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Itchin' to update your kitchen

Five Steps to Create the Kitchen of Your Dreams

(NC) Remodeling the kitchen. When you decide to tackle this daunting undertaking, you want to do it right. And, you're not alone. According to a recent survey by Houzz.com, 49 percent of homeowners plan to completely gut their existing kitchen and start with a clean state. Regardless of the scope of your project, if you're itchin' to update your kitchen, follow these five steps to design the space you've been dreaming about.

Step 1: Create a budget

Before picking up a single tool or seeking contractor recommendations from friends, it's important to determine how much you're willing to spend to achieve your ideal kitchen. Whether needing basic upgrades or a complete remodel, setting your budget will help to create a realistic plan from the start. There are a wide range of impactful updates to change the look of your space no matter what the price tag.

Step 2: Think about what you need (and what you want)

Take a step back and think about how you use the kitchen. Are you an avid baker and need more counter space for rolling out confections? Do you like to make homemade pizza, and the thought of a stone oven makes you drool? No matter what your dream space looks like, there's one area that everyone should update – the kitchen faucet.

Because it sees so much use on a daily basis, think about ways to make tasks easier, like installing a new pulldown faucet. From preparing meals and washing dishes, to watering plants and filling pitchers, you'll quickly notice the difference made by this simple update. For a contemporary look, try the new Moen Align or STō pulldown faucets. Both bring modern style and superior performance with a two-function pulldown spray wand that allows you to switch the water flow from aerated stream to spray with the push of a button.

Step 3: Research and plan

Sources for ideas and inspiration are infinite – especially online. Sites like Pinterest and Houzz provide endless eye candy and design concepts for your new kitchen space; Houzz can even provide recommendations of local professionals to contact. To visualize a few of the upgrades you're considering – not to mention touch and feel them – visit a local kitchen showroom as they have a number of vignettes and “rooms” designed throughout. Magazine articles can also provide valuable how-to information and design advice. Just be sure to save any favourite ideas in one place, making everything easily accessible when it's time to get started.

Step 4: Determine your approach

Will you hire a pro or do most of the work yourself? If you're going to change the layout or remove walls in the kitchen, it's best to work with a professional contractor. Rewiring electrical or adding new light sources are also jobs best left to a certified electrician. You can find a number of professionals online, where you can also read reviews from previous customers, and in some cases, view samples of their work. If you're an avid DIYer, you may feel comfortable installing new cabinets, flooring and countertops. But there are certain projects, like the demo, painting and installation of a new faucet that anyone – and any skill level – can easily tackle.

Step 5: Get to work

If you haven't begun working on your kitchen project yet, you're not alone; 68 percent of Houzz respondents haven't started construction, either. But with the perfect plan and a list of updates to incorporate, it will be simple to create your dream kitchen space.

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