Your Fairfax County Kitchen Remodel: What Comes First?

Everyone knows that time is money. Remodeling your kitchen in the right order makes for maximum cost savings and efficiency. The more you understand about the order in which things happen with your kitchen remodel, the more prepared you’ll be for what comes up – and the sooner you’ll be enjoying your new space!

It Starts with a Plan

It all begins with thinking about what you need, which is often different from what you want.

  1. How do you use your kitchen? What layout and features best fit your family’s lifestyle? Write down in a journal a week’s worth of kitchen activities – everything from meal prep to kids doing homework, etc.
  2. What are your priorities? How many cooks in the family? Do you entertain large groups? Have big family get-togethers?
  3. Is your existing footprint sufficient? Do you need an addition?

If you haven’t already, start collecting images of kitchens with features that suit your family’s lifestyle. Start a Houzz Ideabook, use color-coded folders for magazine pages, and Pinterest boards to organize your favorite looks.

Once you’re ready to take the plunge, it’s on to formulating the scope of work and figuring out your preliminary budget. At Foley, our remodeling process carefully walks you through these important steps. Budget and scope are intertwined and often go through several changes before the actual design work begins. We also take care of preliminary tasks like contracts and permits, have designers who can help you choose finishes and fixtures, and we even help you set up a temporary kitchen.

After the design is finalized and approved, you can expect your kitchen remodel to proceed in this order:

  • Protection and Demolition involves protecting the work area with plastic, floor mats, paper, and/or plywood. Demolition can be the messiest part of the job, but it can also be exciting to see the work begin. Demo involves tearing out all the old “stuff” and disposing of what will not be repurposed.
  • Rough Framing is exactly what it sounds like: the new kitchen is framed out. Inspectors will come after framing is complete and give the go-ahead for the next step.
  • Rough ins are the piping, ductwork, and electrical wiring that get run after framing. Each trade has their own inspector come in once their work is complete. Once all the rough ins are approved, the walls are closed up.
  • Insulation and Air Sealing is next, followed by Drywall Install and Finishing. This is also an exciting time for homeowners, as they can now see how the room will look when complete.
  • Tile, Paint and Flooring. The finishes phase takes time to do properly, but the results are worth it!
  • Cabinets, Doors, Windows, and Millwork. The cabinets are hung first, followed by the base cabinets.
  • Counters are put in after the base cabinets are installed. The sink and faucet are installed now as well.
  • Plumbing, Electrical and Appliances. The electricians and plumbers now install fixtures, plates, and the HVAC system. At this point in the process, your new kitchen is fully functional, but there are still details to be taken care of.
  • Punch List Preparation. A good punch list defines all items that need to be addressed before final occupancy, and include a plan for completion. You and your project manager do a walkthrough to see what work remains to be finished. A “punch list” is created which typically includes things like paint touch-ups, missing hardware, and installation of parts that haven’t yet arrived.
  • Clean Up and Move Out. The last touchups and cleaning are done. Everything construction-related is packed up and removed, and any dumpsters or portable bathroom facilities are removed.

Learn More

Whether you’re contemplating a kitchen remodel or looking for kitchen design ideas for your Northern VA home, we can help bring your personal vision to life. A kitchen remodel is a big investment, one of the most expensive remodeling projects you can do. Contact us today to learn more about Fairfax kitchen design and our complete home remodeling process.