Remodeling your kitchen is one of the most exciting things you can do for your home.
Are your cabinets looking a little shabby? Does your tile floor look like it is always dirty? It may be time for an upgrade. A new kitchen remodel is one of the best investments you can make in your home.
A recent “before” picture. Our customers wanted us to take this kitchen from “meh” to “Marvelous.”
The kitchen is typically where the family spends most of their time when they are at home, and it’s the place where guests usually congregate. RJT Carpentry and Tile will help you upgrade that dated old kitchen with all of the modern amenities. Whether your job is large or small, we can offer you quality workmanship at a fair price. Then, you can sit back and relax while our skilled workers spring into action, creating your dream kitchen.
Before you hire any contractor it’s important to do your research. Get references from people you trust. Get online reviews. Go to some of the company’s current projects or talk to some of their current customers.
When you go, ask:
- How did the project go?
- How well did the contractor communicate with you?
- Was the contractor honest with you at every stage of the game?
What a contractor does at someone else’s house will mirror what they do at your house. The more homework you do on the person you hire the happier you will be with the end result. Don’t just look for the low number. You should concentrate on finding two to three estimates from really reputable contractors who specialize in remodeling.
Don’t just go with any type of company. You don’t want a deck guy, painter, or roofer in there rebuilding your kitchen. You want a qualified general contractor who can manage the entire process.
You also do not want to DIY this, or invite all of your friends to come gut your kitchen. While certain television shows make remodeling look like an easy weekend project it’s anything but. If you don’t understand what you are doing you could ruin your kitchen and destroy the value in your home.
Don’t try to act as a general contractor either…you’re not going to save any money or headaches by trying to hire a bunch of different types of people yourself. There’s a reason why general contractors are considered highly skilled professionals. The general contractor pulls all of the disparate elements of the project together into one cohesive whole. They have to know enough about every aspect of the project to do so.
And trust us, we’ve seen some bad situations in which people have ignored this advice! We went and looked at a job one week only to find the homeowner had ripped her walls and ceilings down. Of course, she’d never pulled a permit. Sadly, we will not help you if you’ve already to try to do some of the work yourself, and we cannot help you if some other contractor has already come in and made a mess of things.
This is because we can’t guarantee or warranty anything. We’d have to bring in an inspector who is going to be upset from the get-go. There are serious safety issues. Once someone starts tearing into the walls we don’t know if there are live wires in the wall, or whether we’ll see a plumbing leak in two weeks. These aren’t just things we’re worried about—they’re things you should be worried about, too!
When you hire a qualified general contractor you really only have to worry about two things: picking out materials and writing checks. That’s real peace of mind.
Be sure to look for a contractor who is willing to talk to you and educate you about what’s going on. If the contractor doesn’t have time to educate you then you shouldn’t have time to write him or her a check!
Types of Projects
There are two types of kitchen remodeling projects. The first type is a facelift, where we’re just switching out cabinets, or refacing and repainting them. Then there’s the full kitchen overhaul, where we’re going to update everything, including the plumbing and the wiring. At that point we’re gutting everything down to the floor sheeting and then rebuilding your kitchen from the ground up. This allows you to choose new flooring, backsplashes, tile, and countertops. There is, of course, some room for something in between.
Time to get down to the wires. Here you can see how we’ve stripped the kitchen down to the bare bones so we can create something totally new.
As you look around your kitchen, look at all of the different elements and decide what you’d like to see done. Think about:
- Wall Finishing
Any or all of these items may be addressed during the course of your remodeling project.
Design, and Project Scope
Want to just pick a kitchen out of a magazine or locate one on Houzz, then have us build it for you? We can do it for you. We love that kind of challenge, and we pride ourselves on being able to recreate just about any kitchen you can find.
However, you can also create something that is 100% unique and “you.” We do offer design services. Even so, it’s helpful to look at some photos so you can at least develop some sort of an idea about the kitchen you’d love to see in your home.
Either way, we’re going to start by coming in, sitting down, and talking to you about your project to determine the scope of work. Make sure you have some pictures or ideas about the kinds of things you like before making an appointment with us. This helps us generate some numbers and helps to speed the process.
If the estimate works for you we’ll give you a fixed price which includes the entire project, including the permit, debris fees, labor, and specified materials.
Budget is the biggest determinant of what you’ll be able to do in your kitchen. You need to have a firm idea of what you can spend before you meet with our designers. Make sure you understand the items which will really raise your costs so you will have a realistic understanding of what you can and cannot accomplish with your current remodel.
Keep in mind that there are things that you may not be able to see. The condition of your home “behind the walls” could add to the bottom line. These issues include:
• Dry rot
• Termite damage
• Pipe decay
• Insulation problems
Sadly, it’s impossible to give you even so much as a ballpark estimate on how much these repair items will cost. It depends on the time it takes and the amount of materials we need.
Fortunately, any good contractor with enough experience can usually look and give you some idea of potential problems and issues, as well as how to solve them. We always check current plumbing and electrical systems to let you know what’s going on before we settle on a final number.
This is important, because this is where shady contractors will rip you off. Some contractors don’t bother to check the electrical panels or pipes before they just toss out an estimate. They don’t inform you that they think you’re going to need new plumbing and electrical. They get you to sign the contract, and then hit you with 100 change orders which keep adding to the budget. We don’t do that—we believe in honesty and transparency from the get-go and do everything we can do to eliminate surprises.
Switching the layout of your kitchen will significantly impact your budget as well. If you’re going to change the layout at all you will need to change the location of plumbing and wiring. This can add a great deal to your estimate. Keep this in mind when you’re deciding on what you want done.
When we get started on your project we’re going to ask you to start by picking out, approving, and paying for the materials which we’ll be using. These materials would include tile, flooring, countertops, lighting, and fixtures. If you need help finding these items or need to know where to go, we can definitely help you with that. Some of our vendors do offer deep discounts!
Here are a couple of median prices for various elements. Keep in mind that these are just averages. Your mileage may vary.
• Appliances: $4594
• Cabinets: $8,634
• Counters: $3,306
• Fixtures & Sinks: $1,096
• Flooring: $1,987
• Lighting: $1,283
We’ve seen projects that cost $20,000 and we’ve seen projects that cost nearly $60,000. It just depends on what you want to have done and what kinds of materials you want to use.
If you are refacing the cabinets instead of replacing them, we’ll use the following process. We clean the cabinets with a PSP solution. We then give them a light sanding before priming them with Styx Primer, which is one of the best high-adhesion primers out there. We’ll then give them a second light sanding and another coat of primer. We’ll update their color with a Benjamin Oil Advanced Oil Finish Paint. This paint allows you to clean your cabinets with water. It’s beautiful and self-leveling—perfect for the kitchen.
If you want, we can also switch out the cabinet hardware. We can replace hinges. We can add pullouts and racks, too.
What if you want to replace the cabinets? You have lots of different options. We can use anything from the cabinets at big box stores to custom cabinet creations. The only thing you need to know about custom cabinetry is that these custom cabinets cannot be returned. On the other hand, they will be uniquely created for your kitchen and your kitchen alone.
When it comes to countertops you’ve got some serious options. Granite countertops are very popular, though they’re some of the most expensive countertops you can buy. They’re also capable of lasting forever, so they make a great investment. If you want something equally durable but less pricey, you can look into concrete countertops.
At midrange we have solid surface and laminate countertops. These are great because they’re low cost, decently durable, and come in a variety of colors. They’re also easy to repair if they ever get damaged.
Finally, there’s tile, which is a budget choice. You get some amazing color variety, but tile can be finicky. It’s the hardest to clean and the least durable choice. Still, many of our customers still enjoy the look of a pretty tile countertop.
Tile backsplashes are always the first type people think of because they’re in so many homes. But you still have a lot of other options.
Travertine, for example, is incredibly popular. This is a cross between marble and limestone. It’s a high-end, classy choice that is highly durable. It’s also the most expensive choice, so if you want the same level of durability with a bit less out-of-pocket cost you could go to stone as well.
The budget-conscious should be thinking about ceramic or Saltillo backsplashes. Ceramic backsplashes look great, and they come in an infinite variety of colors. Saltillo is a form of Mexican hand-pressed tile, and is great for kitchens with a Southwestern theme.
Any flooring you choose will need to be suitable to a wet environment. This means hardwood, tile, or laminate flooring. Hardwood is the most expensive; tile is the most durable. Tile and laminate are also the easiest to keep clean, and laminate is nice because it comes in such a wide range of colors. Still, many of our customers are in love with the look and feel of a gleaming hardwood floor, and hardwood floors can be treated so they stand up nicely to the kitchen environment.
Hardwood floors look gorgeous in this kitchen. Now we just have to get the appliances in place and this customer will be good to go.
We do offer heated flooring in the kitchen. However, it’s important to understand the purpose of the heated floor is not to heat the entire room. It’s just to heat the floor—to give you a nice, warm, toasty place for your feet when you wander into the kitchen to prepare your morning coffee.
Fixtures and Sinks
You’ve got an incredible variety of options here, so do your homework and look at as many pictures as you can find. The basic sink choices are double bowl, single bowl and apron front. Most customers prefer double bowl sinks, which are your typical kitchen sink, but the number of options takes off from there.
Faucets include bar faucets, bridge faucets, pullout faucets and widespread faucets. The differences here are usually aesthetic rather than functional, though a pullout faucet does give you the ability to detach the faucet in order to use it as a cleaning wand.
One thing that often sparks the desire to launch a kitchen remodel is the desire for certain extras like meal prep bars, pot racks, water filtration systems, under-cabinet lighting and even stove-side pot fillers. Want ultra-modern track lighting? We can do that, too.
If you want any of these extras now is certainly the time to ask for them!
We are happy to walk you through the entire project timeline from start to finish. As to how long the project will take that depends. Once you’ve hired a contractor the design stage usually takes 2 weeks, construction preparation (including permits) takes another week, and the actual construction can take 6 to 10 weeks after that. That’s just the kind of time it takes to get the job done right.
Some contractors will promise shorter timelines. We suggest being wary of those guys. If they can get the job done faster you’ve got to ask yourself why. What kinds of safety and quality considerations are they sacrificing on the altar of speed?
However, there is one thing you can do if you want us to move a little faster. Give us the ability to come in early and to stay late. If you’re only allowing us access to the home for four hours a day on business days only, then the whole project is going to move a lot slower. Give us what we need to put in a full, honest day’s work.
You also should make sure your kitchen is ready for us before the work starts. Remove all of your dishes, silverware, pots, and pans. Empty your fridge. If these things aren’t done when we show up it’s going to delay our ability to get started.
Why It’s So Important to Pull Permits
Pulling a permit is the first thing we do before we begin any project. Many of our competitors do not do this. This means the work is not getting a full inspection from a qualified third party. Contractors who don’t pull permits are almost certainly cutting corners. We’ve even seen jobs which have been utterly botched.
Remodeling jobs which are not up to code render your home unsafe. Working with a contractor who will not pull permits is one of the fastest ways to utterly ruin your home, which is not only your biggest investment but your place of safety and security.
Making sure the contractor pulls a permit protects you as well. Any licensed and insured contractor pays into a guaranteed fund. This means you can recoup some of your money if something goes wrong, but only if that contractor is licensed, is insured, and has pulled a permit.
Prepping for Your Project
We spend the first day or so of any project making sure the pathway to the project is protected. We also mask off any rooms which could be impacted by dust or debris. We are adamant about keeping a clean job site.
We also set up our own bathroom, because we don’t think it’s professional to use yours.
You see, 9 times out of 10 our customers continue to live in their homes while we are working on their project. That’s why we work so hard to keep everything protected: we want to keep the project from inconveniencing you as much as possible.
We dedicate the last half-hour of any day to cleaning. That means we’re taking the time to clean every single wall, all of the stairs, railings, and floors before we leave your house. We never, ever leave trash on site.
The Finished Product
It will be super exciting to watch your project grow and develop, but it will be even more exciting to step into your new, beautiful, finished kitchen.
New cabinets, granite countertops, gorgeous new appliances, track lighting, new flooring and a compact, useful new kitchen sink makes the kitchen a bright, friendly, and cheerful place to be.
You’ll be absolutely amazed at the results and the transformation that has taken place.
Our customers especially loved the compact round corner sink on this project, as well as the bright, cheerful and classy new look we were able to create.
Of course, before we go we’ll complete your final clean-up and check in with you to make sure you are 100% satisfied.
Why Hire RJT for Your Kitchen Remodeling Project?
First, we’ve got the experience to get the job done right. Most of our work is in the city, and we’ve been working here for years. After you work in a lot of those old brownstones you get a really good feel for what’s going on. Sometimes we’re able to do some troubleshooting over the phone, during the initial call.
We know how to give you, our customer, a phenomenal experience as well. Of course, you don’t have to take our word for it. We have over 75 5-star reviews across several review sites.
Are you ready to launch your new remodeling project? Contact us schedule your estimate today.