There's no denying that the kitchen is the heart of the modern home. Many homeowners are finding that knocknig down walls between kitchens and reception rooms creates a fluid, open-plan living space. The kitchen is no longer just the kitchen - it turns into a living room to watch television, a play room for children, a utility room, a pantry and even a conservatory. This multi-functional room needs serious planning to make sure you get it *just* right. Step in an architect.
Architects are clever, often underestimated craftsman. They plan, design and in many cases supervise constructions of anything from a small extension to multi-storey buildings. But here's why they're SO important for redesigning a kitchen:
1. Creating a flow within your house
We don't mean to sound all hippy and "far out", but you need your home to 'flow' well. By this, we mean you don't want to be turning awkward corners to get into your beautiful new kitchen, do you? No! You want to easily glide into your new kitchen, not work yor way around an existing wall. Architects will meticuously plan around your current space, with an aim to turn it into something you could have only dreamed of.
2. Planning the behind-the-scenes essentials
Lights? Essential. Electricity? Essential. Water? Yep, you guessed it. And that's just to name a few essential items. Architects KNOW what your kitchen needs to run and they'll work out the best places for these to be. It's a no-brainer.
3. Knock-knock-knockin' down walls
Arguably what they're best at - architects can plan around knocking down walls. It's likely that you'll want to combine the kitchen with an existing room, meaning you'll have to get the sledgehammer out. An architect will let you know if it's possible or not, how it'll work, if you'll need a supporting joist, and what will look aesthetically pleasing. All this whilst staying in-keeping with the rest of your home.
4. All the other stuff you probably didn't think of
What soil is your house laid on? Will this affect the build? What height does your new flooring need to be? Will you have underfloor heating? If not, what about radiators? It's a kitchen, you'll need an extractor fan. There are so many things you won't initially think of when re-designing a kitchen.
5. Designing your kitchen from cabinets to sinks
Funnily enough, experienced architects will have a great eye for detail. They'll know what will and what won't work in your new kitchen in terms of layout and planning. Architects are great a problem-solving and suggesting where applicances and plugs should go. If this simple, yet important, aspect of your new kitchen isn't planned to perfection, you'll probably regret it forever. No pressure.
6. A local architect's significance
Architects who work within the local area will have a great deal of knowledge of the surrounding areas. They'll also have probably worked on similar houses to yours, meaning they know what will and won't be approved by the local council. This will make the whole process run a lot faster, as before ANYTHING can happen, you'll more than likely need planning permission.
And that's just scratching the surface. Architects are great for SO many things that it'd be foolish to attempt to list them all. So we've just covered the main points for you.
The earlier you start planning, the easier the process will be, so get in touch with local Wimbledon architect Keith Malone of Malone Architecture to get the ball rolling. Keith has years of experience, from new builds to renovating listed houses, he knows the deal.
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