The kitchen: The heart and soul of the home
As the hub of your home, you want your kitchen to always look its best. There is an expression ‘Kitchens sell houses’ and this is very much show to be true as it is the room with the most financial value and one of the biggest factors that could potentially influence the sale of a property.
“Homeowners have agreed that should wish to take on a re-modelling project, the kitchen is the best place to start. Statistics show that almost 50% of the buyers are influenced and impressed by a new kitchen, and 28% of would-be buyers are prepared to pay more if the kitchen was of a higher standard’, notes Lara Machado, Head of the Training Academy at Engel & Völkers Southern Africa.
However, a new kitchen is not a project to consider lightly, as it is a costly and long-term investment as a new kitchen may make your home more marketable, but that doesn't mean you'll get more money in your pocket. Lara cautions that renovations could improve a home's value, however if your home is considered "over improved" compared with other properties in your area, it can actually be detrimental to your property’s value. It is advisable, and well worth seeking some expert advice from your local estate agent. You can ask them to prepare a feasibility analysis that will help you determine the impact of kitchen renovations on your home's value. This is also true to fact in for any renovation you considering undertaking before putting your property on the market.
A good rule of thumb is not to spend money on something that has a great deal of personal taste attached to it. People like to see modern conveniences and styles in the kitchen, even if you aren't in the market for a total re-do, one or two basic updates will make your kitchen look as if it had a complete overhaul.Simple upgrades include installing new, modern appliances, a splash of new paint,changing cabinet faces, or simply just the handles, replacing old electric cooktops with gas, installing floating shelves or adding a kitchen island /butcher block.
Consider the future of your home, and the changing demands it will need to adapt to. If after all things considered, you decide this is a project worth taking on, now would be the ideal time to take the project on as Summer will soon be here, which means you will likely be entertaining again after the winter hibernation, and what better way to do so than in a revamped kitchen with a new up-graded look with modern appliances. We have some great, low cost and easy to implement ideas which would go a long way to making your kitchen a hot topic at the next braai:
10 ideas to upgrade your kitchen without floor to ceiling remodelling.
- Add an island/ butcher block table to the centre of your kitchen. This will give you more work space and storage space. For a smaller kitchen purchase a rolling island — the wheels allow you to move it out of the kitchen or to the side if you need more space.
- A chalkboard wall is a versatile decorative feature, but is also a practical addition as it allows the family to maintain to do lists,menus or shopping lists in a common location and a space for the budding artists in the family to express themselves. A can of black chalkboard paint is inexpensive and a great way to dress up a wall for the perfect backdrop. If you’re out of wall space, a door or cabinet surface will also work.
- Turn one of your flat drawers into a spice drawer. Ideally,this is a drawer next to the stove. Spice drawers are better than the more common spice rack since it frees up wall space for other items that get used more often.
- Add an induction cooktop or replace your electric stove with a gas stove. Induction cooktops are energy-efficient and generate heat directly into compatible pots or pans, making it even more efficient than gas.
- Why not give your upper kitchen cabinets a new look. Convert them to open shelving/ floating shelves -very convenient for storing essentials like cups and pans or condiments/spices all at a hand’s reach.
- Add a creative planter to your windowsill for edible herbs to spruce up your new kitchen decor with green colours and wonderful aromas.
- Stone sinks and counter tops is where the trend is heading.Change your old bland stainless steel sinks to beautiful stone sinks available in various colors and styles, or replace melamine counter tops with granite or Ceasar stone – this is sure to add value to your home’s resale price.
- Add in automation - The kitchen of the future is here today.From sensor-activated lights that illuminate the kitchen only when it's in use,meat thermometers that alert your smartphone or tablet when your dinner is done to smart kettles and coffee machines that get turned on from your smartphone.
- A kitchen cart can add a bit more storage space and free up your counter tops from your cooking books, gadgets, and other non-cooking supplies.
- Should you have a large kitchen, adding a table and assorted chairs is a great way to make the kitchen cosy and create an environment for the family to be together while preparing meals.