How the Pandemic Changed the Kitchen

(BPT) - Forget incorporating the color of the year, savvy consumers are looking to transform outdated kitchens to develop functional spaces driven by their experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic. Here are six ways kitchens are transforming in 2021.

Germaphobes rejoice

The pandemic has increased the need for hands-free faucet features. Among the most interesting novelties in the field of faucet accessories is most certainly the kitchen tap that functions by voice activation. 2021 kitchen sink designs will be angular and more functional — they’ll be streaming with visual appeal. Additionally, anti-microbial countertops and those that are less porous such as quartz are gaining in popularity. All this, while still offering a higher level of good hygiene and style.

Stow it away

Kitchen design is about precise measurements and storage solutions to ensure the kitchen is functional and more efficient for the homeowner. Hunkering down during the pandemic has taught us all to stock up! Nearly 98% of homeowners that remodel their kitchens include some extra internal or external storage options. These will include larger islands, roll-out shelves and/or hidden spice racks to allow for better use of their existing space, while increasing storage capacity. Floor-to-ceiling pantries and walk-ins top the list of add-ons (when space allows) to stock up on necessities. The trend of fewer upper cabinets, replaced by shelves, has increased the demand for additional storage elsewhere in kitchen designs as well.

Time to remodel

Being home has given homeowners the urge to remodel because they are tired of seeing their outdated design day after day. These days homeowners are no longer satisfied with cookie-cutter kitchens; they want something unique that builds character and personality, making a bold statement. However, they are also budget conscious during this uncertain time. The fastest (within a few days), most cost-effective and safest way to change a kitchen’s design is by cabinet refacing — not painting. Kitchen cabinet refacing includes laminating the cabinet boxes with veneers of real wood or maintenance-free laminate applied to the existing cabinet boxes and then replacing all the doors and drawers in the new color and style. Cabinet refacing ends up costing you half the amount you would pay for all new kitchen cabinetry. Use experts like those from Kitchen Magic to ensure your new refaced cabinet boxes are seamless and color-matched to perfection. Finish your transformation with your choice of new hinges, knobs and/or pulls, and molding to complete the look.

Islands are the new table

Kitchen Magic experts are seeing homeowners ditch the kitchen table and instead are opting for an island. Some will enlarge or enhance their existing island to make it more of a focal point. It will still maintain its multi-functional purpose, allowing homeowners to add another stove top, shelving for small appliances, wine fridges or pot drawers. Industry sources estimate 58% of people use the island for dining and 49% use the island for entertaining. Many are flexing their design muscle with a different color island in blues, grays and woodgrains, adding contrast to the popular white wall cabinets and drawers.

More than a floor

Kitchen floor materials will be led by hardwood/engineered wood (50%), with luxury vinyl wood plank (39%) and ceramic/porcelain tile (30%) rounding out the top three. The woodgrain ceramics will be moving up the ladder for flooring that is durable, yet still has the look of hardwood to save on budgets.

The kitchen requires quality surfaces, with an easy-to-clean, resistant and highly durable texture. In addition, it is also worth considering the space available before making your purchase. Some flooring patterns help to expand the space, while busier designs will visually reduce it.

Let there be light

Custom cabinetry with integrated lighting instills both aesthetic appeal and function to a workspace. To that end, a sophisticated lighting concept is essential. Under and interior cabinet lighting offers ambiance and interest — both create a hierarchy of different types of light for an illuminating design. This kitchen trend in 2021 clearly goes for indirect lighting and many light sources, at different levels, that form a harmonious whole. Under-cabinet and task lights fit the bill for better visibility when doing kitchen tasks.

Whether you’re stocking up on supplies, using your island for work and remote schooling, or just tired of looking at outdated cabinetry, now is the time to rethink both design and functionality.

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