Questions to Ask Before Remodeling Your Kitchen or Bath

October 17, 2018
Photo Courtesy of Ron Jacques, general manager of TR Young Services

Whether you are considering renovating your home to enjoy the new features yourself or you’re preparing it to sell, there are several questions you should ask before beginning the process. From minor bathroom renovations to major kitchen remodels, it is a big investment that should be well thought through to ensure it runs smoothly from design to completion.

According to a few experts in the home remodeling industry, here are questions you should consider asking before remodeling your kitchen or bath.

What is your timeline in the house? Are you interested in selling immediately or do you plan to live in your home long term? If you’re considering remodeling and you plan to be in your home for many years after, you’ll probably want to invest more, whereas if you are doing the renovation to sell, you might not want to spend as much, explains Andrew Blate, co-owner of Beautiful Home Services, a partner of Long & Foster’s Home Service Connections.

What is your budget? Kitchen and bath renovations can range from a few thousand dollars to tens of thousands of dollars, depending on the extent of the remodel, suggests Ron Jacques, general manager of TR Young Services, a partner of Long & Foster’s Home Service Connections.  It is important to determine the max that you’d like to spend before committing to remodeling your home. Your price range will determine several factors, such as design and materials, and help guide you throughout the process.

What are your priorities? From adding a second vanity in your master bathroom to creating a kitchen that is suited to entertain, determining your must-haves will help you prioritize your remodel, suggests Blate. What do you dislike about your current kitchen or bathroom? While you may simply be looking for a more modern, updated design, there may also be pain points you’d like to eliminate, such as the need for more counter space or safety accommodations as you age in your home.

How long will the renovation take and how do you work around it? The length of time a renovation takes varies based on several factors. Are you doing a facelift or a major upgrade? Who is doing the work – yourself or a professional general contractor? A minor hallway bathroom renovation can usually be completed within 7-10 working days, while an extensive kitchen remodel can take up to 6 weeks. “We typically work on different components at a time, so you can have part of your kitchen for as much of the project as possible,” said Blate. If you know you’re going to be without your kitchen for an extended period of time, it is important to budget for a meal plan as you may have to eat out more than normal, recommends Jacques. You may even consider setting up a secondary space, where you can eat with access to small appliances, such as a microwave or coffee pot.

What does the estimate include? If you’re working with a general contractor, they should provide a detailed written estimate. The contract should be extremely specific about who is responsible for what, suggests Blate. Be sure to review and understand the estimate before they begin working on your home. Are materials included? Is the trade-specific labor included or do you need to hire additional professionals, such as an electrician or a plumber? If they come across an issue, such as water damage or mold, will resolving that be an additional cost? Having a clear understanding of the estimate and what is included is vital in the planning process of remodeling your kitchen or bath. If you are working with a professional contractor, it is important to look at their qualifications – make sure they’re licensed, insured and qualified to do the work, recommends Jacques.

Remodeling your kitchen or bath can be a great investment, as many buyers look for homes with modern, updated design. Or you too can enjoy the new features! But either way, be sure to ask yourself all the important questions beforehand to ensure you have a successful remodel.


  1. Kendra Johnson

    October 23, 2018

    Hi Kendra & Reggie:

    I just thought this article might have some helpful tips regarding your home improvements. I was passing by in your neighborhood a week or so ago, and saw that you are busy with the maintenance items you had mentioned, as I saw workmen on the outside of the house on ladders.

    Montgomery County Realtors are in the midst of preparing for major Multiple Listing Service expansion and changes in how the system will operate. Effective October 30, our present MRIS will be gone, and the new “Bright” MLS will be fully effective. At present, agents are becoming introduced and acclimated to working with the new system. Just yesterday, I attended two training classes for Bright.

    Have a super day!

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