What's the average cost for a kitchen/great room remodel?

Answered by Jeffrey Anderson ~ November 11, 2012 ~ No Comments

I have a 1930 cape cod. Would like to gut the kitchen and open it up to the current dining room to create an open concept kitchen/family room. What's the average cost for this type of project?

Columbus, OH

Jeffrey Anderson

I'm afraid there are too many variables in a remodeling project such as you describe that can affect the total cost to provide an average price -- at least not without seeing the job. A few of them are beyond your control, such as whether there are any mechanical lines or electrical wires in the walls you hope to remove.

However, many of the issues that can determine whether your renovation is budget-friendly or at the high end of the typical cost range are totally up to you. I'm referring to the finishes you choose for the remodeled kitchen/great room.

You mention gutting the interior of your existing kitchen and dining room to create a large open room, but there are a lot of details that play a part in the total cost. One of the largest is what you plan to do about your existing kitchen cabinets -- if you intend to purchase new cabinets and countertops, they can add a significant expense to your project. The same is true with appliances -- a new refrigerator, range, and dishwasher can add several thousand dollars to your remodeling budget.

My suggestion would be to establish an amount you wish to spend on your renovation and then meet with several licensed contractors to discuss the project. They should have a pretty good idea of what's possible for what you hope to spend. They may also have some ideas on how you can trim costs during demolition that would free up some extra money for nicer flooring, wall coverings or light fixtures. Many remodeling contractors establish finish allowances for the project so the homeowners know exactly how much they have to spend when selecting fixtures.

A kitchen remodel can be one of the most difficult home improvement projects for families to stay within their budgets. There are constant temptations to make little changes from the original plans and to add little upgrades every step of the way. It's important that your contractor keeps you up-to-date on how much each of these little modifications is adding to your total price. Even better -- once you settle on a project cost and scope of work, don't make any changes. No one likes bad surprises -- especially when it involves how much you're paying for your kitchen remodel.

I hope I'm correct in assuming that you plan on hiring a contractor. If it's just a matter of removing a wall that has no wiring, plumbing, or HVAC lines, the renovation can be a DIY project. However, anything more involved in a kitchen should involve an experienced contractor.

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