For today’s post, I’m thrilled to finally share our kitchen renovation! It was by far the biggest house project we have ever undertaken and WILL ever undertake. It was an enormous project, a ton of work, super disruptive, and yet still- it was totally worth it. Here are a few common questions that I’m asked and their answers – then scroll down to see all of the before, during, and after photos!
-How long did it take? This answer has multiple parts. The main answer would be ten weeks, because that’s how long we were without a functioning kitchen. This was the time between demo and the installation of the cabinets, sink, and countertops. At that point, we started using our new kitchen (yay!), but it was still very rough. Two months after the initial ten weeks, it started to look more finished. And eight months after we demoed, almost exactly, we passed our final inspection received our occupancy permit.
-How did you manage without a kitchen? It was hard, but not impossible! We set up a temporary “kitchen” (fridge, microwave, and table) in our living room, and for ten weeks we ate a lot of crock pot (liners are the best!) and instant pot meals, along with some grilling, and went through a lot of paper products. The worst part was washing dishes in our tiny bathroom sink!
-What exactly did you change about the kitchen in your renovation? Short answer, everything but the floors (they are already hardwood)! Long answer: new cabinets, new fixtures, new countertops, new sink, took out the wall between the kitchen and dining room and added a peninsula, added a coffee bar in the dining room, added a backsplash, added a new window facing our backyard to bring in more light, took out the soffits (more on that below!), painted everything.
-Wait, you did all of this yourselves? Almost – yes! My husband worked so, so hard on this project, both taking time off from work and putting in late nights after working a full day at his job. He also received a lot of help from his father, which we’re so grateful for! The two of them did all of the work except for the drywall and countertop installation.
-What was the hardest part of the renovation? Without a doubt, all of the structural work. You see those lovely (gag) soffits below in the old kitchen? Those had to be knocked down, and because the one on the outside wall had a supporting beam in it, my husband and FIL had to (1) pour a new concrete footer (2) install twelve new joists running the length of the ceiling and (3) put up a new supporting beam in place of the old one they’d taken out. The structural work was a TON of work, I cannot emphasize that enough! I had no idea all that had to be done until I saw how much they were doing and all of the time it took. It was insane.
-Was it expensive? Yes, you better believe it! But we did save tens of thousands of dollars by doing it ourselves.
-Do you love it? YES YES YES. I love it so much! We use it all the time and truly, it is night and day from our old kitchen. It is so much lighter, which was the #1 complaint we had about the old kitchen (it was terribly dark). It’s also so very much more open, and I love that you can see across our entire downstairs now. I love the granite countertops, farmhouse sink, new window, and coffee bar!
-Do you ever plan on undertaking a project of this magnitude again? That’s easy. NO! 🙂