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Old 02-26-2017, 01:41 PM   #1
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Kitchen Update Project Decisions


The scope of my kitchen update project is to update the existing countertops, create an eat-in bar (by adding a 12" overhang to the existing peninsula) and add a tiled backsplash. I am also considering creating a small wine fridge/cooler dry bar area that would extend the peninsula bar to create a waterfall countertop affect.

What I am having trouble deciding on these four decisions:

Granite vs. Quartz: Are granite countertops still an acceptable upgrade in 2017? I know the new trend is quartz or the like. My concerns with the quartz are that 1) the countertops may be too modern for the existing natural oak cabinets, 2) most of the quartz that I have seen is very simplistic (white or has a white base) and will not make a huge statement without the correct cabinets, backsplashes, etc. and 3) Is the upgrade price of the quartz justifiable if I plan to sell my home in the next 3-5 years? I am leaning towards the granite after visiting a local countertop warehouse recently. It is obvious that granite has more character to it than quartz, but in the long run I am not sure which makes more sense
Raised Bar vs. Current Height: After doing some research it seems that the standard bar height ranges from 40-46. The existing "bar" height in this kitchen is 40". After eating at this bar before the 40" height did seem somewhat uncomfortable. It could have just been the 30" bar stools and/or the fact that there is there was not any countertop overhang. I am trying to decide if it makes sense to hire a contractor/handymen just to raise the bar 2-4 inches (42-44)? I think adding the overhang and finding some lowered/adjustable height bar stools should make this an easy decision.
Waterfall Countertop vs. More Bar Space: I was given the idea of creating a dry bar on the wall between the kitchen and family room. I could extend the new L-shaped kitchen bar overhang to create a waterfall countertop affect. The bar area would house a wine cooler/fridge. The downside to adding the bar area is that it will take away about 18 inches of space. This means the shortest side of the L-shaped bar will have seating for one instead of two people.
Refinishing Cabinets: In the original scope of my kitchen update project I did not plan to make any changes to the existing kitchen cabinets. However, I would be remiss to not bring this up on a kitchen update project. I have mentioned refinishing the existing cabinets (painting and updating the door/drawer fronts), to which I was told that my existing cabinets were fine and I didn't really need to do anything to them. I had pretty much accepted this idea until I went to look at countertops recently and found that it was really hard to picture new countertops on top of outdated Oak cabinets. Refinishing the cabinets makes me nervous because I am unsure how the job will turn out. I have seen pictures online of painted Oak cabinets, which have turned out great. On the other hand I have also seen some in-person and those either turned out just okay or not so great. I would be risking a couple thousand to refinish my cabinets not knowing if they will turn out great or only to pay out more money to fix them again or replace them because I don't like the refinished work.

If you also have any recommendations for companies in the Atlanta area for this project, please feel free to provide them.
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