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Should I bother to renovate my kitchen with a first time home buyer''s credit?

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Hera

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Date: 2/10/2009 12:01:26 AM
Author: pennquaker09
The fridge needs to move to the upper left hand corner.

That might be breaking the kitchen working triangle (If I understand your suggestion correctly). May be better across from the sink though.
 

Clairitek

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Date: 2/10/2009 12:13:02 AM
Author: heraanderson
Date: 2/10/2009 12:01:26 AM

Author: pennquaker09

The fridge needs to move to the upper left hand corner.

That might be breaking the kitchen working triangle (If I understand your suggestion correctly). May be better across from the sink though.

I can see what you mean about moving it but I don''t think thats in the budget. Its recessed in the wall and I''m not sure about where else we could fit it and what we could put its place.
 

movie zombie

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given the economy, given you have had job offers but not where you live, given your home is clean, cute, and liveable, i wouldn''t do the kitchen. one never gets the $ from a remodel back 100% and in this economy it will be worse. renting your lovely home out should you need to move and not be able to sell will open you to having to remodel again if someone trashes it.

however, i''d do something with the outside area and make that inviting and useable.

i have yet to start any home project that didn''t turn up some unforeseen problem that required more $......but its your time, your $, your risk. and its really hard not to want to do it! good luck.

mz
 

pennquaker09

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Date: 2/10/2009 12:31:25 AM
Author: Clairitek
Date: 2/10/2009 12:13:02 AM

Author: heraanderson

Date: 2/10/2009 12:01:26 AM


Author: pennquaker09


The fridge needs to move to the upper left hand corner.


That might be breaking the kitchen working triangle (If I understand your suggestion correctly). May be better across from the sink though.


I can see what you mean about moving it but I don't think thats in the budget. Its recessed in the wall and I'm not sure about where else we could fit it and what we could put its place.


I went back and looked and I noticed there wouldn't be enough space because of the window.

I can tell you about cabinet sizes. Do you plan on getting the off the shelf cabinetry from Lowes or Home Depot or? I don't think your kitchen is very big and you'd probably be better served looking for someone to build you some cabinetry. it doesn't cast nearly as much as you'd think.
 

Clairitek

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Date: 2/10/2009 12:31:44 AM
Author: movie zombie
given the economy, given you have had job offers but not where you live, given your home is clean, cute, and liveable, i wouldn''t do the kitchen. one never gets the $ from a remodel back 100% and in this economy it will be worse. renting your lovely home out should you need to move and not be able to sell will open you to having to remodel again if someone trashes it.

however, i''d do something with the outside area and make that inviting and useable.

i have yet to start any home project that didn''t turn up some unforeseen problem that required more $......but its your time, your $, your risk. and its really hard not to want to do it! good luck.
mz

You hit the nail on the head MZ with that comment in bold. We can get the money easily. Its hard not to want to do it.

Thanks for the thoughts MZ. I''m really so torn. I knew I could on the folks here at PS to bring me down to earth out of my kitchen remodel euphoric haze. You''d think that spending all this money on our wedding next year would give me my project fix, but no. My real estate agent said to go for it and that you can''t go wrong with a modest kitchen or bathroom remodel. Meh... This won''t happen for another couple of months anyways so we shall see how we feel once the money is in our hot little hands.
 

Clairitek

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Date: 2/10/2009 12:38:19 AM
Author: pennquaker09
Date: 2/10/2009 12:31:25 AM

Author: Clairitek

Date: 2/10/2009 12:13:02 AM


Author: heraanderson

Date: 2/10/2009 12:01:26 AM

Author: pennquaker09

The fridge needs to move to the upper left hand corner.

That might be breaking the kitchen working triangle (If I understand your suggestion correctly). May be better across from the sink though.
I can see what you mean about moving it but I don''t think thats in the budget. Its recessed in the wall and I''m not sure about where else we could fit it and what we could put its place.
I went back and looked and I noticed there wouldn''t be enough space because of the window.

I can tell you about cabinet sizes. Do you plan on getting the off the shelf cabinetry from Lowes or Home Depot or? I don''t think your kitchen is very big and you''d probably be better served looking for someone to build you some cabinetry. it doesn''t cast nearly as much as you''d think.

I''ll definitely look into it, just need to get a few referrals around the area. If we can do it for $2000 I think that it would be worth it but too much more than that it would start to eat into the budget of other items.
 

lyra

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Date: 2/9/2009 11:17:57 PM
Author: Clairitek
I was doing some thinking about the kitchen today after I posted this. I decided 2 things...

1) I think that we should try to leave the stone where it is and just suck it up with a new electric stove. We can really rationalize buying a new one because the current one sucks and it turns itself off sometimes mid-cooking. Totally frustrating when you are trying to cook a Thanksgiving Dinner! I think we should leave it where it is to avoid having to pay to put in a new 220V outlet (I assume that electric stoves work on that kind of outlet). The other thing would be (as some of you have pointed out) that I might need another outlet for the microwave. Since that wall is already wired it would be a LOT more simple to leave things where they are.

2) Another point for leaving the stove where it is and building around it is that I think there is a benefit to having the stove and sink relatively close to each other with ample counter space between them to do prep work. My father said that if he could design their kitchen again he would put the sink and stove in the same counter.

I'll redraw what I'm thinking now.

I do intend on getting a quote from a contractor for the wall demolition. I am nervous about taking it down because of the utilities that could be running through it. My friend who suggested just taking a sledge hammer to it is really brave when it comes to home improvement.

Oh yes- as for the ceiling... all of our walls are plaster. THe ceiling repair might be the FIRST time that I'll be grateful for plaster. The ceiling in the dining room is stuccoed and I think that will be easier than a drywall ceiling to patch up. The ceiling in the kitchen has a wooden board over it and I'm not sure what is underneath it but I am tempted to just leave it because I like the look.
Moving the stove outlet would be expensive, true. Still, look into the gas line hook-up. We have both options available. If your gas service (assuming you have it in your house already) is close by, it really may not be bad at all.

Plastering a ceiling is not easy! My DH suggested putting in a "fake" beam where you take down the wall so there is no ceiling repair necessary. It would be purely decorative. I think this would be a great option.

Yes, when you take down a wall, there very well might be electrical to deal with. You can carefully remove the plaster to reveal what you're dealing with though. No sledgehammers necessary.
2.gif


I think some people are overestimating the size of your kitchen. I don't think the fridge is really that far away from everything, is it? I think you are right, budget-wise, to keep costs down wherever possible. If you're tiling the floor, you will have to remove your existing cabinets first, or they won't match your new cabinets. It's incorrect to tile up to the bottom of the cabinets. Tile should go underneath the cabinets. That means a period of time where you will have *no* lower cabinets or anything in the room at all, to level the floor and get the tiling done. If you're not intending on doing this, then you will be doing it incorrectly, but it can still be done that way if you have to. You'd then be tiling after you install the new cabinets I guess. Actually, we have no choice but to do it this way in our kitchen too, as we're taking up the old tile which runs underneath the cabinets.
 

movie zombie

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while the correct way is to remove cabinets and lay tile under them, we didn''t do that due to expense of removing the cabinetry with granite countertop and resetting them after the tiling was completed.....the molding covers the joint between the floor and the cabinet wall and no one knows the difference but us. our floor plan is very open and part of the kitchen has a long island shared with the family room. even from that side it isn''t obvious that the tile does not extend under the cabinets. it looks like it goes on forever.

mz
 

MichelleCarmen

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Messages
15,880
Hi,

I''m not sure what is wrong with your current kitchen. It may not be your "dream" kitchen, but considering you''re still in school and do not have long-term plans made, it seems like it''ll make due for now.

Also, do you have student loans and other debt? Do you really want to add extra $ onto all that? It all adds up so quickly.
 

Clairitek

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Date: 2/10/2009 12:55:22 PM
Author: MC
Hi,

I''m not sure what is wrong with your current kitchen. It may not be your ''dream'' kitchen, but considering you''re still in school and do not have long-term plans made, it seems like it''ll make due for now.

Also, do you have student loans and other debt? Do you really want to add extra $ onto all that? It all adds up so quickly.

Yes, you are right. We can make do with this kitchen for now. We both just yearn for something more.

My biggest complaint about my current kitchen is that there is hardly any storage or counter space. Really just a few square feet. It feels closed off and small because of the wall. I''m a fan of open spaces.

We aren''t the typical mid-20-somethings. I actually don''t have any debt (no car loans, student loans, etc) and neither does FI. We are very much in the black. I went to undergrad for free and then I''ve been paid to go to grad school. FI got some scholarship, his parents helped, and then he worked his behind off to make enough to cover the rest of his living and tuition expenses and still had some savings when he graduated. Hes a frugal man.
3.gif
 

MichelleCarmen

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I know. We all yearn for something more! lol That''s the American way-of-life.

Sounds like you''re financially able to make this workable, so my only hesitation would be how long you''ll be in the house. DH and I entirely remodeled the kitchen of a the house before the last one we had (two houses ago!) and planned to stay there for a few years. Purchased the top-of-the-line gas range, nice fridge, new cabinets, etc., (plus put in new flooring) however changed our plans and turned the house into a rental after only 9 months! Luckily the renter took good care of it and because the market was flourishing at the time, we turned a profit when selling (plus sold it by owner), our decision ended up being a good one. Now, there is no way I''d put any money into any upgrades. We won''t even replace the carpet in our condo/townhome because we''re unsure what our future holds.
 

Clairitek

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Date: 2/10/2009 11:55:50 AM
Author: lyra

Moving the stove outlet would be expensive, true. Still, look into the gas line hook-up. We have both options available. If your gas service (assuming you have it in your house already) is close by, it really may not be bad at all.

Plastering a ceiling is not easy! My DH suggested putting in a ''fake'' beam where you take down the wall so there is no ceiling repair necessary. It would be purely decorative. I think this would be a great option.

Yes, when you take down a wall, there very well might be electrical to deal with. You can carefully remove the plaster to reveal what you''re dealing with though. No sledgehammers necessary.
2.gif


I think some people are overestimating the size of your kitchen. I don''t think the fridge is really that far away from everything, is it? I think you are right, budget-wise, to keep costs down wherever possible. If you''re tiling the floor, you will have to remove your existing cabinets first, or they won''t match your new cabinets. It''s incorrect to tile up to the bottom of the cabinets. Tile should go underneath the cabinets. That means a period of time where you will have *no* lower cabinets or anything in the room at all, to level the floor and get the tiling done. If you''re not intending on doing this, then you will be doing it incorrectly, but it can still be done that way if you have to. You''d then be tiling after you install the new cabinets I guess. Actually, we have no choice but to do it this way in our kitchen too, as we''re taking up the old tile which runs underneath the cabinets.

I like the idea of the decorative beam, especially since the ceilings are quite different from dining room to kitchen. That will make it seem like two distinct areas instead of a mish-mosh of space.

I didn''t know that about the tiling (I know I seem clueless, I promise I will do my homework before signing on the dotted line). I''d rather do things right and doing the flooring before the cabinets go in will help us get everything as level as can be and make hanging the cabinets easier. I realize that with a 60-65 year old house (as Italia pointed out) that things aren''t always square and level.

I''d like to avoid the sledgehammer all together if possible. It really does make the most sense to leave the stove almost where it is, installed with a proper counter around it and just take the section of wall there down to half-height. The tricky part of that is will be creating the stool seating area on the other side. It will have to be higher than the counter level on the kitchen side or else people sitting in the dining room would see the back of the stove.
14.gif
I know it can be done with some ingenuity and careful planning
 

Clairitek

Ideal_Rock
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Messages
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Date: 2/10/2009 3:41:20 PM
Author: MC
I know. We all yearn for something more! lol That''s the American way-of-life.

Sounds like you''re financially able to make this workable, so my only hesitation would be how long you''ll be in the house. DH and I entirely remodeled the kitchen of a the house before the last one we had (two houses ago!) and planned to stay there for a few years. Purchased the top-of-the-line gas range, nice fridge, new cabinets, etc., (plus put in new flooring) however changed our plans and turned the house into a rental after only 9 months! Luckily the renter took good care of it and because the market was flourishing at the time, we turned a profit when selling (plus sold it by owner), our decision ended up being a good one. Now, there is no way I''d put any money into any upgrades. We won''t even replace the carpet in our condo/townhome because we''re unsure what our future holds.

I totally see where you''re coming from and I think you for your concern. FI and I have the same worries and we are considering them.
 

ChargerGrrl

Ideal_Rock
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C-tek, i saw this in one of my daily email trades and thought of you!

DIY Network helps viewers with kitchen renovations in a new do-it-yourself series Kitchen Impossible debuting March 4 at 9p. Host Marc Bartolomeo shows viewers tips on building a dream kitchen from laying tile to moving walls to increase space. Five episodes air each Wednesday at 9p through March followed by eight additional new ones airing this spring.

too funny that in my earlier post i suggested you visit that network's website!
 

Clairitek

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Messages
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Date: 2/10/2009 4:12:17 PM
Author: ChargerGrrl
C-tek, i saw this in one of my daily email trades and thought of you!

DIY Network helps viewers with kitchen renovations in a new do-it-yourself series Kitchen Impossible debuting March 4 at 9p. Host Marc Bartolomeo shows viewers tips on building a dream kitchen from laying tile to moving walls to increase space. Five episodes air each Wednesday at 9p through March followed by eight additional new ones airing this spring.

too funny that in my earlier post i suggested you visit that network''s website!

Wow thanks ChargerGrrl!! This is so helpful. Is DIY Network a TV network or is this all online?

I appreciate the heads up so much!
 

Elmorton

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Hey, I know you''re still thinking about the kitchen - but man, I''d re-do that basement in a heartbeat - that''s actually the next item on our list (and frankly, I''m super jealous of that random toilet, because we want to put in an extra bathroom in our basement and it''s not going to be cheap). Finishing the basement will be a little less labor intensive, probably easier to stick to a budget, AND the part of your house that is torn up won''t be a major living space. I''m just thinking that as a first DIY, a kitchen is not what I''d do.
 

lyra

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Claritek, I just realized we haven''t (like how it''s "we"?) addressed the issue of having an exhaust fan for over the stove!!!
6.gif
This would have been solved with having an over the stove microwave/exhaust unit. It may not be your building code/safety code there, but it is here, there must be an exhaust fan. How are you thinking about addressing this issue? Eep.

I was also assuming you''d be leaving a half wall up behind the stove if you leave it where it is. Maybe you''re better off moving the stove to an outside wall, which would make the venting easier. I suppose more expensive too. But still, it''s something to consider and decide about.
 

Clairitek

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Date: 2/10/2009 8:51:54 PM
Author: Elmorton
Hey, I know you''re still thinking about the kitchen - but man, I''d re-do that basement in a heartbeat - that''s actually the next item on our list (and frankly, I''m super jealous of that random toilet, because we want to put in an extra bathroom in our basement and it''s not going to be cheap). Finishing the basement will be a little less labor intensive, probably easier to stick to a budget, AND the part of your house that is torn up won''t be a major living space. I''m just thinking that as a first DIY, a kitchen is not what I''d do.

It would be great to have a nicer play area down there for all of our stuff but we get water in there when it rains heavily. To be honest I''d rather take on the chore of removing a wall then dealing with drainage of an old house. Thankfully we have a drain in the floor and its slightly graded so it drains eventually. FI and I did think about it though.
 

Elmorton

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Yeah, waterproofing a basement isn''t a DIY job...I think we were quoted something like $2500-3k to do it. But once that part is done, everything else would be pretty easy to do yourself.
 

Clairitek

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Date: 2/10/2009 8:58:33 PM
Author: lyra
Claritek, I just realized we haven''t (like how it''s ''we''?) addressed the issue of having an exhaust fan for over the stove!!!
6.gif
This would have been solved with having an over the stove microwave/exhaust unit. It may not be your building code/safety code there, but it is here, there must be an exhaust fan. How are you thinking about addressing this issue? Eep.

I was also assuming you''d be leaving a half wall up behind the stove if you leave it where it is. Maybe you''re better off moving the stove to an outside wall, which would make the venting easier. I suppose more expensive too. But still, it''s something to consider and decide about.

Just realized I didn''t respond to this...
I am not sure what the laws are in PA but I''ll have to check that out! I didn''t grow up with a vent above the stove (in RI) so it isn''t always something that I think of. I realize that it could help a lot with cooking odors and particles in the air. I do hate how stinky/smoky our kitchen can get if you don''t watch whats cooking.
 

PilsnPinkysMom

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Bump...

Claritek, wondering what you and your FI have decided on this reno... Still planning on moving forward, or postponing it for a little while longer?
 
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