Kitchens are the most expensive room in the house to renovate. Not only do you need to consider all the finish materials like tile, counter tops, appliances, cabinets, etc. but then you also need to factor in the cost heavy plumbing, electric and mechanical work. Then, you still need to factor in appliances and fixtures.

As supply chain issues a persist and materials costs continue to rise. All of these factors can make it incredible difficult to stay on budget – especially as clients have HGTV, Pinterest and Instagram-worthy homes they look to for design inspiration.

Of course, appliance costs can impact the cost of a projects, but sometimes homeowners don’t realize how much. Panel front refrigerators costs more to both make and install than a traditional stainless-steel refrigerator. Homeowners often compare the cost of appliances on the face value, without understanding some of the nuances that can impact the price behind the scenes.

For example, high output ranges require larger gas lines (3/4” vs ½” (standard). Built in ranges cost more to install than free standing. Additionally, large capacity exhaust vents hoods > 300CFM require interlocked make up air intake systems. Manufacturer’s clearance specification of gas appliance can have requirements that are different, and often stricter, than the building code – and also superseded the code. This could include clearance from combustible surface v. a combustible wall.

There are a number of other things that can pop up and add unexpected costs to the project, including:

  • Electrical System Capacity – A standard new kitchen requires a minimum of 7 circuits. One of the first questions to ask is whether there enough room in the panel to accommodate these circuits. If a sub panel is needed, that is an extra cost, as well as the service large enough to supply the additional power load of the kitchen appliances.
  • Concealed rot/insect damage – When the walls are opened, there can be issues exposed that will need to be addressed.
  • Relocation of plumbing drains – When you move a sink, even just a few inches, it may extend the waste arm from the vent pipe further than what’s allowed by code, which could require additional plumbing work.
  • Old house – Knob and tube wiring, once exposed, is required to be removed.

Keep an eye out for more home construction and renovation tips!