Now that you’ve planned and designed your kitchen or bathroom cabinet renovation, it’s time to commit.
We’ll walk you through how to take the next steps in measuring, ordering, and preparing for the actual renovation so that you can feel confident and ready for all the changes that a remodel will bring to your daily routine.
Phase 1 — Measuring Your Space
This first phase is absolutely crucial. Your kitchen or bathroom is unique, and requires cabinets that work specifically for your space. The layout of your windows and doors, the wall size, and any obstructions are going to impact the size and type of cabinets you can use. The setup of plumbing and electrical fixtures will also impact how your design will look, so marking their locations is important.
With that in mind, here are some simple steps to make sure you have an accurate layout of your room to prepare for new cabinets.
- Draw a diagram of your room.
- Measure the wall lengths, ceiling height, location and size of windows, doors, pass-throughs, and any obstructions. Record all of these items on your diagram, no matter how insignificant they seem. When measuring, ensure that your measurements are to the nearest ⅛ of an inch. Your cabinet specialist will confirm these later, but starting as accurately as possible will be a huge help.
- Record the location of all light switches, light fixtures, wall outlets, and plumbing.
- Now that you have all your measurements, go through and measure everything once more. This is a great time to catch any inaccuracies or anything you missed the first time around.
- With your room dimensions complete, you’re ready to visit your cabinet specialist. Get ready to order your cabinets!
Phase 2 — Ordering Your Cabinets
At this stage, you’ve done all your research and are ready to dive into the renovation. You know what cabinet design you want, you’ve met with your cabinet specialist, and you know the layout of your room. With your budget in hand, your project is now underway.
This phase will involve working with a number of other people. Here’s what to expect.
- Final measuring. Your cabinet specialist or installer will perform a final measurement of your space to ensure complete accuracy.
- Final floor plan review. Your cabinet specialist will show you the final floor plan outline and explain how your new cabinets will fit into the space. Everything, down to the most specific details, should be recorded on this plan. This is your last chance to clarify anything or make any changes to measurements, so make sure that you fully understand the design. If you’re unsure of anything, ask! Your cabinet specialist will be happy to explain and go over any specific points with you.
- Sign documents and place a deposit. You’ll review and sign the final drawings and specifications to confirm your approval and go ahead with the project. Make sure you keep these documents and all others related to ordering your cabinets as you’ll need to refer to them later in the project. You’ll also submit your deposit during this step.
- Place your order. With everything confirmed, you’ll submit your cabinetry order. Your cabinet specialist will be the one to place this order, with your approval.
- Confirm wait time. Once your order is submitted and received, you’ll learn the expected arrival date of your new cabinets. This will likely take some time, so spend it preparing your space for the renovation!
Phase 3 — Preparing for Installation
The renovation is nearly here. If you’re both excited and nervous, that’s perfectly normal. Renovations will impact your schedule, home, and lifestyle, but they can be managed and prepared for so that you don’t find the process too stressful.
The main thing to remember is that renovation is messy. Demolition and installation are dusty and dirty, so you’ll want to do your best to keep it contained to your kitchen or bathroom.
Fortunately, it’s not too difficult to isolate your space.
- Clear the room. Take out as many items as possible from the room undergoing renovation. Even appliances—move your fridge, stove, furniture—anything not fastened to a wall or the floor. Move them to a safe room that won’t be impacted by the renovations.
- Seal the room. Get some plastic sheets and masking tape and cover the doorways and openings. This won’t be 100% effective, but it will certainly help keep most of the debris and dust within the renovation area. Make sure that there is still a way to enter and exit the room. If the room has an opening too large to seal (such as a kitchen that opens directly to a living room), make sure you protect the items in the adjoining room. Cover your furniture, wall hangings, bookcases, and similar items with tarps or blankets.
- Close vents. Close or seal off all vents that are on the same floor as the renovation to stop the spread of dust throughout your house.
- Prepare appliances. Make sure that any new appliances you’ve ordered are at your house and ready to be installed before the renovation begins.
With your home protected and a clear workspace for tradespeople to perform the installations, you’re ready for the renovation to begin.
Phase 4 — Managing Life During Construction
You have two main options during this phase of cabinet installation—you can stay at home and make do with living alongside construction, or you can live elsewhere for a time.
If you don’t want to live alongside the mess and noise of cabinet installation or have to manage without a kitchen, staying somewhere else is a simple option. You can stay at the home of a family or friend, stay at a hotel or AirBnb, or go on vacation during this time.
If you pursue one of these options, take into account the extra cost that will come from extended hotel stays. You would have ideally planned for this during the budgeting stage, but keep an eye on your banking account to make sure you don’t overextend yourself during this time.
If you’re considering staying further from home or going on a vacation, bear in mind that you’ll want to be as accessible as possible. If any issues come up during construction, you’ll need to be easily available to answer questions or make decisions.
Staying at Home
Living through a renovation is a bit uncomfortable, but completely possible. There will be noise, dust, and other inconveniences, so prepare ahead of time to make the experience as smooth as possible.
- If you have a second bathroom, use that for the extent of the renovation.
- If you don’t have a second bathroom option, remove everything from the bathroom and store them elsewhere aside from the moments when you need to use the room. The bathroom should be completely empty aside from the short moments you need to use it.
- Create an alternate kitchen. Find another space in your house where you can set up the essentials, such as a microwave, toaster oven, coffee maker, and a single burner element. The area should have enough outlets for your appliances and good ventilation. You’ll also want a nearby sink or bathtub for a source of water. If there isn’t one already, set up a flat surface where you can prepare meals. If there isn’t room or solid flooring for your refrigerator in this space, store it in the garage.
- Keep to the basics. Plan simpler meals that don’t require lots of preparation or cleanup. Use canned or ready to eat meals, or try deli products or frozen dinners. While cooking, try to use as few cooking implements as possible to save on cleanup. You might be able to get through an entire renovation with only plates, cutlery, a can opener, a cutting board, a spatula, foil wrap, a frying pan, a pot, and garbage bags.
- Get inventive. If it’s the right season, use your barbeque. The outdoors can become both a kitchen and dining room. Break out the slow cooker, or try no-cook recipes.
- Keep it clean. Even though your house might feel like a mess, make sure you clean up after every meal to keep your makeshift kitchen neat. It will help you make it through the renovation ordeal, especially in a smaller space.
- Eat out. Restaurants are an easy option for a break from the house. Depending on your budget, you should do this sparingly, but eating out is a convenient alternative and a great way to get out of the house during the busyness of renovations.
Have any further questions about the lead up to cabinet installation? We’re always happy to chat. Feel free to contact us if you have any further questions or want us to connect you to one of our incredible dealers!