Renovating your kitchen can be one of the most trying, yet most rewarding, parts of remodeling your home. You could argue that it’s the most important room in your house. It’s where you cook. It’s where you eat. It’s certainly the room with the most “stuff” in it.
Naturally it should be beautiful, but what are you going to do during the weeks that you won’t have it? Follow these tips to survive your kitchen renovation.
Set up a mini kitchen somewhere else
Just because the kitchen is out of commission for the time being doesn’t mean you can’t still use your kitchen appliances. Take another room in your house with enough space and turn it into a temporary makeshift kitchen. Consider using another room with a sink in it (such as a laundry room).
You won’t be taking the oven or the stove with you, but those smaller appliances can come in handy. Grab the toaster, blender, stove-top grill, microwave, coffee maker and maybe even the fridge (depending on its size and your manual labor ability).
Or, if the thought of moving your kitchen-based activities to another room doesn’t appeal to you, consider planning your renovation in such a way that you’ll have limited kitchen access (your sink, a little counter space, etc.). You still won’t be able to do everything in there, but it’s better than nothing.
Don’t abandon healthy eating
Without your kitchen, you’ll be limited as to the foods you can bring into the house and how you can prepare them, but that doesn’t mean you have to survive on Chinese take-out and potato chips. There are plenty of healthy foods that are safe to store at any temperature and require little preparation. Nuts, granola bars and certain fruits are quick and healthy snack options, and you can grill chicken and steak on a stove-top grill if you have one.
Plus, if it’s warm enough outside, you can always fire up the grill a few nights a week. Nothing like some good ol’ fashioned BBQ to chase away the stresses of a renovation!
Keep plenty of disposables around
Another thing you won’t have on hand in your temporary kitchen is your dishwasher, and you’re not likely to have a sink either. Better stock up on paper plates, bowls and plastic forks. Unless you plan on showering with your dirty dishes, you won’t be able to clean them, but eating with disposable plates and silverware makes cleanup a breeze.
You can even continue using disposables after your new kitchen is finished. Like showering with your dishes, it saves time and money off the water bill, but you won’t have to pick food out from between your toes.
Collect coupons from restaurants ahead of time
With a limited ability to cook, going out to eat is always an easy option, but beware of the effect that could have on your wallet. Meals out are considerably more expensive than meals in, which is why you should only do it once in a while even when you do have a functional kitchen. Most restaurants, however, have coupons or offer occasional deals, so watch for those. Little savings add up, so when you do have to go out to eat, do it smart and your bank account will thank you for it.
Use someone else’s kitchen
A wise man once said “It’s better to have a friend with a kitchen than be the friend with the kitchen.” Well, he actually said boat, not kitchen, but if your kitchen is out of commission, you might as well use a friend’s.
You don’t learn to respect the value of a home-cooked meal till you haven’t had one for a while, so offer to buy ingredients and cook for a friend at their place. It’s a great opportunity for you and the family to get out of the house, plus your friends can get a nice home-cooked meal in the comfort of their own home, without having to do any actual cooking.
Just make sure you don’t stick them with any cleanup. That might be a deal-breaker.
And don’t forget, you’ll have a newly-renovated kitchen, complete with new kitchen cabinets and new appliances, in which that favor can be returned. Kitchen renovation may be a pain, but it will all pay off in the end.
About the Author
David Cormier is a blogger for a leading wood cabinet provider.