen Remodels

    Everyone wants to avoid disappointment and delays during a kitchen remodel, so how do you go about ensuring your project goes off without a hitch?

    Our best advice is to do your research to make sure you've selected a trustworthy kitchen remodeling contractor who goes above and beyond to ensure the lines of communication are always open and your budget and wishes are respected.

    This way, if you notice a problem or inconsistency, it can be corrected right away, and any questions you have can be answered promptly.


    Now that we've gone over the steps needed to ensure a kitchen remodel is a complete success, you can be confident in your decision to invest in a kitchen space that suits your every desire.

    If you have additional questions, YCI INC. is always here to help you stay on track. Reach us at (757) 871-8691 to book a consultation at no risk on your behalf.

    Did these pointers inspire you to make some changes in your kitchen? We'd like to know what elements you're considering updating.

    Leave us a few lines about your kitchen renovation plans in the comments below.