A kitchen remodel is truly the most effective catalyst for improving how your family functions together. Here in Philadelphia, most houses were built long before best practice design rules for families who live in and around their kitchens.
Unhappy configurations and bad flow are inherited through past kitchen remodels which never addressed design problems for a true re-assessment of current needs. A kitchen with a good flow should support cooking, working at home, and family connection.
Perhaps another minor kitchen face-lift is not going to cut it this time around. What these kitchens actually need is a more thoughtful assessment of conditions and homeowner needs that result in cost options that can be used to transform the awkward spaces into comfortable, working kitchens with modern functionality.
While every kitchen renovation is different, it is important to understand the typical investment in a transformative project, and the average costs for any major kitchen remodel in Philadelphia and its Main Line Suburbs.
Average kitchen remodeling costs will vary significantly depending on the number of walls that you plan to modify, whether those walls are interior or exterior, load-bearing or non-structural. Materials selection has a large impact, as does the square footage of the work areas and the difficulty of access to the project.
A final, important cost variable is scale - how much other work is being done in the immediate area: For example, a kitchen priced as part of a whole house renovation will be 20% less expensive because of the increased efficiency of having all trades working simultaneously on related tasks. That can amount to $30,000 on an average kitchen of high quality.
The average costs listed here were compiled based on information from the 2020 Cost vs. Value Report (adjusted for our geographic area) and cost aggregating websites like Houzz and HomeAdvisor. This data, combined with our current and past projects, helps us give you a reasonable ballpark estimate to use in your initial planning.
Unlike a minor kitchen remodel that only refreshes primary finishes while keeping the same layout, a mid-range kitchen remodel allows you to transform your existing cabinet configuration and redesign it to create a workflow that performs best for you. A mid-range kitchen remodel is intended for a moderate sized, outdated kitchen between 100 - 210 square feet.
Selection allowances in this range include high-quality options with high durability ratings but no luxury elements. Depending on the layout, this level of kitchen renovation could include a few additional elements outside of the immediate kitchen renovation areas, such as window or patio door replacement. Most options include basic level semi-custom cabinetry. Kitchen remodels with a slightly higher investment range may include some luxury add-on options such as quartz countertops, tile floors, or a walk-in pantry.
For those families who spend much of their time in the kitchen, a major upscale kitchen remodel is an excellent choice. This type of project is our most popular because it typically involves an expanded view of a kitchen as it connects to other common family areas on the first floor and may introduce larger glass openings to bring in sunlight. These layout options can be more flexible in this range and will usually include higher-end and custom designed solutions, unique to your home's design requirements.
Cabinetry in this category may be either high end semi-custom or custom made by a cabinet and millwork shop. The cabinet designs are furniture grade quality and will likely have unique and beautiful storage solutions which are offered during the design process and then custom crafted specifically for your home and for your unique needs. At this level of creativity we can provide almost any material or design idea that you can dream up or show us from your Pinterest or Houzz idea book.
Any architectural form is possible at this level but some styles are more labor intensive and can only be accomplished well with this higher budget. For example, modern style cabinets often require this investment level because of the tight tolerances required and the clean lines with small spaces between doors, drawers and appliances. The appliance package in this category can involve commercial-grade stoves, wall ovens, separate countertop cooktops, wine refrigerators and high performance range hoods.
At this price point, there is also more freedom to splurge on the important elements of the design and the selections that matter to you. A very high-end kitchen will likely exceed the manageable range but the budget will depend on what else you are trying to accomplish within the scope of the kitchen renovation. With lower budgets, you can still expect a mainstream countertop options including a variety of granite and quartz. On the higher end, look for the more expensive grades of granite and quartz, including custom elements like waterfall edges and full stone backsplashes for a truly unique appearance.
Most kitchen remodeling cost estimates assume that you have about 200 square feet to work with - but if you are working with a smaller footprint, you will have fewer options for your renovation layout. Sometimes even having 200 square feet may not be enough for your ideal vision. In either of these cases, you might consider planning for a kitchen bump-out to increase your available space.
A bump-out extends the size of your home by a small amount. It is similar to a home addition (often requiring full foundation), but since you are not adding an entirely new room, a bump-out involves a smaller investment. In the context of your kitchen remodel, adding 20 to 30 percent of the total cost might not be a significant extension of your budget. On the other hand, it might give you all the space you need to make your kitchen dream come true. If you were considering moving to a new home to get a bigger kitchen, this may be a reasonable cost alternative (moving is expensive!).
When you begin planning a kitchen remodel in Philadelphia, you should consider your potential for increasing resale value as a a pay-back on your investment. A kitchen remodel is often the most significant home improvement you can make and most buyers will prioritize the condition and execution of a kitchen when valuing a home for sale.
According to authorities like Houzz and HomeAdvisor, you can expect to receive about 45 to 75 percent of your kitchen investment return in resale value. Keep in mind that this depends heavily on comparison kitchens in your neighborhood. For example, if you opt for lower grade countertops and cabinetry while everyone else now has renovated using quartz counters and semi custom cabinets, your actual resale value may not be as high.
Also consider the fact that outdated styles will negatively impact your kitchen's appeal to future buyers. A timeless architectural style, color and well conceived working layout is a must, so make sure you have a qualified design partner before you build.
It's most important to get the total costs for your kitchen remodel BEFORE you start renovating rather than starting construction prematurely. This will require that you complete a comprehensive design which should include a thorough assessment of existing conditions in your home. The final cost of your kitchen remodel will always depend on your existing kitchen, your unique needs and desires, and the choices you make for materials and equipment.
The good news is that starting with a professional remodeling firm like Bellweather Design-Build ensures that you will receive a complete estimate with the details considered. To find out how we can take all the stress out of your kitchen remodel, talk to a remodeling specialist.
(The figures above are partially taken from the Remodeling 2020 Cost vs. Value Report [www.costvsvalue.com] for the Philadelphia, PA, area. © 2020 Hanley Wood Media Inc. You can download the complete data from the Remodeling 2020 Cost vs. Value Report free of charge at www.costvsvalue.com.
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