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4 Steps to Get Organized for Kitchen Construction

The most important actions to take when preparing for a kitchen construction project are to avoid denial and to prepare. Everything you need to do fits into one of these categories. But how can you specifically get ready for the first day of construction?

Here are 4 Steps to Get Organized for Kitchen Construction

1. Make a List of Essential Supplies Needed When Construction Starts

Did you order the sink and faucet? Have you scheduled the appliance delivery? When work starts, life can become much more chaotic. Tasks like ordering a sink may slip through the cracks, leaving you rushing when the contractor requests something.

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2. Define Expectations With Your Contractor

It’s not just about communicating your expectations to the contractor; it’s also about the contractor and other professionals informing you of what is realistic. This will lead to a happier client and a smoother process overall.

As the homeowner, you do have some control over the schedule. Delays in finalizing decisions can result in significant setbacks.

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Remember to be courteous to your neighbors and ask the contractor to do the same. Inform your neighbors about the upcoming construction project and the presence of crews. Encourage them to inform you if any issues arise. Common concerns include noise, debris, and street blockages due to deliveries.

Schedule a weekly construction meeting to stay updated with your contractors and other professionals. You might not need it every week, but having it on the calendar ensures it’s available if necessary.

Here are some points to consider and discuss with your contractor:

  • Duration of the construction.
  • Strategies to prevent delays, such as having all products onsite and avoiding in-field design changes.
  • Dust control methods and how the construction area will be separated from the rest of the house.
  • Debris removal plans, whether using a Dumpster or storing debris in the garage for phased removal.
  • Designated areas for the crew, including tool staging, wood and tile cutting, and available bathroom facilities.
  • Cleanup expectations, noting that some contractors clean daily while others do not, and understanding that certain requests might increase costs.
  • Times you need to vacate the house for floor refinishing, the duration, and the types of products used, ensuring they meet your low-VOC standards.
  • Acceptable working hours for the crew, including weekends, and arrangements for keys and alarm codes.

3. Remove Everything From Your Cabinets

Now that you’ve handled the necessary tasks, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and dive in. Instead of dreading it, see this as an opportunity for some thorough spring cleaning. Rather than procrastinating and leaving the organizing until the last minute, tackle it now to make the process of moving back in more enjoyable. However, if you’re feeling overwhelmed with other commitments, remember that it can always be addressed later.

Start by packing away items you won’t need for a few months into boxes or, even better, large plastic bins with lids to shield them from dirt and dust. Set aside what you’ll require for your temporary kitchen: essentials like knives, coffee mugs, perishable food items, and maybe even a few wine glasses. After all, who says you have to settle for plastic cups the whole time?

4. Establish a makeshift kitchen.

The more organized and prepared you are in this regard, the more content you’ll feel. A half-hearted attempt at setting up a temporary kitchen isn’t advisable. Even if you don’t have children and intend to dine out frequently, having a space to prepare a quick snack or a cup of coffee is essential.

I recommend having two tables, and if space permits, two tables plus the kitchen table for seating. If you don’t have an extra table, consider purchasing a couple of folding tables—preferably 24 or 30 inches deep, and whatever length fits your space (avoid the 48-inch square ones, which are too large for countertop use). If you’re using a table from your home, consider getting a plastic-coated tablecloth to protect it.


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