Pick up any design magazine or peruse a website, and you’re bound to spot something new and exciting that you’d love to include in the kitchen remodeling project you're planning. But how do you determine whether a trend is worth the cost, or if it will end up costing you in aggravation, repair, and replacement?
You can play it safe, and always go with what’s classic. That can be boring, and it’s not always the best route. A better way is to give trends the attention they deserve, to weed out the bad from the good, and find out what’s right for your home.
Here are 5 trends; some to watch, and some you might be better off skipping:
Kitchen Remodeling Trend #1: Built-in Coffee Center
How committed are you to your morning cup of Joe? For many, coffee is almost a way of life. But does that mean a built-in coffee center is a great idea? Maybe.
Built-ins like a coffee maker have one potential flaw — if something goes wrong, you’re stuck with a large fixture that requires repair, or is doomed to wasted space. Repairs might be challenging and expensive. A broken coffee pot is much easier to replace or have repaired.
Before investing in an upscale coffee center built into a kitchen wall, find out what the warranty and repair policy is, and whether repair is even possible in your area.
Kitchen Remodeling Trend #2: Super Trendy Cabinets
Cabinets are a very large investment, and one that you won’t want to replace anytime soon. This might not be the best place to show off trendy designs, materials or colors.
If you are confident that the cabinets you love today will still be in style in 10 years, then go for it. But if you’re not so sure, consider a cabinet style with more classic lines, and save the flair for kitchen items that won’t cost a fortune to replace if you tire of the look.
One way to embrace color trends with cabinets is by painting the ones you’ve got. If the color doesn’t appeal to you in a few years, you can paint them again.
Kitchen Remodeling Trend #3: High End Cook Stoves
If you are a serious cook with plenty of money to spare, by all means, splurge on a delightful AGA cook stove. Otherwise, you might be shocked by prices upward of $8,000, at American retailers such as AJ Madison.
AGA stoves have a combination of vintage-looking style, gorgeous colors, and heavy-duty construction that can last a lifetime or two. But the cost might surprise even the most seasoned home improvement maven.
AGA cookers are all imported. They are manufactured in England, so import costs make up part of the price tag. They're also made mostly of iron, so they’re very heavy. Cooking on an AGA cooker doesn’t come natural to many cooks, either. They rely on radiant heat, and many new owners attend a demonstration to learn how to use them properly.
Kitchen Remodeling Trend #4: Computerized Appliances
Nearly everyone has a computer these days. But do you really need Internet access on your refrigerator? Probably not. If you're curious about what they can do, here's an article we wrote about the new “smart refrigerators” where you can keep track of the food inside, and look up recipes on the Internet.
As with other built-ins, this kitchen remodeling trend can go wrong in many ways. Wipe down the fridge with a damp rag, and you could damage the display. You’ll also need an Internet port or router to feed the appliance. If you can be away from email for long enough to grab a bottle of water, you might not need a connected refrigerator.
Kitchen Remodeling Trend #5: Upscale Dishwashers
Dishwashers show no signs of going out of style anytime soon. They conserve water over hand washing, and save your manicure too. Newer models are more efficient, and come in a wider range of styles and sizes to suit many households.
Upscale dishwashers might be a single, deep drawer positioned higher on a base cabinet for easier access. They might also be a set of two drawers, allowing you to use one for small loads or both for bigger loads.
Some offer front panels that blend in with the cabinetry seamlessly, allowing the appliance to virtually disappear when the door is closed. Efficiency, convenience, and style make the new range of dishwashers an almost universal plus.
Some trends come along and have the staying power to last. Some are a lot like the earrings you loved in the 80s — they’re nice for a while, but regrettable later.
When considering new kitchen remodeling ideas, trends will naturally emerge for you to consider. That’s normal, and how design evolves. Only you can decide what’s a wise investment for your home.
Always think about the long term. Will the item last? Is the design timeless, or will it look dated in a few years? If you’ve got money to burn, it might not matter. But if you’re like most of us, every dollar you spend is an investment in the value of your home. Spend those dollars wisely.
Have you discovered any new kitchen trends you’d like to share? We’d love to learn about them!