4 Features That Date A Kitchen

Remember when I told you about Ikea’s rescue remodel project here and here?  Well they selected a winner and created an amazing kitchen.   And you can read about it here on the Family handyman’s page. 

IKEA_Winner_2013

Speaking of kitchens…

4 Features That Date a Kitchen, Guest post By: Tali Wee of Zillow, Featured Image Source

Throughout the past 10 years, much has changed in the realm of popular kitchen designs.  Most home buyers are willing to pay for remodeled kitchens, while home sellers often make upgrades for the proven returns on their investments. When shopping for homes, a handful of outdated trends can make kitchens appear even older than they might be.  To avoid these negative first impressions, or just to improve the daily experience of cooking at home, consider these six kitchen features that date the spaces.

1. Short Backsplashes

The walls behind kitchen counters near the sink or stove usually have a panel installed, known as a backsplash, to protect the walls from splashing water or food.  In older kitchens, backsplashes are typically 4 inches tall.  Dated backsplashes are generally made of laminate or identical material to the countertop.  In updated kitchens, the short backsplashes are replaced with a backsplash that extend from the countertop to the cabinets.  The most trending looks for these tile walls are white subway tiles or other porcelain, glass or ceramic tiles.  I would stick to a classic looking finish, color and materials, as crazy backspashes can date a space VERY quickly!

beautiful kitchen backsplash

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2. Cluttered Layouts

Fashionable kitchens are all about the open concept, and any obstructions to this layout are out of style (and a bit annoying if you are the cook!).  To update a kitchen, remove the once-popular pot racks that hang over the island and opt for open space and more lighting.  

Decorative range hoods are also an ode to the past.  Replace them with translucent hoods or more discrete options.  Think about an older kitchen; remember the telephone nook where a counter or desk sat with pens and a notepad?  There is no need in modern times to incorporate the telephone space when most home phones are cordless, if not replaced by cellular phones.  Eliminate the nooks to expand the open layout of a spacious kitchen.  Another item eliminated these days is the extra cabinetry on the countertop to disguise kitchen appliances. Countertops are the preferred home for appliances – all except the microwave, which only sits on the countertops of much older kitchen designs.  

The takeaway: Install the microwave, hide the pots, display the KitchenAid and open up the space.

 

open concept kitchen

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3. Stained Wood Cabinets

Stained wood cabinets, especially darker shades, are losing steam as white painted cabinets hold higher appeal for many homeowners and buyers.  Along with the open concept, the light walls, tiles and cabinets reflect light, causing the space to appear brighter and more spacious.  Although colorful appliances are out, colorful cabinets are fashion-forward. Painted cabinets on kitchen islands or accent colored walls of cabinets are trending fast.  

white cabinets and colored cabients white and color cabinets

Cobalt blue cabinets add just the right amount of contrast to this mostly white space.

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4. Tile & Sheet Laminate Countertops

Granite countertops are still a trusted and timeless choice for old and modern kitchens alike.  However, tiled countertops with numerous grouted seams are an age-defining giveaway.  Another countertop that dates a kitchen is the inexpensive sheet laminate found everywhere.  Instead, look for concrete, marble, soapstone, stainless steel, wooden butcher blocks or the trending quartz composite countertops.

butcherblock counters

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I know that opinions vary a lot on this subject, so I would love to hear, what do you think dates a kitchen!  Or what you have done to update your kitchen!

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36 Comments

  1. Would like your opinion on a peninsula that is in my kitchen. I recently bought a house that is going to need updating in the kitchen. The sink is in the peninsula with the dishwasher beside it. It faces the windows in the kitchen. The countertops are laminate and I am definitely going to change. What I am not sure about is the way the peninsula is make. In front of the sink it goes up to make a bar height eating space. Is this outdated?