15 Kitchen Renovation Mistakes That Will Hurt Home’s Value 

Do you know that a kitchen renovation can increase your home’s value by 20%? However, if you spend money on the wrong renovations, it might harm the value of your home instead of increasing it. You might be wondering which kitchen renovations can undermine the value of your home. 

We contacted the interior designers and construction experts to get their industry secrets, discovered the accessories that might not pay off in the long run, and looked into the kitchen designs to find out which ideas are favourites among buyers. Whether you are planning a complete kitchen remodelling project or looking for new luxury appliances to create your dream space, we’ve got you covered. This article will discuss 15 kitchen renovation mistakes that can decrease the value of your home. 

Table of Contents

How Much Does Kitchen Renovations Cost In Ottawa?

First thing first, let us discuss the average costs of kitchen renovation tasks in Ottawa. An average kitchen renovation costs $30,944 or $195 per square foot. These costs can vary depending on the details of your renovation plan. A good renovation can result in 75%-100% ROI. 

According to the Homestars cost guide, the breakdown of the kitchen renovation budget is given in the following table. 

Appliances$4201
Cabinetry and hardware$8,704
Lighting$1,500
Counter tops$3001
Kitchen flooring$2,100
Doors and windows$1200
Kitchen walls and ceiling$1500
Faucets and plumbing$1200
Installation$5,102

Some of the most expensive kitchen renovations are cabinet installation followed by replacing flooring. These costs can vary depending on the materials you choose, or the size of your kitchen. The costs mentioned above should only be used as a guideline as the total cost can vary according to the finer details of your renovation plan.   

Kitchen Renovations That Result In The Highest Return On Investment

According to a survey by Remax, the kitchen renovations that result in the highest ROI are replacing countertops (75%-100% return) and replacing flooring (100%-150% return). Similarly, Canadian Mortgage Magazine reported that some of the renovations with the greatest ROI are upgrading light fixtures and replacing flooring

 

Many of our clients frequently report that they prioritize energy efficiency while looking for a house to buy. So upgrading home insulation or replacing kitchen windows can result in a good ROI. Depending on your unique situation, you can plan a kitchen renovation project.  

Kitchen Renovations That Can Decrease Your Home’s Value

Now let us discuss the kitchen renovations that can harm the value of your home. These are the renovations that are not prioritized by potential buyers. 

1. Using Low-Quality Materials For Cabinets Or Floor

One of the biggest mistakes that people make is using low-quality materials in their kitchens. These include cheap kitchen cabinets and inexpensive flooring e.g. laminate or vinyl. Such floors can easily chip and have stains. 

Pros

  • Low-quality materials are budget-friendly. 
  • They might look nice for a few years after installation.  

Cons

  • They have a very short life. A few years after remodelling, when you want to sell your house, those low-quality cabinets and materials are falling apart. 
  • They are difficult to maintain. 

Our Recommendation

  • Use moderately expensive materials. Solid wood is the preferred material for cabinets. Ceramic, porcelain, stone tile and treated hardwood are preferred choices for the kitchen floor.  

2. Excessive Wallpaper

Wallpaper comes with a variety of patterns and textures. They might give your kitchen a very fancy and dainty look but they are a poor choice for the kitchen.  

Pros

  • Beautiful textures and patterns can be added to your kitchen. 

Cons

  • Wallpaper can easily peel off or get damp due to moisture. 
  • The process of applying or removing the wallpaper is very time-consuming and hard. 

Our Recommendation

  • Use paints in natural colours instead of wallpaper. 

3. High- End Appliances

Many people believe in buying the newest and smartest appliances for their kitchen. While keeping up with the latest technology is a good thing, it might not translate into a great ROI, when it comes to kitchen remodelling.   

Pros

  • They allow you to experience the newest technology.  

Cons

  • They are usually quite expensive to maintain and repair. 
  • These appliances will be soon outdated. If your goal is to have the newest technology in the kitchen, that can’t be achieved as the technology changes after every few years. 

Our Recommendation

  • The latest technology in the kitchen can help if you want to sell soon. If you want to sell after 6 to 8 years, do not invest in high-end appliances. 
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4. Choosing Overly Large-Sized Appliances

When it comes to renovation, measurements are crucial. The one-to-two-inch difference can make a huge difference. While buying your appliances, always take into consideration your cabinet specifications. You might fancy a large-sized oven or dishwasher, but you will end up facing a bigger problem when it doesn’t fit in the specified space. Even if it fits in, it will require more energy to run and more maintenance. 

Pros

  • A large-size dishwasher or washing machine can take more load and save time.

Cons

  •  It can occupy more space and might make your kitchen look overcrowded. 
  • It might require more electricity to run. 

Our Recommendation

  • Choose the size of your appliances according to the designated space in the kitchen. 

5. DIY Repairs In The Kitchen

Kitchen remodelling is expensive, to say the least. However, when you try to do it yourself to reduce the cost, it might not result in great output. Some examples of DIY kitchen repairs are changing the cabinet doors, changing the door knobs, or fixing the floor. 

Pros

  • DIY kitchen repair is fun. 
  • It is budget-friendly. 
  • You can be more flexible with the look and feel of your kitchen.  

Cons

  • It can result in poor quality. 
  • It can result in requiring more expensive repairs later on.  
  • It can make your kitchen look uglier. 

Our Recommendation

  • Hire an experienced plumber for kitchen remodelling. 

6. DIY Plumbing

Plumbing is one of the most critical functions of your home and ensures that water goes in and out of your kitchen safely. Many homeowners know the dangers of having a faulty plumbing system. That is why they try to resolve the issue as soon as it becomes evident. It also saves money. However, when you are going to sell the home, wrong plumbing becomes evident very soon and reduces the value of your home.

Pros

  • It is inexpensive. 

Cons

  • One mistake can damage the whole plumbing system. 
  • If a potential buyer notices one mistake, she might question the whole plumbing system. 

Our Recommendation

  • We recommend hiring licensed plumbers to do plumbing work and keeping receipts and warranties. 

7. Out-Of-Style Trends

 When it comes to renovation, following trends that are past their peak might harm your home’s value. Instead, you should follow the trends that will be loved for years to come. You should choose the colours, textures, ergonomics and styles that will work in the coming years. 

Choosing the right materials, colours and layouts will make your kitchen look contemporary and inviting. 

Pros

  • They are inexpensive. 

Cons

  • They make your kitchen look dated and uninviting. 

Our Recommendation

  • We recommend using up-to-date and contemporary designs. Some of the popular colours in the kitchen are white with cherry or birch. 

8. Too trendy Renovation

We all like to keep up with the latest trends. However, trends come in and go fast too soon. Try not to incorporate too many trendy design items as it can undermine the value of your home. After a few years, when you are ready to sell, these items might be old-fashioned and require replacement. 

Pros

  • These items might make your kitchen look relevant and modern. 

Cons

  • They will require to remodel once the trend fades away.    

Our Recommendation

  • Choose styles in cabinetry and countertops that are timeless. Some examples are backsplash tile, cabinet hardware, and moderate lighting.  

9. Lack Of Storage Space

Your kitchen has to accommodate everything from the storage of dry ingredients to fresh food, herbs, cooking oils, crockery, cleaning materials and utensils such as pots and pans. These things are stored in the cabinets fitted in the walls. Having a sufficient number of cabinets is mandatory to maintain an organized kitchen.  

During the renovation, the kitchen walls are brought down to have a more open-concept feel. While doing so, the storage space with cabinets is also removed. This kind of renovation can decrease the value of your home because it reduces the storage capacity of your kitchen. 

Pros

  • Your kitchen could look and feel more open. 

Cons

  • The storage capacity of the kitchen is reduced. 

Our Recommendation

We recommend the following solutions to improve the storage capacity of your kitchen while maintaining the open space feel. 

  • Add floating shelves. 
  • Add full-extension pullout shelves in your cabinets. They enable you to easily view everything inside and pull it out conveniently. 
  • Consider replacing upper cabinets with beautiful styles of open shelving. It is a great way to save money and create an opportunity to show off your personality. 
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10. Laminate Countertops

Laminate countertops are a popular and affordable option. They also mimic high-end surfaces like stone or marble. However, they are not very durable. They might not get the tick of approval from a potential buyer. 

Pros

  • They require low maintenance. 
  • They are available in many styles and colours.
  • They are quite affordable. 

Cons

  • They are prone to scratching, burns and staining. 
  • The moisture can easily damage its surface.   

Our Recommendation

  • We recommend installing a granite top which is a popular, long-lasting but moderately expensive choice. Installing a granite top is likely to win the approval of most buyers because it resists heat, and scratches, lasts longer and requires low maintenance. It is believed that a granite top or floor in the kitchen can add around 25% of its retail value to a home.

11. Too Much Lighting

Over-lighting can make you feel washed out and sterile. Too much lighting is as bad as too less lighting. It can create the wrong mood and negatively impact potential buyers. 

Pros

  • Sufficient light can help in cooking. 

Cons

  • Too much light is a health hazard as it can strain your eyes. 
  • It can strike the wrong mood.

Our Recommendation

  • Use two to three light sources instead of more. 
  • Use the lights with dimmer switches. 
  • Use under-cabinet and in-cabinet lighting. 

12. Installing Taller Cabinets Above The Counter

During a renovation project, you might end up increasing the height of the cabinets in your kitchen. However, it could result in a greater problem i.e. insufficient space above your countertop. Sometimes the top of the counter is very close to the bottom of cabinets located above and it makes it very difficult to place your appliance like an air fryer, gourmet coffee maker, stand mixer etc.) 

Pros

  • More storage space in the cabinets.

Cons

  • Not having enough clearance

Our Recommendation

  • We recommend installing a granite top which is a popular, long-lasting but moderately expensive choice. Installing a granite top is likely to win the approval of most buyers because it resists heat, and scratches, lasts longer and requires low maintenance. It is believed that a granite top or floor in the kitchen can add around 25% of its retail value to a home.

13. Cabinet Doors Opening Against Each Other

When you install new cabinets, you should make sure that there is enough room for opening ovens, dishwasher and cabinet doors, without blocking the flow. You might want to utilize the potential of your kitchen space. However, don’t sacrifice comfort and safety. When cabinet doors open against each other, it can not only damage your installation but also hurt people. 

Pros

  • It results in improving storage space in the kitchen. 

Cons

  • You might end up not having enough clearance. It can result in cabinet doors opening against each other or hurting people. 

Our Recommendation

  • Make sure you can open your appliances and cabinet doors without blocking each other.

14. Installing Stove, Refrigerator and Sink Far Away

No matter how shrewd your renovation is, your kitchen won’t be functional if your key appliances are far away from each other. You should create a chef’s triangle between your stove, sink and refrigerator. When you install these work elements close to each other, your kitchen will be more functional and potential buyers will look upon it favourably. 

Pros

  • You will have more open space in the kitchen

Cons

  • You need to spend more energy moving between the three work elements. 

Our Recommendation

  • Install stove, sink and refrigerator close to each other but not too close. 

15. Choosing The Wrong Flooring

The kitchen is the most accident-prone space in your house. If you choose the flooring that can damage very quickly, it diminishes the aesthetic appeal of your home. Some people tend to choose hardwood floors for their kitchens. If it is not treated and maintained, it can damage quickly.

Homeowners also need to remember that materials can look very different in a store than they do in actual space. Take your time, and bring the samples of materials home to see how they come together in the lighting of the space you are renovating.

Pros

  • Hardwood floor has a beautiful, timeless appearance.  

Cons

  • Hardwood floors can be slippery. 
  • They can easily damage. 
  • They might not look nice in the actual space of your house.

Our Recommendation

  • Choose a pre-finished hardwood floor. 
  • You can also choose a textured finish like hand-scraped, distressed, or reclaimed wood as it provides more traction. 
  • Choose rugs, or mats in front of the fridge, sink or dishwasher where slips are most likely to happen. 
  • Bring the sample of flooring tile home to see how they look in actual space.
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Top Kitchen Designs For Inspiration

Let us discuss some of the kitchen ideas that can wow your potential buyers. 

1. Opened Up Space

Curvy Kitchen Island

This house had a dark and outdated kitchen. Yvone Whelan planned the renovation. The new kitchen resulted in sufficient space and a large island for eating. Two large-sized pendants add warmth and glamour to the kitchen. Well-thought-out lighting and careful placement of appliances and hardware make all the difference. 

2. Streaky Marble

Streaky Marble

Sarah Birnie, a Toronto-based interior designer, incorporates marble in this design. Bold backsplashes and countertops make a statement. You can always replace black with other colours like green, blue or pink.  

3. Mix Of Modern Materials

Mix Of Modern Materials

Designed by Interior Design Solutions, this kitchen uses a variety of modern materials and design trends like an oak island, white cabinets, an island with waterfall sides, stainless steel feature cabinets etc. These materials and designs are timeless and will be loved by your potential buyers. 

4. Curvy Kitchen Island

Curvy Kitchen Island

Noam Hazan Design Studio used curvy islands in this kitchen with a white quartzite top. Curvy islands are safer for small kids as they are less likely to cause an accident. 

5. Add Some Plants

Add Some Plants

This kitchen features a biophilic design by Noam Hazan Design Studio. A biophilic design is a trend in which materials replicate the natural world or plants are added. This kitchen stands out because of its use of earthy colours in cabinets and floors. The plants are displayed in a suspended trough.

Conclusion

The key to a successful kitchen remodel is careful planning. It is easy to get caught up in the excitement. Remember the purpose of a kitchen renovation is to make it more comfortable and increase your home’s value. If you are looking forward to renovating your kitchen before selling your home, plan and budget it carefully. Follow the tips given above and take inspiration from the ideas. 

Are you looking forward to selling your home after the kitchen renovation? Connect with an expert realtor like Labrosse to get started. Book a consultation today. 

FAQS

These include cheap flooring or inexpensive countertops. Too much or too little lighting or DIY plumbing and fixtures could also decrease the value of your home.

Installing cabinets is the biggest expense in a kitchen remodel. 

Light neutrals are a good choice for a kitchen. Many people prefer white or light grey as their favourite colours for a kitchen. 

What is task lighting?

Task lighting focuses light on a specific area to help you better accomplish an activity, like cooking or eating. An island chandelier or pendant lights hung over a table are examples of task lighting. Sometimes, wall lights can also add task lighting over a specific work ar.

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