The Ultimate Kitchen Remodel Planning Guide

A kitchen remodeling can be an intimidating project to undergo, but with a focused, meticulous approach, it can be simplified into a step-by-step process. We at Monarch Design & Remodeling have performed such processes for clients seeking expert custom kitchen design, basement renovation, interior decorating, and much more.

Throughout Vienna, VA and Northern Virginia, Monarch’s head designer, Gina Simpson, along with our team of professional remodelers, have spent over twenty years updating countless homes. Below, we detail every aspect of planning a kitchen remodel for your home:

The Budget

The first thing you should have in order is the budget for your kitchen remodel. It will help you limit your options and minimize the number of decisions you’ll have to make throughout the project. Research estimated costs for everything involved in the remodel, such as appliances, cabinetry, flooring, construction and more.

What You Want vs. What You Need

Consider each element’s importance to your overall vision. Is the focus of your remodel to make your kitchen more functional or to make it look more appealing? The point is to think about what you need and want from this remodel, so that you have a clear understanding of your vision, and so that it can fit within your budget.

Watch Out for Sudden Costs

Furthermore, when settling on an initial budget, you should also consider potential costs and fees that will likely come up during the project. Unforeseen expenses always occur one way or another, so remember to fit at least ten to twenty percent on top of your budget, along with the estimated total cost of the project. That will provide an adequate buffer that ensures you will cover any sudden costs you will need to pay for.

Review Potential Contractors

While portions of the total remodeling cost can be reduced by performing certain tasks yourself, some parts of the project will require hiring contractors, especially if you are undergoing a more expansive renovation. Therefore, we suggest that you research contractors that are specialized in cost-effective custom kitchen design.

Learn about the quality and reputation of their business. Check their website for client testimonials and portfolios of past projects, as well as ratings on reliable service review sites. Find their contact information and learn how you can get a quote for their services.

Do this with several companies so that you have multiple options to compare. After that, not only will you have found a decent contractor, you will also have an accurate survey of the project’s overall costs. Then, with all that legwork done, you can spend time on the design.

The Design

While budgeting is the practical and logical part of the planning process, developing the design is more creative and fluid. You can start putting it together anytime, whether it is before or after you start preparing the budget to all throughout the project itself.

However, the best thing is knowing precisely what you want in your custom kitchen design sooner rather than later. Here are the main elements you should consider when producing your design:


The basis of your future kitchen’s design is the overall layout that it is going to have. The layout involves the amount of space your entire kitchen will take up, as well as the positions of important appliances like your sink, stove, and refrigerator. The changes you make should be based on how you want it to be used.

For example, consider the number of people that are typically in the kitchen at one time. If there are more than one or two, perhaps the layout should include extra space for everyone to work and move around in.


Along with the layout, consider the special features you want in your kitchen. They are the major details that help set up your kitchen’s overall style. Kitchen features include an island for extra counter-space and storage, customized cabinets and shelves, or stainless steel restaurant-grade appliances.

Moreover, remember your budget, since certain features can be expensive to purchase or build, and can easily overextend your budget if you’re not careful.


Your kitchen’s style is also framed by the types of materials that go into its construction. It does this through the multitude of colors and textures specific to each material. Most homeowners elect to match the color of their cabinets and countertops, but select different materials for each.

For example, dark granite countertops can go with white-painted medium density fiberboard, creating a contrast found in many of the best modern kitchen designs.

Personalize Your Custom Kitchen Design in Vienna, VA!

The guide above can help you formulate and plan your next kitchen remodeling, and it may allow you to perform some of its tasks yourself. However, making extensive changes to your home’s interior requires the skill and experience of a professional contractor.

At Monarch Design & Remodeling, we have spent over twenty years providing design and renovation services, including individualized custom kitchen design and remodeling, refreshing bathroom renovations, and more. Our customers through the Vienna, VA area have enjoyed our collaborative process, as well as our use of quality material and construction methods.

Contact us at (703) 789-3288 to learn how we can help you create the custom-made kitchen of your dreams.