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What Are the Steps to a Kitchen Remodel?

You’ve decided that it’s finally the right time to remodel your kitchen. But you didn’t come to this decision lightly and planning the steps to your kitchen remodel should be no different. By proactively anticipating what your kitchen remodel requires from start to finish, you’ll eliminate unnecessary stress later on. You’ll never go wrong with a plan – keep reading to craft yours!

Step 1: Planning and design

Time Needed for Planning & Design: 8-12 Weeks

It’s key not to rush the process, so make sure to give yourself a realistic timeline. Depending on your needs and goals, 8-12 weeks dedicated strictly for planning and design is a fair estimate.

Consider Goals, then Formalize a Budget

  • Choosing the Right Kitchen Design
  • Pick a kitchen design that not only reflects your lifestyle but also matches the aesthetic of your home. Spend as much time on this step as you need in order to make sure your dream kitchen is just right. When you’re confident in the design you’ve chosen, you’re far less likely to stress out later about whether you made the wrong design choices or not. Keep in mind that if your chosen design is too different from the rest of the house, it’ll miss the mark on being cohesive, and if it’s too excessive in scope it will exceed a realistic budget.

  • Price Options for Your Needs
  • Once you’ve determined the basic design, you’ll want to assess which areas you want to invest in the most. If boosting the resale value of your home is critical to your kitchen remodel, keep in mind that some updates – such as new cabinets, countertops, and even appliances – offer more immediate resale value than other more costly upgrades that may involve moving walls, adjusting electrical work, or relocating plumbing.Speaking of plumbing, if you do need to relocate it, this will add a significant chunk to the cost. If you want to keep costs low, keep this in mind from the beginning so that your remodel works around existing plumbing. Electrical is another important part in kitchen remodel, as the kitchen requires more electricity than anywhere else in the home. If you have an older kitchen, you may want to consider adding more circuits to increase the power supply for all the appliances and add extra outlets for all the chargers and smart devices that have made their way into the kitchen these days. Ask your expert designer how to best incorporate these into your design.

THE CABINETS TO GO ADVANTAGE - Affordable Prices & Kitchen Packages: If you’re in the market to purchase all the major kitchen components together and are looking for a package price, Cabinets To Go offers financing on all of our various kitchen models, no matter which kitchen configuration you decide on.

Create a Design Plan

  1. Create a Custom Kitchen Layout
  2. Get the process off to a good start by creating a floor plan with measurements for your designer to work with. We cannot emphasize enough how important it is to precisely measure all the components you will need for your remodel. If you have a contractor, they will help you make the best choices for your remodel, but if you go DIY, all those decisions will be entirely your responsibility. That’s why it’s so important to know the exact dimensions of your kitchen. Need some help? Request our catalog that contains a handy step-by-step measurement guide.

  3. A Note on Interior Designers
  4. If your budget allows for it, hiring an interior designer puts your design into an executable plan. This is a great time-saver, so you can worry about finding a reputable contractor. If you don’t have a bigger budget, the free design consultations at Cabinets To Go can help you achieve the expert eye of an interior designer without the extra costs. You can also find plenty of inspiration from our gallery of customer remodels and kitchen remodel tips and trends in our blog, The Corner Cabinet.

THE CABINETS TO GO ADVANTAGE - Our Free Consultation & Design Plan: If you’re not sure where to begin when considering your dream kitchen remodel, consider leveraging the Cabinets To Go Design team. We offer free in-store or virtual in-home design consultations, in which one of our design experts analyzes your needs, then works to maximize your budget and provides a transparent consultation that considers all angles of your remodel. Each estimate includes a free design plan, which is the first formal step in your remodel, and offers a scope of total needs, costs, and timeline to completion. Not only that, but the designer who provides your consultation will be the same designer who will work on your project at your local store. Oh, and did we mention that all of this is totally free?

Step 2: Choosing Your Contractor

Time Needed to Choose a Contractor: 2-4 Weeks

It’s time to take your kitchen remodel plan from concept to reality. The next step is to iron out who will actually be doing the work: will it be a contractor, or will it be you?

Are You Hiring a Contractor or Doing the Work Yourself?

  • Pros of Hiring a Contractor
  • The most important reason to hire a contractor is that they are specifically trained to work in kitchens and know their way around the steps to a kitchen remodel. They may even be able to help you with last-minute design or layout changes as the project progresses and the inevitable surprises arise. A reputable contractor is guaranteed to be licensed and insured and will surely be able to work more quickly than you can. If you decide to roll with a contractor, you should take your time vetting just the right person for the job. After all, this is someone you are trusting with one of the most important rooms of your home.

  • Cons of Hiring a Contractor
  • The main con here is naturally labor costs. The average general contractor will charge 15%-30% of the cost of materials for their labor. Watch out for anyone charging less than that, as they are probably not reliable or trustworthy.

  • Pros of DIY
  • If you’re handy or skilled in any aspect of remodeling, you may want to explore the DIY route. The major pro to this is the cost savings, which you can either use to keep your budget lower or to amplify other parts of the remodeling process. But maybe you feel confident in some areas, and not others. In that case, keep in mind that you can hire Cabinets To Go.

THE CABINETS TO GO ADVANTAGE - Cost-Effective Implementation: If you don’t feel comfortable installing the cabinets, countertops, or flooring yourself, but also don’t want to put this high-priority job in the hands of an unknown contractor, Cabinets To Go will not only create the design plan for your kitchen, but we will also install every item you purchase from us in the most efficient manner possible - saving you time and money all across the board.

  • Cons of DIY
  • Unlike hiring a contractor, if you decide to go DIY, it is solely up to you to be responsible for the job. You’ll have to work around your own schedule, whereas if you hire a contractor, the job on is their schedule. If you make a costly mistake, misjudge calculations, or fail to project manage properly, it might be twice as expensive to fix and could add weeks or even months to the projected completion date.

Step 3: Choosing Your Kitchen Materials

Time Needed for Choosing Your Materials: 4-6 Weeks

With a route for implementation settled and a budget in mind, you’re ready for the most important aspect of the entire project: selecting your design details. Using the kitchen design guide you established in the planning and design phase, you should now be able to choose all the elemental essentials you’ll need to build a functional kitchen of your dreams.


Naturally, the cabinets are the first element to be considered in the design portion of the steps to a kitchen remodel. With a multitude of color options – white, brown, and grey among them – as well as the additional options of shaker-style doors for a charmingly timeless look, raised panels to maintain traditional appeal, or the more contemporary flair of modern finishes, you’ll find the color and style that best fits your kitchen aesthetic at Cabinets To Go. As always, our expert designers can help you determine the best cabinet configuration for your kitchen. Their eyes for design and functionality are the secret ingredient in the CTG recipe.


Next to cabinets are the equally vital countertops, which are often chosen by material based on your needs. Granite, for example, adds great resale value to your home, but due to its porousness, might stain or chip, which is not necessarily ideal for a home with children or even pets. Acrylic countertops, on the other hand, are both economical and durable while still being beautiful. They are anti-microbial and non-porous, as well as easily matched to a variety of colors. At Cabinets To Go, you can also explore quartz, butcher block, and Formica options to meet your specific needs.


Flooring holds up every other part of your kitchen – literally! As with other remodeling factors, the flooring that you choose will ultimately derive from two main factors: lifestyle and aesthetic. Lifestyle boils down to how important factors like durability and ease of cleaning are to you, while aesthetic will vary a bit more depending on the style you have chosen for your new kitchen. Classic hardwood in a simple satin finish, like our Gracious Home Premium Hardwood Floors, is a timeless option no matter your design tastes, bringing as much style as it does longevity and durability. If your kitchen remodel requires a waterproof floor, our XRP Waterproof Flooring is an elegant yet hardworking choice. If you’re looking to keep your budget down, our Surplus Flooring is a great way to do so, as we’ve specifically purchased excess stock in order to offer impressive deals on a first-come, first-served basis.


Last, but assuredly not least, your choice in accessories will help complete the look of your newly remodeled kitchen. It’s all about the details: accessories like our kitchen organizers will enhance your cabinet organization solutions by reducing clutter, while knobs and pulls and backsplash will add to the cohesion of the kitchen’s design, pulling in visual elements from the cabinets and countertops while bringing their own aesthetic punch. If you want to keep it simple, at the very least you should tailor your accessories to whichever style best suits your kitchen: transitional, traditional, or modern.

Step 4: Beginning Your Kitchen Renovation

Time Needed for Beginning Your Kitchen Renovation: 16-24 Weeks

With all the specifics of your kitchen remodel steps sorted out and a pathway for implementation settled, you should now have a true price point for your remodel project. Now the fun begins!

Addressing Renovation Challenges

From local housing restrictions to board restrictions (if your home is part of an association) to meeting electrical and plumbing codes, every project will have its own set of regional red tape. For example, if you live in a co-op in Manhattan, you might need formal approval from your building’s board, while if you live in the suburbs of Michigan, you’ll need to make sure that all construction work complies with city codes. You have to consider these steps prior to actually kicking off the project. Is anything worse than starting off your kitchen remodel with a bang, only to get stopped in your tracks due to red tape? Nope.

Consider Your Schedule

The key, as it often is with long-scale projects of any kind, is to establish a realistic timeline and then extend it a little longer to make sure all your tracks are covered. No matter how steadfast you are, little things will come up. If you give yourself more time from the outset, you won’t be set back. This is true whether you hire a contractor, decide to do it all yourself, or just use Cabinets To Go’s installation team to help out with that part of the job. If you give yourself ample time, you’ll never have to rush.

Kick-Off the Project

  • Here’s where the rubber meets the road. With all the details sorted out, now is the time to watch your dream kitchen come to life. Here are some specifics to keep in mind along the way:
  • • Stay in constant communication with the implementation team.
  • • Be transparent about everything.
  • • Expect delays.
  • • Be patient!

THE CABINETS TO GO ADVANTAGE - Streamlined Communication: If you’re employing Cabinets To Go to install your dream kitchen, you can expect constant communication at every turn in the road.

Step 5: Enjoy Your New Dream Kitchen!

TOTAL Estimate of Time Needed for Full Dream Kitchen Remodel: 30-46 Weeks

The work is done, and the stress is over. Now it’s time to invite guests over and enjoy the fruits of your labor. Bring out the fine china or the party dip – or mix it up with a little bit of both! You’ve put in the time updating your kitchen and now you’re ready to show it off. Even if you’re getting ready to sell the house instead of settle in, a new kitchen is worth a little celebration.

Are you ready to start implementing the kitchen remodel steps to create your dream kitchen? Get some ideas from our Before/After Gallery or request a free design consultation to get started below!