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Accurately estimating the cost of your kitchen remodel - The Fucking Bluebird of Goddamn Happiness [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Zoethe

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Accurately estimating the cost of your kitchen remodel [May. 16th, 2011|12:13 pm]
Zoethe
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The biggest problem with remodeling is making sure you have enough money to pay for your contractor's boat and all the subcontractors' yacht club memberships. Because the last thing you want to do is disappoint them - this is your kitchen we're talking about, and once you've stopped bleeding money into that sinkhole, your binding spell is broken and the crew will return to the demon depths from whence you summoned them.

So it's important to identify how much money is involved right from the beginning. Fortunately, I've developed a handy guide to making that determination. All that's required is a tape measure, paper and pencil, and a stop watch.

Step One: Measure your kitchen's length and width, and multiply these numbers to determine square footage. With that number at hand, start the stopwatch. Multiply the square footage by 1000, and add a dollar sign.

When you regain consciousness, stop the stopwatch and determine how many minutes you were out. Multiply this number by 1500, and add to the above figure.

Step Two: Determine the number of cabinets that will be in your kitchen. Multiply the number of wall cabinets by $500. Multiply the number of base cabinets by $750. Add these numbers to the above figure. Now count the number of stiff drinks it takes to get your hands to stop shaking, multiply that by 1000, and add to the above number.

Step Three: For every appliance you will be replacing, multiply by 2000. For every child whose college education you will no longer be supplementing, multiply by $3000. Add.

Step Four: Lie down on your bed and start the stopwatch. Multiply the number of minutes that it takes for your heart to return to a normal rate by $400. Add.

Step Five: Review the final number. Realize that it's almost as much as you paid for the house. Show it to your significant other or a close personal friend. Count the number of times they exclaim that this number is too high, ridiculous, impossible, etc. Multiply that total by $1000. Add.

Step Six: Just to be certain that you don't come up short, double the final result. Consider vacations in foreign countries as an alternative to your remodeling plans.

Breathe into a bag until you're no longer hyperventilated, then phone your contractor to make the appointment. Quickly estimate the date of completion by taking the date you want it done and adding 4 years.
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[User Picture]From: dana3
2011-05-16 04:20 pm (UTC)
... sounds about right, which explains why we still have the same kitchen 14 yrs later (with probably 30 yr old vinyl flooring). Watching your adventures and vicariously playing along at home, waiting til we've saved enough to even think about it ... :Dana
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-16 04:29 pm (UTC)
It's an adventure, that's for certain!
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[User Picture]From: bart_calendar
2011-05-16 04:22 pm (UTC)
In France we have a slightly different system.

Step One: Call up a licensed, unionized contractor and ask them how much it will cost and how much time it will take.

Step Two: Have a heart attack when they tell you it will cost more than you home could possibly be worth and that it will take them six to nine months to accomplish after you've gotten the appropriate permits to get it done.

Step Three: Realize that it will take you at least a year to get the permits.

Step Four: Ask non native French speakers if they know anyone who can get the job done.

Step Five: Be referred to someone really, really nice and cool living in the Arab ghetto who is incredibly skilled but been constantly denied union membership and a license.

Contact them. Get told it will take a week to get done and cost roughly 1/10th of what the official contractor told you.

Step Six: Job is done.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-16 04:31 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I have heard that this is often the case....
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[User Picture]From: wdomburg
2011-05-16 04:28 pm (UTC)
I was lucky. I had a friend and his father do my kitchen. About six grand and a few weeks later it was done, including installing the new breaker box to feed six new circuits.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-16 04:32 pm (UTC)
It would be lovely to have that option!
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[User Picture]From: ba1126
2011-05-16 04:35 pm (UTC)
We've been doing ours piecemeal, now that we've finished putting kids through college. We bought a new stove and a handy friend helped us install it for a reasonable cost. He also removed an ancient ugly wall oven, and built a frame for us to install ready made sliding 'basket' drawers. We finally got our kitchen tile floor replaced. It had been damaged in the 70's by an over- enthusiastic teen mopping with too much water. A local small contractor ( no job too small) put in a wood floor in two days for a reasonable price.
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[User Picture]From: halfmoon_mollie
2011-05-16 04:36 pm (UTC)
Kitchens and bathrooms. The two most expensive rooms in the house to have remodeled. This is...funny. And way close to accurate - from someone who rents, but grew up in a house where something was ALWAYS being done.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-16 04:57 pm (UTC)
I wrote it to be funny, but the funniest things are the ones that are almost true.
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[User Picture]From: gythiawulfie
2011-05-16 04:46 pm (UTC)

Sounds about right...

The rule of 'thumb' as I was told..

Get the quote add 50% extra for cost and 40% more for time.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-17 01:36 pm (UTC)

Re: Sounds about right...

Yup. But not nearly as funny.
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[User Picture]From: cathubodva
2011-05-16 05:25 pm (UTC)
This made me laugh - my dad's a contractor and the only boat he owns is one he bartered some work for. =D
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-16 05:33 pm (UTC)
Oh, I know it's a massive exaggeration, but I sometimes have to go for the laughs.
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[User Picture]From: kathrynrose
2011-05-16 06:05 pm (UTC)
So. True!
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-16 06:10 pm (UTC)
You were one of the people I was sure would appreciate it!
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[User Picture]From: hooloovooo
2011-05-16 06:28 pm (UTC)
If only this wasn't so incredibly accurate.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-16 06:45 pm (UTC)
I know the pain you are feeling right now, my dear. Hang in there.
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[User Picture]From: irishgalinabq
2011-05-16 07:27 pm (UTC)
We have an Ikea kitchen and it is very nice indeed. So many drawers and cubbys and they all slide in and out for very easy access. Also have glass-door pretty lighted cabinets to show off nice dishes. I know some people are Ikea averse but you can certainly get a lot for your $$'s in the kitchen dept and really use all your space well.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-16 09:27 pm (UTC)
If we didn't have major structural changes happening, I might have considered it. And thanks to my sister working for a cabinet company we are getting a very good deal, too.
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[User Picture]From: the_xtina
2011-05-16 07:30 pm (UTC)
May I metaquote this?
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-16 09:27 pm (UTC)
Sure! Unless something is friendlocked, assume that you may!
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[User Picture]From: roniliquidity
2011-05-16 07:44 pm (UTC)
I fear this. I will likely inherit my grandmother's house as the only child or grandchild living in the state and it will need some serious remodeling. For instance, the kitchen was done in '72. It has a carpet.
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[User Picture]From: mysteri
2011-05-16 08:48 pm (UTC)
Ugh! Carpet in the kitchen is such a bad idea. The only worse idea I have found was when we lived in England. The BATHROOM had carpet. I had 4 kids under 7 having baths in there. It did not end well.
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[User Picture]From: laplor
2011-05-16 08:52 pm (UTC)
It's about the same process for a bathroom renovation, only you can skip step six.

We did a bathroom in our previous house with tiled floor, new wall boards, tiled walls, new fixtures. Doing the work 100% ourselves, it still cost $5K six years ago. We're planning on at least $15k when we do our kitchen.

Our first house and lot cost $40k. Though we did get all the labour for free since it was built by a high school.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-16 09:31 pm (UTC)
It's awesome when you are handy....
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[User Picture]From: alicephilippa
2011-05-16 10:18 pm (UTC)
*waves*

Followed this through from metaquotes.

Funniest thing I've read for a while and has more than a grian of truth in it. :D
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-17 12:05 am (UTC)
We've got a good contractor now and are on top of the budget situation, But there were more than a few shocks to the ol' system along the way!
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[User Picture]From: miintikwa
2011-05-17 01:12 am (UTC)
This is yet another reason I'm really grateful that my husband's father was a contractor for a while. He can do just about anything, thanks to his dad's teaching.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-17 01:53 am (UTC)
Oh, if only!
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