It’s true—choosing your new appliances can seem like a lot of fun after making all those other tough decisions in your kitchen remodel!! The layout…the materials…it can all cause some VERY real choice paralysis.
But…fun though appliance shopping can be, don’t let all the sparkling new options get the better of you. These decisions CAN be fun, there are just some things to keep in mind before you get in too deep.
Remember: it starts with a plan. Not only is it fun to pick appliances out for your remodel, it’s also one of the biggest line-items in your overall budget. So…picking the right appliances means picking the features that are most important to YOU. In the end, the appliances you select have a cascading effect on the overall kitchen design. It comes down to your lifestyle and how you use the kitchen, on top of the “look” you’re after.
Your thought-out appliance plan will ensure that you’re HAPPY with the look, function and feel of your kitchen remodel!!
Read these tips before you make ANY appliance selections, and you can save yourself money and disappointment down the line…save this article to your phone right now, and take it with you to the showroom!!
The obvious consideration: BUDGET
Obviously, your kitchen appliance selections will have to factor in your budget.
That said…it’s common for appliances to end up being the biggest line-item on a kitchen remodel by a wide margin. This works out well for you, because they’re also the features that can have the biggest impact on how you live in and use your kitchen.
After all…your kitchen’s primary purpose is to give you the space and tools you need to cook!!
Before we get into how your cooking style might impact your choices, we have to get this budget thing figured out. First, ask yourself: how high-end do you want to go?
Discuss your budget with your designer and be transparent about where your priorities are. Are you interested in high-end solutions if they bring you something amazing? Or are you committed to mid-range?
The equally-obvious: HOW YOU COOK
The other fundamental factor to consider when selecting kitchen appliances is HOW you use your kitchen. What’s the most important part of the kitchen in your day-to-day cooking? Do you bake a lot? Do you cook mostly on the cooktop? Are you a fan of the microwave, with all your nicely-organized left-overs in that neatly-stacked fridge?
Get down to the nitty-gritty on how you USE your kitchen, because it will all come into play when making selections. All of it!! For example, do you like to cook sauces? You’ll need a cooktop with a low simmer option, then. Is your dishwasher the one thing that guarantees a little time to yourself after dinner each night? Pick out the features you like best and start mapping it all out!
Of ALL the kitchen appliances, the refrigerator has received the most tech updates in recent years. This is one appliance where you can go VERY high-end, and it can be fun to explore all the bells and whistles like WiFi, a touch-screen on the door, hot beverage servers…or even seltzer dispensers!!
And, of course…beyond these features, you’ll have the fridge’s look, energy efficiency, and even ergonomics in mind…
Tell us—do you LOVE the look of French doors?
TREND TIP: One trend we’re seeing a LOT today are column refrigerator and freezers…is that “yea” or “nay” for you??
Many fridges today can be COMPLETELY integrated into the cabinetry, too, so you don’t see them at all in your kitchen landscape. Pretty cool, right?!
Now…are you concerned about energy consumption?
Also ask yourself: how long DO you want your food to last?
TREND TIP: Also (and I’m SO happy to say this)—we’re starting to see a lot more color in appliance options, too, so you aren’t just stuck with stainless anymore!!
Cooktops and ovens
First, I’ve got to say—if you haven’t seen this yet, your stovetop can now actually be routed out so that it’s totally flush with your countertop. This does mean a bigger investment…but WOW does it look amazing!
Now…when it comes to your cooktop, how quickly do you want yours to heat? The performance differences from one cooktop to another are enormous, and recommendations come down to how you cook.
There’s also the eternal question of…electric or gas? But, really, those aren’t the only options. Induction heating has been popular in Europe for decades, but in the U.S. it seems like we’ve been stuck in “gas is king” for a LONG time. Look at the new induction stovetops hitting the market today if you want what the top chefs are cooking on…it’s also safer and more efficient!!
As for OVENS…there are also gas and electric options, of course. But there are also less common options like steam ovens.
However high-end you go will just depend on how much you like to cook!!
Now, here’s the LAST tip for cooktops and ovens…and this is a BIG one: once you have an idea of what you’re looking for, go somewhere you can actually give something a test cook!! For example, many of the higher-end makers sponsor cooking classes…get on Google or ask your designer for tips on where to find these!
Talk to a repairman FIRST
Once you’re down to those final decisions on your appliances for that PERFECT kitchen remodel, talk to a repair man before you make your final decision. Just imagine it…you splurge on the high-end refrigerator, cooktop or oven, and you’re SUPER excited…only to find out that NO local repair man fixes that brand!! Sometimes it’s about what parts they can and can’t find, too, so be sure to ask first.
And, whatever you do, don’t select ANY appliance before looking closely at the included warranties. Higher-end appliances will have not just the best warranties if something does break down, they’ll even have cosmetic warranties to keep that appliance looking AMAZING in your dream kitchen…
PRO TIP: If you’re looking at a stand-alone icemaker, DEFINITELY think about getting the extended warranty!! Ask us why the next time you’re in the office…
PRO TIP: If you want a closer look at what to consider for an oven hood, read this article next…seriously—the oven hood is one of the most overlooked appliances in the kitchen, but it’s more important than the cooktop!!
Ideally, you’ll choose your kitchen layout first for your remodel. THEN you’ll choose the appliances that fit. However, if you absolutely fall in love with that one fridge, or that amazing oven…you can build around it. There are compromises you can make when you have your dream look AND feel top-of-mind!!
Where are you in your remodel?! Have you seen our remodeling personality quiz?? Check it out and tell us what result you get!!