Replace, Renew or Expand Your Kitchen

Early in remodel planning, determine whether to reface or replace your kitchen cabinets or expand your space. Any of the three will provide you with a new look. Your decision will be based on your current space, budget, schedule and family needs. If you do not plan on expanding your space, there are three ways to refresh the design: change the kitchen layout, reface or paint your cabinets, and replace cabinets. Each plan has pros and cons.

When setting a budget and determining whether to expand your kitchen or reface or replace cabinets, consider how long you plan on staying in your home and how your investment will be reflected in the home’s value. Kitchen remodels, according to US News Money, generally yield a higher return than bathroom or other remodel projects.

Replace Kitchen Cabinets

Most kitchens are designed in one of several pre-determined layouts, such as an L-shape, U-shape, galley or single wall. The first three shapes work well, with the sink, stove and refrigerator forming a work triangle. If you are happy with way your kitchen is laid out but you need more than a simple facelift, replacing cabinets and appliances is the answer. Your kitchen footprint will remain the same while major kitchen components such as cabinets, appliances, flooring and countertops will be updated.  A kitchen footprint remodel can be economical, since you will not be moving appliances and gas, water and electrical will remain in their current locations.

Renew: Reface or Paint Your Cabinets

Refinishing or refacing cabinets with new doors or refinishing or repainting the cabinets MAY be an economical solution. If your existing kitchen cabinets are in good working condition, resurfacing your kitchen can be a good option and may lessen the time that your kitchen is under construction. However, savings over replacement may be less than you expect, and often there are no savings at all. Resurfacing or refacing cabinets with underlying breakage or hidden damage will have very short-term benefits, as the cabinets will need repair or replacement at some point. Refinishing a wood-stained cabinet is labor intensive, and harsh chemical strippers, sanding dust and finishing products will affect indoor air quality. Initial quotes for cabinet refacing generally don’t include features such as cabinet interiors, drawer boxes and shelves. The final bill for refacing frequently exceeds the cost to buy brand new factory-direct cabinets.

If you are deciding between replacing and refacing cabinets, you may want to download our Cabinet Refacing PDF Guide: 8 Questions to ask Before Refacing or Repainting Your Cabinets below:

Cabinet Refacing Guide
View Guide

Expanding Your Space?

Expanding your space involves moving walls, expanding into other areas of your home, combining spaces such as the kitchen and dining room, adding on to your home, or rearranging your existing kitchen footprint to include more storage or a center island. Expansion allows you to address almost anything you don’t like about your existing kitchen, including the layout. You can create additional storage space, add that island you’ve been wishing for, and free up traffic lanes. Expanding your space is the most expensive option. It is a good investment if it adds proportionately to your home’s resale value or if you plan on being there to enjoy it for a long time.


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Related Topics

Want a great kitchen? Learn more with the topics below to help keep your remodel plan on time, on task and on budget.
Consult an Expert
DIY or Pro?
Remodel Checklist
Remodel Timeline
Remodel Budget