Resources

Resources

Decorative Underlining Graphic

PROJECT PLANNING IS IMPERATIVE

The success of your project rests in the hands of careful planning. Hopefully these tools and this information can help!

SEEK EXPERT ADVICE

Seek Expert Advice Icon

D0-IT-YOURSELFER OR A PRO?

DIY Icon

THE CHECKLIST

Checklist Icon

TIMELINES

Timelines Icon

REPLACE, REFRESH, OR EXPAND?

Replace, Refresh, or Expand Icon

COMPLETE BUDGET

Complete Budget Icon

SEEK EXPERT ADVICE

The first step in making your dream kitchen become a reality is having a consultation with a professional kitchen designer. With more than seven decades of combined experience, our design team knows exactly how to interpret your vision and turn it into a dream kitchen. 

MORE THAN JUST THE LAYOUT

While some companies may offer just a layout of cabinetry and countertops, our design team goes above and beyond to help make your custom kitchen show worthy. True design works together seamlessly-from storage coordination to color and material balance and more. The designers at KBD of Iowa City can help you by offering a soundboard for advice, advise you on how to coordinate your kitchen for efficiency, and create a beautiful design plan complete with complementary colors, materials, and making sure it all blends effortlessly into your appliances. 

DESIGN AT YOUR FINGERTIPS

Save time by designing your dream kitchen by computer, phone, or email. Our design team is ready to help you make your vision come true by being on call and ready to help you get started on your new project. In today’s busy world, we understand that it can be hard to make it into the shop for a consultation, and we provide plenty of options in order to make your life easier.

D0-IT-YOURSELFER OR A PRO?

Are you a jack-of-all trades? Do you have friends that can help you out? If you think that a DIY project is the right option for you, you can save a ton of money by doing it yourself. However, if you lack the tools, experience, or assistance to install your new countertops or cabinets properly you could be racking up thousands of dollars in repair work after all is said and done. Here are a few good ways to decide whether you can wing it yourself or if you need to call in the professionals. 

DO-IT-YOURSELF ESSENTIALS

In order to execute a professional status DIY project, you need to make sure you have the skills and tools to complete the job. Here is a great self-assessment you can take in order to decide if you are fit for a DIY job or if it needs to be left to the professionals.

• Do you have the installation skills and tools needed to complete the job?
• Is physical labor something you enjoy?
• Will you have the patience to complete a remodel?
• Are you organized and can create a plan to stay on track?
• Do you have the time to complete a remodel?
• Do you enjoy researching how to complete projects?

CALLING IN THE PROFESSIONALS

The reality is, most people don’t have the skills, time, or tools needed to complete a DIY remodel. If you answered no to any of the self-assessment questions, you will want to send in the pros to complete your remodel. Hire a trusted company to handle your remodel and make sure you book them out many weeks-even months-ahead of time so you can get that dream kitchen just in time for Christmas dinner. Here are a few ways to find a pro for your remodel: 

• Grab a referral- Did your friend or family member recently have a great experience with a remodel company? Grab the name of the pro that helped them and give them a call. 
• Check online- Angie’s list, google, and plenty more websites often have reviews available for companies. Check them out and then pick the company you feel fits the best. 

QUESTIONS TO ASK THE PROFESSIONALS

• How long have you been in business?
• Do you have insurance?
• Do you have any references or a portfolio?
• Can you provide a written contract?
• How do you handle change orders?
• What is your pricing like? Do you offer itemized pricing?
• Who will be working on my remodel?

A FEW THINGS TO CONSIDER

• Kitchen remodels can take 1-3 weeks or longer. Make sure you plan accordingly and get along well with everyone who will be on the job. 
• Give your contractor space to work. Don’t talk to them excessively, ask non-stop questions, or try to supervise them. This will delay the job. 
• The contractor should be cleaning up after the day’s work is done. 
• Be aware that it is likely you are not the only job on their list. Your kitchen may take a backseat in the even that they run into an emergency on another job. 

THE CHECKLIST

Keep in mind that you will need to create a road map of the remodel you have ahead of you. Keeping a flexible schedule is the best way to reduce any stress and really be able to roll with the punches. Here is a good checklist to keep on handy to help you out during this process. 

DEVELOP A PLAN

Developing a plan and a timeline for your remodel is a crucial first step to keeping you organized. Don’t start out with unrealistic expectations and give yourself plenty of flexibility in case things don’t go exactly as you planned. 

WHEN TO REMODEL AND WHEN TO NOT

If, for example, you love to host a delicious Christmas dinner or cook a mean Thanksgiving turkey, make sure your remodel is done far, far away from the holidays. This goes for any major events as well-wedding or engagement parties, graduation parties, birthdays, etc. Are you planning to eat out while your kitchen is being remodeled? Budget this as well. 

FAMILY MEMBER SCHEDULES

Plan your remodel for when the family members in your home have the least commitments and can work with some flexibility. You also want to be able to keep all of your pets out of the construction site as well. 

RESEARCHING WHAT YOU NEED

Put plenty of time into researching what you want, need, and what you can afford. During this pre-planning stage, you can use books, magazines, or the internet to help give you some ideas and information. Get your designer in on this step and make sure it’s well thought out to help save you time and frustration. 

YOUR HOME

Since a remodel can take time, it is important to map out the points of entry into your home, what to do if utilities or appliances need to be rearranged, and where you will store your things for the time being. 

LEGALITIES

Make sure you give yourself, and your contractor, plenty of time to get in the necessary codes and permits to start building your dream kitchen. 

MOBILE KITCHEN

Your kitchen will be mostly inaccessible during construction, so you want to make sure you have access to clean water, dishes, and a fridge and microwave. It is a good idea to purchase some disposable dishes so you don’t find yourself hand washing as well. 

ORDER PRODUCTS

In order to make sure that your planning goes smoothly, give yourself plenty of time to have your products shipped in. When it comes to custom items, it can take weeks for these materials to come in. Nothing upsets planning like not having the materials to complete the job with! Make sure you have a safe, climate controlled area to store all of your materials while you wait for your remodel to start. 

TIMELINES

The most important thing to remember when it comes to your kitchen remodel is to remain flexible. There are so many things that can offset the original plan of your new kitchen. Some things need to be done in a specific order, delays in one area of your kitchen can affect the timeline for other areas, or there could be other issues that come up during construction. While these are loose timelines, this is a general idea for how long each step in your remodel process will take. 

PLANNING

This is all on you. You can start months or even years before your remodel. This is where you start thinking up your dream kitchen. 

FIND YOUR CONTRACTOR

Another “at your own speed” task. Finding a contractor should take as long as it needs to. Don’t sacrifice quality while just grabbing the first company available. 

DESIGN: STEP 1

This can take 1-3 days and you should involve the designer as much or as little as possible. Communicate your wants, needs and budget clearly during this step. 

DESIGN: FINAL

Your final design should take 1-4 weeks but it could take longer depending on the amount of changes or detail that goes into your design. Keep in contact with your designer and allow plenty of time for necessary changes during this phase. 

PRODUCT ORDER

You will want to give this step anywhere from 1-2 or more months. Plenty of time is needed for delivery of the product and returns need to be kept in mind as well in case something shows up damaged. 

DEMO & CONSTRUCTION

In this stage, expect 1-4 weeks of time set aside. If you are changing the layout of your entire kitchen plan on it taking a month but if you are just prepping counters, floors, or cabinets, you likely won’t need to budget as much time for this. 

UTILITIES

If you are changing the layout of your kitchen, plan on 1-2 weeks for plumbing and gas lines to be rearranged. The same goes for additions of light fixtures or outlets. 

PAINT

1-3 days is a good timeline for a paint job to be done. It is easiest when you don’t have all of the cabinets and countertops to maneuver around. 

NEW FLOOR INSTALLATION

If you are about to be the proud new owner of a new floor, plan on 3-5 days for this step. 

CABINET INSTALLATION

All of this will vary on the size of your kitchen, design plan, and other factors, but you can generally expect to set aside 3-5 days for this. 

COUNTER TOP MEASUREMENT

This is a quickie, and can be done in one day during business hours. 

APPLIANCES

1-2 days is all that is needed (usually) to reinstall any appliances that have been moved around or removed for constructions. 

LIGHTING

Another short install, lighting can take just 1-2 days (especially if you have prepped the area beforehand). 

FABRICATING COUNTER TOPS

A lot of this is dependent upon delivery times, but expect 1-2 weeks in general. In some situations, you may find yourself waiting up to one month. 

INSTALLING YOUR COUNTER TOPS

Leave some room for any accidents or errors, but this can often be done in one day. 

INSTALLING BACKSPLASH

A great accent detail to your kitchen, this can be done in 1-2 days. 

APPLIANCE INSTALLATION: PART 2

Give this step 1-2 days depending on the utility type. 

FINISHING TOUCHES

Give 2-4 days for accents, crown molding, and paint touch ups. 

REPLACE, REFRESH, OR EXPAND?

Not all remodels have to be from scratch. Perhaps you just want your kitchen refreshed. Decide on whether or not you have the time, flexibility, and finances to create an entirely new kitchen. Are new cabinets a must or can yours be refurbished? Here are a few ways to decide. 

REPLACING CABINETS AND KITCHEN ITEMS

If you like the overall shape of your kitchen, then replacing cabinets can be a great choice to revamp your space without going all in with a kitchen expansion or full remodel. During this process you can also swap out your countertops, flooring, and paint colors as well. This is a great choice for those who want to save money and not have to move gas lines, plumbing, and appliances around to fit a new kitchen shape. 

REFRESHING CABINETS

Sometimes just changing the paint colors can be great for a kitchen update. However, keep in mind that if your cabinets are damaged it will cost more in the long run by having to paint them and then replace them later on. If your cabinets are damaged, it’s best to just go ahead and replace them during your remodel. 

KITCHEN EXPANSION

Expanding your kitchen means changing the entire kitchen footprint. Often times this involves moving walls, gas lines, plumbing and appliances. This can be great for people who really want an entire kitchen makeover and to expand or create a whole new space. Keep in mind that this option will take longer and be more expensive but it is well worth the investment if you plan on remaining in your home for many years or are looking to increase the value of your home. 

COMPLETE BUDGET

Finalizing your budget is an extremely important part of the remodeling process. After you have your plan and contractor, sit down and make sure you have a really solid budget plan. Making changes before construction begins is much cheaper than having to make any changes after the fact. Take a minute to decide between the necessities and the luxuries, and a list of things you can bare to live without in case the decision comes up. 

HOW MUCH TO BUDGET?

As a general rule of thumb, your kitchen should be about 10-25% of the value of your home. This doesn’t mean you have to spend that much, and you won’t have to if you take advantage of sales, warehouses, and other money saving options. 

• Flexibility 
Remaining flexible is a good way to save money, especially if alternative options come up at a cheaper cost or installation is cheaper at different times of the year. 
• Research 
Do plenty of research before you decide on material, contractors, designers, etc. 
• DIY or Contractor?
DIY is a great way to save money, but if you aren’t prepared (see the DIY self-assessment) then you are going to spend more money having a professional fix your mistakes. 
• Bargains 
From time to time, suppliers will offer discounted materials. Taking advantage of this can save you a big chunk of money. 

GIVE US A CALL
319.359.7941

GET FREE ONLINE ESTIMATE
Share by: