Kitchen renovations can be tricky.

If it’s time to turn your tired old kitchen into a dream kitchen that makes your home stand out, here’s 3 questions to consider before getting started… 

  1. Are you wanting to update and refresh?
  2. Do you need more space?
  3. What could potentially go wrong?

To help you avoid the costly mistakes many first time renovators make, here is the ultimate list of things to consider when renovating your kitchen on the Gold Coast, from cooktops to cabinets and everything in between.

12 Things You’ll Need to Decide on

There’s a long list of decisions you’ll need to make so you can let your chosen builder know what you want. (If you need help choosing a good builder,  check out our recent post on what to look for). 

From the layout to the colours, here is a list of the main elements to get clear on:

  1. Layout: How are you going to work in your new kitchen to make it liveable and usable? Things to consider include preparation space, and the location of sinks and cooktops.  Are you adding or removing any elements, and how do you want it to flow?
  2. Sinks: Choose your sinks early because they will dictate other elements. Decide whether you’re going to have a dishwasher too because wastewater is always dispersed into the waste of the sink so it’ll need to be closeby.
  3. Oven: Let the builder know if you want a freestanding or inbuilt oven, and the rough location. Remember,  if you’re going to move it, you’ll also need to relocate  things like power and gas supply which can ramp up the costs.
  1. Cook-tops: Gas or Electric? If you want to switch, there’s costs involved. For instance, going from regular electric to induction requires an upgrade in wiring as standard wiring doesn’t carry enough current to handle it. Keep these things in mind when looking at making the switch.
  2. Bench-top – Whether you choose laminate, stone or marble it’s important to consider costs along with design. Do you want to add an Island bench to your kitchen? If so there’s plenty to consider, and we’ll cover the island bench specifically later in this article.
  3. Splash-backs: Think about whether you’d like a tile splash-back or the same stone as the actual bench-tops. Glass splash-backs are becoming an increasingly popular option too!

Splash-blacks not only have to protect against water, they are also close to heat so there’s regulations regarding how close they can be to cooktops. (more on that below)

  1. Cabinets & handles: With so much to choose from, it can be overwhelming but just break it down into smaller decisions – like material, colour & style. Check out our completed kitchen gallery for a swag of bright ideas.
  2. Lighting: It’s often overlooked, but getting the lighting right can make a kitchen pop.

From down-lights and chandeliers on the ceiling, to strip led under bench-top lighting, don’t underestimate the difference it can make.

Also, don’t disregard  natural light – often adding windows or skylights opens up the whole space making it feel bigger than it actually is.

  1. Storage solutions: If you’ve already got a small space to work with and don’t have the option to take out walls or extend, optimising the space you have in your kitchen is essential.

From  hanging pots or knives above the hotplates to adding a lazy Susan to a corner cupboard to utilise the space –  there’s no shortage of options.

Check out the Tiny house craze for some inspiration!

  1. Mixers or taps: Switching from a traditional hot cold tap to a mixer may require some plumbing updates.
  2. Appliances: Will you upgrade to a larger fridge, oven etc? Keep this in mind when planning the kitchen layout to make sure it fits!

And think about which colour scheme will go best with the space you’re creating with your renovation – there are more options than plain old white these days.

  1. Flooring, Walls & Colours: Get some inspiration from our completed projects gallery, or pick up a few magazines on interior design.

Think about how you want yourself and others to feel when they walk into the space, and look into the psychology of colour – you probably know red promotes passion, but did you know orange is good for communication? Or that Navy blue represents stability?

Should you install an island bench?

Island benches are a popular kitchen renovation trend on the Gold Coast right now, and why not?

Not only do they look great, they add plenty of storage and  preparation space – and provide additional seating for entertaining.

The biggest thing to be aware of when contemplating the island bench is whether or not you want it to have its own sink and power.

Reason being:

You’ll need to run water, drainage and electrical wiring to the bench and the only way is to cut through the slab

This will require using thick steel to reinforce the slab so you don’t cause any structural issues.

It’s not a particularly difficult job – just keep in mind that it’ll take more time, and time is money.

One mistake we see often is people forgetting to budget for the things they don’t see.

An additional warning on splash-backs

200mm is the minimum distance a splash-back needs to be from a cooktop however there are actually units on the market that don’t allow for the minimum distance from the cooktop, and need to be modified to meet code.

Insider tip: Beware of low cost units and cabinetry and always ensure they meet code when you’re thinking about purchasing.

The #1 problem with kitchen renovations?

Planning. If your build isn’t organized well with a clear schedule, many things can go wrong because there’s so many trades involved.

Without a proper schedule, it’s easy for timeframes to blow out quickly, leaving you cooking outside on the bbq every night for weeks on end. 

So make sure your kitchen renovation is scheduled properly in the first place by choosing the right Gold Coast builder to coordinate all the tradies, and manage them effectively.

So where to next?

That’s quite a list of things to consider and it’s so important to choose wisely and do the job right the first time.

The kitchen is one of the rooms that adds the most value to a home, and also one of the rooms your friends and family will spend most time in.

So it’s a job that’s worth doing properly – especially if you plan to enjoy it for many years to come. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out or check out our gallery for a smorgasbord of modern kitchens we’ve renovated on the Gold Coast!

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