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How to Pick Appliances for Your Kitchen

Appliances may be the biggest and most important investment when remodeling your kitchen. Those with professions that require heavy amounts of cooking or baking may be able to justify more high-end appliances, but that isn’t always the case for most homeowners. With many mid-high range appliances on the market, quality designs and high-performance appliances are available to everyone. Knowing which appliances are best suited for your lifestyle and space are important before proceeding with your search. 

Different Types of Appliances: 

Before you begin researching shapes, styles, and sizes, create a budget that best fits your personal finances. It is possible to get exactly what you want in your kitchen with the proper budget and realistic planning. There are many factors to consider for each individual appliance, which is why we recommend establishing your top priorities prior to your search in order to find appliances that best satisfy your needs/wants. 

Sink – Sinks are often dismissed in the planning process. If you plan on using your kitchen regularly, a large, durable sink may be a good investment. If you have small children, it’s likely you’re going to get good use out of your sink. Also keep in mind that if you splurged on your countertop and your sink has to be prematurely replaced, it’s possible your countertop may have to be lifted in the process – which can be very pricey. It’s possible to get high-quality sinks at an affordable price point though! While many styles, such as barn sinks, can often be a bit pricey, websites like Amazon and Overstock have great options at affordable prices. 

Dishwasher – There are many options when it comes to dishwasher designs. While your traditional pull-down dishwasher remains the most popular, dishwasher drawers are growing in demand. There are many benefits to dishwasher drawers, especially for kitchens with limited space. They typically occupy a small amount of space (relative to a cabinet), and offer the same capacity as a standard dishwasher. Stacking them for a double dishwasher is also an option, which provides more space without having to deal with potential blockage from a traditional pull-down door. Drawer Dishwashers are also more energy efficient than your standard dishwasher. While they may sound like a no-brainer, drawer dishwashers are a pricier option and don’t have a great repair history. However, your traditional dishwasher is still a great option for many homes, and can complement any style. If visual space is your biggest concern, dishwashers can be mounted to a floating island for more concealment or paneled to blend in with cabinetry. 

Microwave – Microwaves generally take up a generous amount of space no matter where they’re placed. Whether you choose to build them into the cabinetry or place them on the countertop is all personal preference. Microwave drawers are also an option if you simply want to conceal your microwave. If you have limited counter space, a built-in microwave may be a better option for your space, and vice-versa. If you want to avoid purchasing a double-oven but could use the extra convenience, consider a convection microwave, which also works as a fast-speed oven. 

Refrigerator/Freezer – Be realistic about how much storage space you need before you start your search. There are many options for your refrigerator installment, such as counter-depth, full-depth, or a built-in. When considering the actual model, keep performance and practicality in mind. Refrigerators with built in ice-machines are often convenient and a practical investment for family households. While many with smart-technology can be more expensive than others, you can get a standard, quality fridge for a fair price. When evaluating performance, a dual-processor may be an extra investment but will keep fresh-produce alive longer for families who have to purchase groceries in mass amounts. 

Cooktop – When choosing a cooktop, consider efficiency. While the choice is entirely personal, you lose about half of the heat from the burner to pan with a gas stove, making it work twice as hard. You lose the least amount of heat with an induction stove and it heats up quickly. Induction stove tops also don’t get hot, which means you or your children can safely touch the stove without getting burned. However, electric stovetops are also a dependable and visually appealing option with their minimal appearance. 

Range Hood – A ventilation system is a seriously important element to any kitchen if you intend on using any of your cooking appliances. Some vent hoods have various features, such as additional fans, underhead lighting, and interior/exterior motors. Some may also be louder than others when in use. Do research on the features and noise quality before you set your heart on a singular style. 

Oven – If you’ve chosen to do a separate stove-top from your oven, the possibilities are endless when it comes to the design and placement of your oven. While the traditional layout is always an option, separating your oven from the stove-top allows for you to implement details such as a double-oven, wall oven or steam oven. If your oven is going to undergo considerable use, consider getting a convection oven, which cooks faster and more evenly. 

Tips for Picking the Best Appliances: 

Kitchen Layout – Be realistic with your layout. If space doesn’t allow for a bigger fridge, a double-oven, or any additional features, you may have to compromise and weigh out your priorities. While it’s always possible to find a way to make a small space functional and aesthetically pleasing, you have to be realistic with your vision. 

Design – Use a visual guide. Using apps such as pinterest to help you plan will not only give you a better understanding of what you want in your layout, but will also help you narrow down the styles and design elements you fancy. This will also help your contractor have a clear understanding of the look and ambiance you’re striving to achieve in your space. 

Material and Color – There is a vast array of options when it comes to selecting the material of your appliances. Stainless steel being the most popular, can often be pricey, but looks sleek in any space and is easy to clean. There are many finishes to choose from, whether that be glossy, matte, or a paneled look. Color is also an important element to consider, as some colors may be more subtle or may make your appliances more of a focal point. If you want a cohesive design, opt for a color that blends well with your space. White pairs with any style, and looks especially clean in modern homes. Black can also be an elegant contrast, as it pairs well with light cabinetry. 

Be Consistent – Mixing metals can be visually pleasing if done properly, but it’s often best to stick to one finish. If you decide to use a black refrigerator, match the rest of your appliances to that finish. This will make your search process simpler and create a more cohesive space. This will also help you avoid trendy choices that you may regret later. 

Traffic and Usage – Be aware of how often people are going to be in and out of your kitchen, as well as how often your appliances are going to be used. If your kitchen is going to experience heavy traffic and usage, it may be a smart investment to purchase durable and easy to clean appliances. You don’t want to have to spend more money replacing cheap appliances, so make an executive decision from the initial remodel.