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avro1 01-10-2010 01:55 PM

My first kitchen reno....any tips?
Well it's actually my second reno but the first was so long ago that I won't count it.

Okay, the house was built in 53 and the kitchen still has the original plywood cabinets, 50s counter top and flooring. The cabinets will be set in a 8 x 11 "L" shape. I will be replacing the cabinets, counter top and flooring as well as adding a dishwasher and over the stove type of microwave with exhaust fan...maybe a garburator too.

The intent for this reno is mostly for resale because I'd like to sell and move to a bigger place in a couple years so I'd like to get the best bang for my buck yet still be attractive to potential buyers. I would like to use white appliances but wonder if that will hurt the resale? I'm undeceided on white or a light wood (like maple) cabinets with the white appliances. I think all white would be too much and not very attractive...any thoughts?

Also, is there anything that I should consider doing with the wiring, lighting or plumbing when the cabinets are out? The existing wiring is the old two wire(no ground) as was used back in the 50s. I know I don't have to change anything if I don't touch it but I'll at least have to add one circuit for the dishwasher and maybe for the microwave. Do these have to be dedicated circuits? What about a garburator?

Is the wiring code the same across Canada or is each province/city different? Im in Calgary.

I know this may be alot of questions but I'm still in the planning stage so any advice is appreciated.


user1007 01-10-2010 07:30 PM

Can't get away without a ground wire here so I would upgrade that. And I cannot believe you can argue you don't have to touh it if you are doing a full renovation and otherwise changing anything major? Kind of scary to me. Electrical work requires a pro to sign-off and an inspection here too. A good idea in my opinion although some disagree.

We need, for good reason, GCFIs on kitchen circuits around countertops and water just in case something goes wrong and someone with barefeet tries to get toast stuck in the toaster out with a knife or and becomes the closest electricity ground or the undercounter TV falls into a sink full of water will hands are in it washing dishes.

Microwave and frig should be on their own circuits. Dishwasher and disposal on another I suppose.

Not sure what to say about cabinet and appliance color choices. Trends change. Stainless steel seems to be the current desired look here for appliances. I tend to be specing lighter woods like light oak or hickory more than dark walnuts and cherry or rosewood these days. Some clients insist on spending a blazing fortune on drawer and cabinet pulls.

Any real estate agent will tell you that just about any money, within reason, you plunk into a kitchen, you get back out a couple of times over. And a nice kitchen can sell a house. I would add whatever you think appropriate for lighting. Dump any florescent fixtures. Add canisters or track over work surfaces, etc.

With all the kitchen appliances tending to show up in kitchens, a few extra outlets along the countertop are welcomed I think. Like I say, you should put a GCFI somewhere on each countertop outlet circuit.

As for plumbing, I would replace or at least look closely at all your supply and drain lines when you have easy access to them. Replace your cut-offs as a matter of course? You will have to re-arrange drains to accomodate the dishwasher and disposal. The dishwasher will need a supply line too. Map and rough all that out before you install the dishwasher and disposal and you will save yourself a lot of trouble.

Have fun! Good luck.

avro1 01-19-2010 09:49 PM

Thanks sdsester.

I used your advice to look into various aspects of a kitchen reno and ended up with even more questions but I think I'm starting to get a plan now.

I wasn't going to upgrade the wiring because up here there is no need to just because the cabinets and flooring is being changed. However with the added circuits for the dishwasher and microwave and the easy access from having the cabinets out I'll upgrade the kitchen outlets along the counter at the same time.

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