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What buyers want in kitchen and bath design
Old 01-17-2013, 09:21 AM   #1
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What buyers want in kitchen and bath design

Since we're about to completely update our kitchen, for resale more than our own needs, I've been doing a lot of online research. For anyone else interested, I thought this was a good and reasonably current summary (note: I prefer data more than narrative). Just one table shown below. Just FWIW...

Exclusive research: What buyers want in kitchen and bath design
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Old 01-17-2013, 09:30 AM   #2
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Big surprise to me that ~30% included a fireplace/hearth in the kitchen - more popular than a wall oven or breakfast bar.

Wonder how that list would change segmented by different regions of the US....
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Old 01-17-2013, 09:32 AM   #3
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Wonder how that list would change segmented by different regions of the US....
Good point, I should've mentioned that, so thanks. And I am sure it depends in part on price point as well as regions. In some neighborhoods a swimming pool for the horses may be expected, though not in the kitchen or bath...
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Old 01-17-2013, 09:39 AM   #4
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In some neighborhoods a swimming pool for the horses may be expected, though not in the kitchen or bath...
Water polo?
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Old 01-17-2013, 09:55 AM   #5
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Thanks for posting that list, MP.

We are in the middle of a gut kitchen remodel because we decided to not move (it needed doing either way but we picked what we wanted to use). But still good to see we didn't make too many wrong decisions based on the research so no future buyer would be too turned off.

I know two people with high end kitchens who both said their little prep sinks are never used. We didn't really consider one so we were glad to hear we probably would not miss it.

Neither of them (one in a cold climate) has a hearth or fireplace in their kitchens.
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Old 01-17-2013, 09:58 AM   #6
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Food prep area? I thought the kitchen was the food prep area. What are they talking about?
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Kitchen Remodels -- Tis the Season
Old 01-17-2013, 11:57 AM   #7
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Kitchen Remodels -- Tis the Season

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Originally Posted by Bestwifeever View Post
Thanks for posting that list, MP.

We are in the middle of a gut kitchen remodel because we decided to not move (it needed doing either way but we picked what we wanted to use). But still good to see we didn't make too many wrong decisions based on the research so no future buyer would be too turned off.
.
We are right behind you, Bestwifeever, in redoing a kitchen because we finally decided not to move.

We just reviewed a kitchen remodel bid for 2 options: 1) keep the current footprint and just change out cabinets, countertops, and backsplash or 2) spread out a bit by moving a couple of walls to add some cabinet space, counter space, and an island.

I have noticed that the houses in our modest little neighborhood don't do much with changing things around in kitchen remodels.They simply replace/update the cabinets and counters and install stainless appliances.

With a new kitchen, and the bathrooms being similarly, simply updated, they are not on the market very long at all, and the prices make my head spin!
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Old 01-17-2013, 12:34 PM   #8
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We remodeled our kitchen three years ago when we moved in. Going to remodel it again. Not for me as I think it's OK as galley kitchens go. When we did the remodel three years ago, we gutted the house. All new cabinets, stainless steel appliances, tile floors, tiled backsplash, undercabinet lighting, etc. The cabinet maker also built the "solid surface" countertops with a double bowl sink molded in. Two problems with this that now require changing (according to my wife). She hates the galley kitchen and the countertops look cheap by comparison to the rest of the kitchen.

So, she wants to go to the open floorplan look or the greatroom concept. I agree that it would look better, make the kitchen appear larger have a "modern" look. And, granite countertops. Almost all the model homes we see have the greatroom design. Now, it's going to be another project. I love the idea but hate changing for the sake of changing. I could live with what we have. Momma ain't happy, nobody happy!!
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Old 01-17-2013, 01:24 PM   #9
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That list cracks me up - food prep area, I assume, means counter space. Obviously that's important.

But more important than quantity of counter space - is that it MUST be granite.

I'm surprised stainless appliances weren't mentioned - unless you go down to professional grade range/cooktop.

We redid our 1960's original kitchen last year.
We did it in true LBYM style...
- kept the cabinets, but repainted and put new hardware on. In the 1960's they built full size, solid wood cabinets... not soffets, lots of useable space. Why pay for an inferior product.
- replaced the original formica with stainless steel counters. Considered doing a quartz. Never wanted granite... it will be dated in 10 years... so we went with our tastes, not the current trend.
- Moved the wall oven to be more functional and to allow the convection microwave (that previously was using up counter space) to have a nook right above the oven. Looks like a double oven now. But it's not. Replaced our cooktop with a bertazonni freestanding gas range/oven... But we are avid cooks and that was the right combination for us between btu's and price.
- Kept the backsplash simple and "timeless" (as timeless as any thing can be) with white subway.

All in - flooring, new window, paint/hardware, less than $10k. Helps that we did the labor 100% on our own.

Best decision we made - the stainless counter tops. I can roll out pie dough on 'em. Hubby makes homemade pizza dough on 'em. They are a breeze to clean with just a little diluted vinegar. There's a reason professional kitchens use stainless. Because it's EASY to clean. Live's to short to worry about detailing your granite or trying to get citrus or wine stains out of your marble.
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Old 01-17-2013, 01:35 PM   #10
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So, she wants to go to the open floorplan look or the greatroom concept. !!
I hate open floor plans! Unless I was single. Noise goes everywhere. My house has two living areas and a kitchen and dining room open to each other. It really limits what you can do with the space when you can hear everything all over the house.

Why not open up the bathrooms too so we can hear whats going on there?
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Old 01-17-2013, 01:36 PM   #11
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We're planning on:
  • Same footprint
  • New natural cherry Shaker style cabinets
  • Quartz countertops, med-dark grey or tan/black
  • Porcelain or ceramic floor tiles
  • Stainless steel appliances (though I've heard many owners say 'never again')
  • Misc new glass tile backsplash, double SS sink, disposer, brushed nickel faucets & hardware, moldings, light fixtures, receptacles, wall paint
I haven't gotten any bids yet, but I'm sure I'll be unpleasantly 'surprised'. DIY for some work may come into play...

I hate doing this knowing it won't be for us for long. Our choices are driven by resale and reasonable cost first and foremost.
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Old 01-17-2013, 03:48 PM   #12
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One thing I didn't see on the list is having large drawers rather than door cabinets for the majority of the lower cabinets. I have all of my pots, pans, china, and most serving dishes in drawers. They are much easier to find and keeping china in a lower cabinet drawer is much safer as we age (no lifting heavy breakable plates up into the wall cabinets). Pull-outs are mentioned, and I do have those in one cabinet for small appliances, but for pots, pans, and dishes, drawers are much much better.
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Old 01-17-2013, 03:57 PM   #13
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I hate open floor plans! Unless I was single. Noise goes everywhere. My house has two living areas and a kitchen and dining room open to each other. It really limits what you can do with the space when you can hear everything all over the house.

Why not open up the bathrooms too so we can hear whats going on there?

Heck, ours is not even an open floorplan and I can hear everything going on in the kitchen... banging of pots and pans, her grinding her coffee etc. etc... I would hate to think of what it would sound like if it were open...

To be fair, I do have a line of sight from the couch to just the edge of the kitchen... and she will warn me when she is about to do something that is louder than normal so I can pause the TV....
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Old 01-17-2013, 03:59 PM   #14
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One thing I didn't see on the list is having large drawers rather than door cabinets for the majority of the lower cabinets. I have all of my pots, pans, china, and most serving dishes in drawers. They are much easier to find and keeping china in a lower cabinet drawer is much safer as we age (no lifting heavy breakable plates up into the wall cabinets). Pull-outs are mentioned, and I do have those in one cabinet for small appliances, but for pots, pans, and dishes, drawers are much much better.

Are your pull outs a spring loaded thing My sister had her kitchen and has some of her appliances mounted on spring loaded shelves so all you do is pull them up and use them... she really likes this for her heavy blender...
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:27 PM   #15
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We're planning on:
  • Same footprint
  • New natural cherry Shaker style cabinets
  • Quartz countertops, med-dark grey or tan/black
  • Porcelain or ceramic floor tiles
  • Stainless steel appliances (though I've heard many owners say 'never again')
  • Misc new glass tile backsplash, double SS sink, disposer, brushed nickel faucets & hardware, moldings, light fixtures, receptacles, wall paint
I haven't gotten any bids yet, but I'm sure I'll be unpleasantly 'surprised'. DIY for some work may come into play...

I hate doing this knowing it won't be for us for long. Our choices are driven by resale and reasonable cost first and foremost.
Here's my tip on stainless.
Forget the fancy stainless polishers. I don't like them because the smell chemically and they're expensive.
I use diluted white vinegar, with a drop or two of soap, in a spray bottle. Basically about 3/4's vinegar, 1/4 water. I sometimes put a drop or two of tea tree oil in it - just to get the anti-fungal properties. I keep it in a spray bottle.
It cuts through food, crud, fingerprints, etc. More effective than the cleaners I used to use.
It's totally non-toxic.
It's dirt cheap.

Just a spray bottle and a cotton towel. (Dish towel, wash cloth, whatever you want.)

(I use the same solution for my entire kitchen, my bathroom, cleaning off the whiteboards, etc.)

With a stainless stove and with stainless counters... I needed to have something easy and cheap.
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:29 PM   #16
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Most of that stuff is way above and beyond my level of desires, it seem! Well, except the garbage disposal which I really should have put in. Here are the other things I would want if I was remodeling my kitchen just for myself. As you can tell from my list, I have been thinking about doing this, probably in the next year or two.

* It would be fun to have more ELECTRICAL SOCKETS near the counters. When remodeling an older home, that is something to think of. These days we need more than just 2-3 places to plug in all our gizmos. One socket every 3-4 feet is not overdoing it IMO.
* I already have it, but I must mention that I love my granite.
* I also like my double sink with Kohler pull-out spray faucet, but it would be neat if it also included one of those instant hot water gizmos.

* I want to put in sliding shelves in my lower cabinets, but since they are non-standard size that project got temporarily "shelved", so to speak? Even better, I like MBAustin's ideas of having more deep drawers instead of lower cabinets.

* I'd also like to have a big pantry cabinet for food storage. I bought a free standing one, but somehow it got filled up with other stuff/junk so maybe all I need to do is clean it out.

Guess that's about it. My kitchen is relatively small, galley style, and opens up to the den. That is perfect for a single person.
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:36 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rodi View Post
Here's my tip on stainless.
Forget the fancy stainless polishers. I don't like them because the smell chemically and they're expensive.
I use diluted white vinegar, with a drop or two of soap, in a spray bottle. Basically about 3/4's vinegar, 1/4 water. I sometimes put a drop or two of tea tree oil in it - just to get the anti-fungal properties. I keep it in a spray bottle.
It cuts through food, crud, fingerprints, etc. More effective than the cleaners I used to use.
It's totally non-toxic.
It's dirt cheap.

Just a spray bottle and a cotton towel. (Dish towel, wash cloth, whatever you want.)

(I use the same solution for my entire kitchen, my bathroom, cleaning off the whiteboards, etc.)

With a stainless stove and with stainless counters... I needed to have something easy and cheap.
Thanks for the details.
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:42 PM   #18
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Our kitchen is pretty much "state of the art" because the house if fairly new (built in 2010), and the developer was very focused on all the key desirable kitchen characteristics.

But DH absolutely refused that they put in a garbage disposal. He made them take it back out. I think he had two many bad memories of garbage disposal maintenance in our previous house. We use the disposal switch to turn on a little night light under the sink

Anyone buying our house can add one back in.

No fireplace/hearth in South Texas though - no sireeee!
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:44 PM   #19
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Thanks for the details.
+2. That's what actual SS owners tell me, yet it seems it's still what buyers want or expect. So I hope to buy one of the newer so called smudge-resistant finishes, though it may just be marketing hype for all I know.
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:48 PM   #20
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But DH absolutely refused that they put in a garbage disposal. He made them take it back out. I think he had two many bad memories of garbage disposal maintenance in our previous house.
You really have me curious as to what it was you guys were sticking down there to cause problems.

When we built our house back in 98 we specified a higher-end (as in more powerful) disposal and haven't had one problem with it in the 15 years we've been here.
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