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Kitchen Remodel Survival Guide

Remodeling your home can improve your space in many ways, making it more FUNCTIONAL, expanding your STORAGE, and UPDATING your area among other improvements. However, with the pleasure of a remodel comes the inconvenience of not having that specific space for a short period of time. How do you live in your house without a kitchen while it’s being remodeled?

To help you and many of our customers, we have created this guide to give you the basics of how to best PREPARE for your remodel.

Step 1. Decide where your food station will be during your remodel

You can set up a food station complete with your fridge, microwave, coffee maker, and paper goods. Select a part of your home that is out of the way of your remodel, has electricity, and preferably a water source. Examples include the laundry room, bathroom, garage, and backyard.

The key to the location of your food station is being out of the way during the remodel. This ensures that you won’t have to move it halfway through. Be sure to consult with your remodeler about what areas of your home to keep clear during construction.

Step 2. Plan your meals during the remodel

Not having a kitchen is an obvious concern and throws a wrench into your normal meal routine. With some planning, eating at home doesn’t have to be a hassle.

Plan meals that don’t need a stovetop, including:

  • Blender for Smoothies
  • Crockpot/Instantpot meals
  • Grill your proteins and veggies
  • Cook on an induction hot plate
  • Toaster oven or convection oven
  • Prepare salads and opt for fresh veggies
  • Prep meals and freeze them for the week, use the microwave to reheat
  • Plan to eat take out 1-2 times a week
  • Go to a friend or family member’s house for dinner

Now that you have an idea of the types of meals you’ll be preparing, it’s time to move out of your kitchen!

Step 3. Move out of your kitchen

Your plans for your remodel are set and now your install date is coming up. It’s time to “move out” of your kitchen and set up camp in your designated food station.

Prep your boxes to sort through your current kitchen supplies. You can use moving boxes, plastic storage bins, or foldable storage crates. Be sure to have labeling supplies so you don’t lose your everyday items.

We suggest having 3-4 boxes to sort your goods by:

  • Your everyday items- sorted by cabinet
  • Items you never use that you’d like to donate
  • Items that are worn out that you can trash
  • Pantry goods

Clearly label what each box contains and keep any boxes that you’ll use more often easily accessible.

Pro tip: Since your new kitchen is set up for better function and organization, consult with your designer on the best use of storage spaces. You can sort your boxes accordingly and label them for your new cabinet layout.

Step 4. Prepare your mindset

Your kitchen is now ready for your remodel now… but are you mentally prepared? Here are a few tips to prepare your mind for a positive experience:

  • Make sure you’re in good communication with your contractor. If you have any questions or concerns before or during the remodel, know who to contact and have their information handy.
  • Remember why you’re having your remodel done in the first place. In just a short period of time, your kitchen will be complete, and you’ll be the envy of the neighborhood! You can even pin up a photo of your virtual render to remind you of the beautiful space that is being transformed. Patience is a virtue.
  • Be flexible with your contractor. There are many factors that go to completing a remodel and making sure your home is structurally sound as well as up to code. Although there are many meetings and hours preparing for a remodel, sometimes there’s a problem that doesn’t arise until the remodel starts… you never know what’s behind walls until they’re removed or uncovered. There’s always speed bumps along the road during a remodel, so be flexible with your contractor—they will work through it with you.
  • Visualize your new kitchen and enjoy the remodeling process. You’ve had many memories in your kitchen, and now you’re re-making your space for more memories to be had. Take photos of your progress and talk to your installer about what they’re doing. Good installers will give you a daily update so you can follow along in the progress.
  • Take a break from your everyday dusting and cleaning in your house—you’re on a CLEANING VACATION! Use this extra time for yourself and do something fun during your remodel—take a nice walk, read a book, take a bubble bath, do an art project, spend quality time with your family, or just have “me” time. Your kitchen is being remodeled and you can remodel your time as well to rejuvenate.

Closing Thoughts

Remodeling your space is a journey and with the right preparation, it can go smoothly and help you be ready for anything that may happen. Like our Design Center Manager, Laurene Johnson likes to say, “Prior proper planning makes all projects go smoother.”

If you’ve already remodeled your kitchen and need helping moving back in, see our Kitchen Organization Guide here.

Design Center

Founded 38 years ago by Tom Poulin CGR, Poulin Design Remodeling, Inc., has become a mainstay of Albuquerque home renovation.

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