How Long Should The Average Kitchen Remodel Take?

There’s no doubt that a kitchen remodels project is one of the largest undertakings you’ll tackle as a homeowner. For starters, there are many more things to consider when gutting and rebuilding your kitchen than there are when you decide to update a family room or a bedroom, for example. A kitchen remodels usually also comes with a higher price tag.  Even considering the difficulty and the cost, a kitchen remodel is a great way to make your home more functional for you and your family, and increase your home’s resale value.  Regardless of the size of the project, one question invariably becomes top of mind: how long will this project take to complete?

How Long Will My Renovation Project Take?

For many homeowners embarking upon a kitchen renovation, this is perhaps the most important question of all: how long will I need to live in an active job site? How long will I need to eat takeout? When will my life go back to normal? While there are no hard and fast answers to these questions, most contractors and design experts say to expect your project to take between four to eight weeks. Though it may seem like a large disparity between the former and latter estimates, you need to remember that things such as the complexity of the job, the availability of materials, and a host of other difficult-to-anticipate hurdles can make narrowing down a timeframe a difficult task.

The best way to get an accurate estimate about the project is to list off all the tasks that need to be completed and determine what a reasonable time is for that task to be completed. The next section will help you identify the main tasks that typically make up a standard kitchen renovation project.

Identify Tasks That Will Be A Part Of The Larger Job

Every renovation project is different. With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the common subtasks that need to be done before you can wrap up your project.

  • Design considerations. This is the exciting initial step in the renovation process, but it comes with its challenges. If you know what you want and you are decisive in your choices, this can be a relatively quick and enjoyable task. However, if you have trouble making decisions or tend to doubt your choices, you might want to enlist some professional design help to keep the project moving in the right direction.
  • Demolition. Regardless of how much of your kitchen will be demolished, most demolitions are completed within a day or two.
  • Framing. If you’re altering the physical layout of your kitchen, the room will need to be reframed. This is not an overly time-consuming task, but you can expect framing to take a couple of days.
  • Roughing in for plumbing and electrical. If you’re changing the physical layout of the kitchen, which will affect the position of your appliances and sink, your contractor will need to install new pipes and wiring.
  • Cabinetry. Custom cabinetry is time-consuming work. Depending on the type of finish you’re looking for, you can expect your cabinets to take three to six weeks to make. To speed up your cabinetry renovation project, we highly recommend considering RTA cabinets. They are the hottest cabinet trend out there right now, and it’s super easy to order them online and have them delivered to your doorstep.Flooring. Some flooring styles go in easier than others, so it’s safe to say that while one style could take an afternoon to install, another may take a couple of days. 
  • Counters. If you’re going with a laminate countertop, it’ll generally be installed by the cabinet maker and won’t add any additional time to the project. If however, you’ve chosen something more high-end such as stone, an expert stonemason will have to perform the installation.

The Planning Process

If the previous list seems daunting, it can be made less so by sitting down and planning out the job. Start by determining how much you’re comfortable spending (be sure to include a buffer in case things don’t go exactly as planned) and list out, in priority, what you would like the project to entail. You can separate things in groups of “must-have” versus “nice to have” if you’re having trouble stretching your budget enough to cover the entire thing. It’s possible that you might have to hold off on some of the “nice to haves” if there is some urgency to the project.

Generally, it’s advisable that you get as much done at once as you can, as splitting up the jobs over time could end up costing you more in labor and increase the amount of time your kitchen will be unusable.

Create a checklist of tasks so you can follow the progress of the project and determine whether or not you’re on track to complete the renovation. While it might be tempting to hire the contractor with the lowest quote, seek out a professional with plenty of references who have the experience to get the job done right the first time, on time.

Could My Project Take Longer Than I Originally Expected?

Of course. Life is full of uncertainty and a kitchen remodel is not immune to the occasional hiccup. If necessary, line up a place to stay in your home that is not livable during the project or find someone who can look after family pets if they will be in the way. Make sure your budget can accommodate delays in the work. The point is you’ll be much better off if you prepare for the possibility that the work will not be completed when expected than you would be if you didn’t.

It’s relatively simple to estimate the duration of your kitchen renovation, provided you’ve given considerable thought to the work required and do your best to prepare for the unforeseen. Regardless of your level of preparedness, however, your best gauge on completion will be the company or contractor hired to do the work, so it’s important to keep the lines of communication open and respectful.

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