It’s All About the Journey … Kicking off the New Year in the Kitchen

The kitchen is known as the heart of the home – and for good reason!  It’s the central hub for daily life and a natural gathering space at any time of year.  An up-to-date kitchen is always a major selling point for any home.  If your kitchen has seen better days, but you’re not up for the task or expense of major construction, there is an alternative. A minor kitchen remodel actually offers a better return on investment than a major redesign, and can be done in stages.   If you have a dated kitchen, a buyer might think they’re going to have to spend $40 – $50,000 to upgrade the kitchen, but the average cost of a minor kitchen remodel – new cabinet doors, appliances, countertops, sink, faucet, paint and hardware – was around $21,000 in New England, specifically the New Haven area, according to the Cost vs. Value report, (of course the Gold Coast of CT will probably be a little higher). Savvy shoppers can do it for less than the buyer assumes.  To make sure you’re making the right improvements, let’s take a look at the top kitchen trends for 2016.

Soft Muted Color Palettes – though white motifs still dominate, everything from cabinets to backsplashes will be done in less saturated tones.  According to designer Jane Lockhart “Charcoal, grays and even neutral pastels like pale blue, pale green gray and tinted whites are the new alternative to the standard white.” Lighter wood tones will also be popular, including walnut, and white washed woods.

Smart Spaces – Lockhart predicts more kitchens will have designated spots with accessible charging stations for smart devices like phones and tablets. Smart appliances such as built in coffee machines, steam ovens and wine coolers will also be popular for a generation of people on the go.

Metal Finishes – brass accessories will make a comeback but in satin rather than shiny finishes. All Metal will assume a more dominant role in kitchen aesthetics from faucets, pendant lights and cabinet pulls and will be the range hood of choice.  If you have a muted color palette, metal accents introduce a burst of contrast into your kitchen.

Quartz is Number One – according to the National Kitchen and Bath Association, manufactured quartz is now the leading countertop material, surpassing granite and marble.  Quartz is virtually maintenance free, naturally stain repellent and impervious to acidic foods.  White quartz counter tops and neutral colors will continue for 2016.

Appliances – stainless is still the number one choice for appliances – Black stainless appliances which are more muted, as well as  smudge free stainless are becoming more popular echoing the less maintenance trend.


      Traditional Yet Simple Design – traditional kitchens may experience a slightly cleaner feel with bold lines and less fussy details.  The focus will be an emphasis on key elements like hoods, islands, cabinet crown molding to name a few.


 Lighting – ceiling lights and table lamps won’t be enough to illuminate the kitchen.  Designers point to extensive cabinet lighting as a trend to watch.  Low-voltage light tape strips used as accent pieces below cabinets and below countertop overhangs will be the norm. These features will be grouped with recessed can lights to offer better mood-setting capabilities.

Simplicity, Convenience and Color- what everyone is looking for and slated to give you the best return on your investment!


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