For many families, the kitchen is the hub of the home. It’s where the problems and plus points of the day are discussed, plans are made and cupcakes are decorated by tiny hands. Whether you’re part of a large family or there’s just one or two of you, the kitchen is an important place where functionality has to come first, closely followed by design.
A well-fitted kitchen can add around £10,000 to the value of your home so if you’re looking to sell up and move on any time over the next few years it’s always worth considering what you can do with this important room. But where do you begin when it comes to choosing your perfect fitted kitchen? Belgravia estate agent, Best Gapp says it always starts with a clear budget. “Establish your budget early on and don’t move from it, unless money isn’t an issue. Kitchen costs can soon add up, so be clear about how much you want to spend from the outset and keep an eye on all the little extras like mixer taps and waste disposal units.”
Once you have your budget in mind, think about what the kitchen means to you- if you’re a keen cook you’ll almost certainly want lots of preparation space, a good double oven and ample storage for all your cooking and baking ingredients. If your home is busy with pets and children, think about how practical it will be to keep clean- intricately engraved wooden cupboards may look beautiful but they can be notoriously difficult to look after, with bits of food and grease easily getting trapped in crevices. Central London estate agent, LDG says, “If life is hectic and time is short, it always pays to choose surfaces that are easily wiped down in favour of anything too ornate.”
It’s always a good idea to seek a little inspiration and do your homework before committing to a new kitchen- this is a big investment that can’t easily be changed. M&M Property suggests, “Take your time looking at units in store; try out the cupboard doors and see how they feel to you. Layout is also incredibly important- high shelves and cupboards may look nice and provide extra storage space, but they’re pretty pointless (not to mention dangerous) if you can’t reach them easily.”
If you’re looking long term, you can go crazy with colour and modern features for a really unique look. If, on the other hand, your aim is to sell, it’s always safer to go with something neutral and not too out there. Andrew Reeves
says subtlety is important when selling- “The majority of house hunters will be able to imagine themselves using a kitchen painted in neutral colours and fitted with classic Shaker style cupboards, whereas wall to wall orange tiles and futuristic fittings will be more than a little intimidating to most.”
The important thing is to take your time, know your budget and understand what you really want from your kitchen. Once you have those main factors clear, have fun shopping!