Blog,  Home Improvement

My Kitchen Remodel Regrets and How to Avoid Them

A kitchen remodel is a big deal, as the kitchen is one of the most used rooms in the home. When a kitchen isn’t designed just right, it can cause some serious regrets down the road.

I survived a live-in kitchen remodel, and am bummed to admit that my kitchen isn’t quite everything I dreamed of. While it’s a huge improvement over what I was working with before, I have some kitchen remodel regrets that I’d go back and change if I could.

Kitchen Remodel Regrets

Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. All opinions in this post remain my own. See my Disclosures for more info.

Kitchen Remodel Regret #1

My greatest regret from my kitchen remodel is placing my slide-in stove in the island. It seemed like a good idea at the time and made the most sense in my design. Or so I thought. Now that I have lived with it for nearly three years, here is what I don’t like about it:

  • It’s always in the way. There is a lip between the stove and the counter, which can make it difficult when using the island as a work surface. I wish it were one big countertop because the island is a great size to use as a food prep surface. And don’t even get me started on the amount of food and drinks that get spilled between the oven and countertop.
  • After using a burner, we can’t use that part of the stovetop as a work surface. The burner is still hot, and we have forgotten and placed things on said burner before.
  • The knobs are easy to bump into. When working in the kitchen, I can’t count how many times we’ve bumped a burner knob and turned on a low heat setting. Not cool. (no pun intended 😉) My kids (or even us adults) could easily get burned, plus it’s a fire hazard if we were to place things on the hot burner without realizing it was on.
  • When the oven is hot, heat is released at the back of the stovetop. My kids like to sit on my island when we’re cooking, and this can be a burn hazard for them.

How Would I Fix It?

  • This is likely an unpopular fix/choice, but it’s my favorite for my kitchen. I’d remove the slide-in stove and replace it with a built-in wall oven. Which means there would be no burners on top. The existing cutout countertop would be replaced with a full slab that is perfect for meal prep. We don’t use our burners that often, so we’d use electric countertop burners that could be hidden away when not in use.
  • The other option is to find adequate space to place the stove between other cabinets. Trust me, it would be worth losing that countertop space to have the full island available.

Kitchen Remodel Regret #2

My second remodel regret (which was almost first) is that I didn’t install pull-out shelves in my cabinets. I had them in my old house and they were AMAZING. But, for whatever dumb reason, I didn’t include them in my kitchen remodel.

If you’ve never had pull-out shelves, then you’re seriously missing out. Here’s why:

  • They help keep cabinets more organized because they can be pulled out, items can be rearranged, then slid back in. I currently shove as much crap into the cabinets as possible and you’d be scared by the state of my cabinets. I mean, sometimes the doors won’t even shut. It’s like looking into the Great Abyss. 
  • When the shelves are pulled out, you can actually see what’s stored there. Which is much better than not being able to see what’s in back and forgetting what you own.

How Would I Fix It?

Well, that’s easy. I’d just go back and BUY FLIPPING CABINETS with pull-out shelves. Really though, if you’re in a kitchen remodel that consists of new cabinets, splurge a little and get the pull-out shelves. I promise you will not regret it.

Since this isn’t an option for me anymore, I’m wanting to make some DIY pull-out shelves. When I decide to tackle it, I’ll be following the instructions from The Navage Patch. They’re SO good and can be customized to fit each individual cabinet.

Kitchen Remodel Regret #3

My final regret is I wish I hadn’t chosen so much white in my kitchen. The walls, the cabinets, the backsplash, even the countertops – are mostly white. And don’t get me wrong – many people love that look. But it’s not for me. Without my decor to add color and character, my kitchen feels cold and clinical. And my whole goal is to make my home a warm and welcoming place for my family and friends.

kitchen remodel regret #3

How Would I Fix It?

I’m slowly working on adding color to my kitchen. And by color, I only mean not-white. The colors don’t have to be wild – I love neutral and muted colors. This is probably the easiest of my three kitchen remodel regrets to fix because your style can change over time and these are fairly simple and inexpensive fixes. Heck, even if you’re not doing a full-on remodel, you can add character to your kitchen by trying these.

  • Use decor to add color. This is the simplest and most budget-friendly way to solve this problem. Add plants and flowers, neutral-colored kitchenware, and hang art or signs to bring color to the room.
  • Pick a focal point in your kitchen and give it a colorful update. This can be painting the island or base cabinets a contrasting color, painting the pantry door, or updating the wall color behind floating shelves.
  • Add wood tones to your kitchen. This is my favorite way of adding color, not only to my kitchen but throughout my entire home. Once I installed the floating shelves in my kitchen, the room had a new feel. I love the warmth they add, plus they supply a base for colorful and textured decor.
  • Speaking of textures. Incorporate reclaimed wood barstools, woven light fixtures, a wooden hood vent, or brick backsplash as other ways to break up the white. These are a great way to incorporate other natural elements in the kitchen to add subtle texture.

Ultimately, the most important tip to avoid kitchen remodel regrets is to take the time to do it right. Plan, prepare, and do your research. Doing so will ensure you can create a kitchen that reflects your own unique style that you can enjoy for years to come.