Ron Woodson and Jaime Rummerfield are Los Angeles-based inside designers whose award-winning agency, Woodson & Rummerfield’s House of Design, is thought for an aesthetic that at all times mixes previous with new. They, like all designers, are within the enterprise of serving to their purchasers furnish their houses, however they aren’t followers of automated kitchen remodels.
“An excessive amount of on-trend is unhealthy design,” Woodson says. “As a substitute, create a kitchen with soul.”
His companion provides, “We’re extremely delicate to previous structure. In case you preserve your kitchen in keeping with the structure and the story of your home, you may’t go flawed. It turns into timeless.”
This isn’t the accepted knowledge. In 2017, two million kitchens had been reworked; this 12 months, the National Association of Homebuilders mentioned that kitchen remodels accounted for 78% of dwelling enchancment initiatives final 12 months.
These are costly undertakings. On common, a kitchen rework prices $25,340, or $150 per sq. foot. Most owners spend between $13,283 and $37,544, or $75 to $250 per sq. foot. The whole expense varies relying on the scale of the area, the standard of supplies, and whether or not there are adjustments to the format of the room.
A smaller venture between $10,000 and $15,000 might embrace portray partitions, refacing cupboards, upgrading the sink, and putting in a tile backsplash. A $30,000+ renovation might embrace putting in customized cupboards, hardwood flooring, granite counters, and high-end home equipment.
The associated fee to our planet can be appreciable: greater than 30 % of the waste in a landfill comes from dwelling renovation, a sobering reality for owners excessive on visions of recent counters and cupboards.
Typically, the work is finished in hopes of creating the home extra enticing to potential consumers.
“In a transient city like Washington, DC, folks doubtless solely stay in a home for 4 years,” says lecturer, author, and architectural historian Gordon Bock. “The argument for reworking is that many potential consumers (particularly 30-somethings) head proper for the kitchen and, if they do not see a child Viking vary and granite counter, they instantly flip round, by no means viewing the remainder of the home. They need every little thing turn-key. Plus, they do not need to need to price range for a later costly venture. They need all the prices of a brand new kitchen wrapped right into a mortgage that can be a recognized expense going ahead.”
“The fixed updating of kitchens just isn’t solely wasteful, but additionally extraordinarily disruptive,” says Patricia Poore, editor of the Previous Home Journal. “Kitchen renovation is dear, fraught with decision-making, and messy. The case might be made that the kitchen itself is ephemera, as a result of expertise is at all times altering. Nonetheless, there’s a distinction between essential adjustments and people which might be mere issues of style. The icebox gave solution to the fridge, the automated dishwasher grew to become commonplace. Such evolution is sensible and inevitable.
“What’s not inevitable is the all-white kitchen, or navy-blue cupboards, or herringbone backsplashes. These are tendencies, and tendencies quickly turn out to be dated. The brand new proprietor decides that completely good supplies must be discarded and changed, primarily based solely on their look.”
Jaime Rummerfield means that, when doubtful, owners ask themselves, “What would the architect do now?
“If it’s worthwhile to make adjustments, do it with out destroying what’s good and dealing. Sure varieties of cupboards, for instance, had been very nicely constructed and will be redesigned. They don’t need to be scrapped.”
“It speaks to a inexperienced sensibility and to conservation once you cease and assume earlier than launching a kitchen rework,” says Ron Woodson.
“I point out to my purchasers which might be transforming that they’ll donate or reuse their previous cupboards,” says Cathy Stathopoulos, a licensed kitchen designer primarily based in Newburyport, Massachusetts.
“Habitat for Humanity will take previous cupboards in good condition. Or they can be utilized within the basement or storage, slightly than being thrown out.”
In case you do have to transform, preserve the home’s heritage in thoughts.
“In case you stay in a Tudor-style home, why would you set an ultra-modern kitchen in it?” asks Woodson. “Keep near the interval and historical past of the home.”
“The Previous Home Journal has at all times recommended designing the kitchen ‘to go along with the home,’ slightly than following showroom tendencies,” says Patricia Poore.
“If the design is traditional and the supplies are conventional, the room will maintain up; it can really feel prefer it belongs in the home. It’s jarring to stroll right into a home inbuilt 1860 or 1920, and know instantly that the kitchen dates to the late Eighties, or 2010.
“The perfect state of affairs is to put money into high quality whereas protecting the design timeless, and comparatively easy,” she says. “You—or the subsequent proprietor—can replace equipment or home equipment with out having to begin over.”