From going through the arduous task of obtaining planning permission from the council to move that beam (what seems like 5cm) to delays in the glass doors that should have arrived in June but wont until August now because of supply issues, it's inevitable that building projects often take longer than planned. You’ve still got the kitchen and bathroom to think about and nothing seems ready. The dreams you had of transforming your home with all those creative ideas that would make it look amazing and fit your lifestyle like a perfectly tailored suit are now a distant memory. Help is at hand as we look at five tips that can help you to make your new kitchen project run as smoothly as possible.
1. START EARLY
If possible, decide on which company you would like to make your kitchen as far in advance as possible. Four to six months is preferable but more time is even better. This will give the benefit of design expertise early in the process so if you need to make changes structurally to your build then you have the time to do so. It also means that you give yourself the time to explore kitchen designs more thoroughly and to work out which design works best for you.
Think of the relief when tendering for a builder if you already have the kitchen design completed. This means you can gain accurate quotations for the work much more easily and quickly. Choosing your kitchen manufacturer early also means the logistics of the project can be booked in advance and you can avoid any difficulties of working during the busier periods of the year. What's more, be aware that if it’s a traditionally-handmade kitchen that you choose, the lead times on these types of kitchens are longer than for flat-pack kitchens because they are made to order, so starting early is even more useful.
2. GIVE YOURSELF TIME
Give yourself a time contingency which you never disclose to any contractors or builders. This is a tactic used by experienced developers and it really works. Whatever the date is that you want everything completed by, add 4 weeks on top of this if possible, and keep this time in reserve should it be required. The classic example of putting unnecessary time pressure on yourself is Christmas. It’s a busy time of year to complete a kitchen or building project and so if you would like the project to be finished in time then please follow my advice from step one.
3. USE A ONE-STOP SHOP
When it comes to selecting all of the components that make up a kitchen like the appliances, sink, tap, handles and worktops, ordering them from one company will save time, hassle and take the weight off your shoulders - especially if your project involves a full house refurbishment or extension. We deliver all of these items to our clients together with their kitchen furniture so that everything arrives at the same time and tradesmen can begin work immediately.
4. KEEP NOTES
When you have commissioned the kitchen company you are using for your project, document your planning meetings with your kitchen designer throughout the process. It will help you to keep on top of the things that need to be done and help to keep the project on track. We give each of our clients a Harvey Jones Journal which contains all of the important details and documents pertaining to their project and it has lots of space for samples and catalogues so that all the materials for the project can be kept together in one convenient place.
5. DEVELOP YOUR WISHLIST
A kitchen project involves a lot of decisions. We are on hand to guide you through them, but you will find it helpful to start prioritising the things you must have in your new kitchen – we call this your ‘wishlist’. This might include a particular storage cupboard, appliance or paint colour. But outside of this wishlist, keep things simple and don’t give yourself too many choices. An example would be picking your tap. You might go online to take a look and you will come across thousands of different options from hundreds of manufacturers. Whittling it down to just one can be an intimidating task and take up a lot of time (you can now see why you want to get your project started so early) but I recommend working in threes. So, when choosing an item, get your options down to three and then make your decision from there. You can help yourself even more by writing a quick criteria of what you want from the item. Take the tap again as an example. What type of finish do you want? Single lever or double? Traditional or modern? This will give you a head start and keep your thinking clear.
I hope you have found this information useful and wish you luck in finding the right kitchen for you in the smoothest way possible. For more hints and tips about planning your kitchen project keep an eye on the Harvey Jones website. You can also follow Harvey Jones on Twitter and Facebook.