When it’s time to have children, many prospective parents find themselves looking at their homes with new eyes. Do they need to convert a study to a nursery? Where will the children play? And how can they make the kitchen work for their needs, as well as their children’s?
“A kitchen is not just a place for cooking and eating, it’s also a sociable space for gathering, doing homework and simply spending time together as a family,” notes Houzz.
If you are considering a kitchen remodel with your growing family in mind, Houzz offers these tips:
Consider adding seating at an island: Obviously, seating allows family members to eat at the island. But it also provides a place for kids to do their homework and for adults to “relax with a glass of wine once the kids have gone to bed,” notes Houzz. Add an induction cooktop to the island and guests can gather while the host cooks and children can “watch and learn as parents cook.”
Buy safe appliances: With children, safety becomes paramount. Induction ranges are preferable for families because the surface stays cool while cooking and there are no flames, as with gas stoves. Ovens installed at eye level are also advised so that young children can’t reach them.
Don’t skimp on conveniences: Choosing appliances with conveniences can help “ease the pressures of family life,” notes Houzz. For example, a hot water dispenser and fast-cook oven can save much-needed time. A dishwasher with a sanitizer eliminates the need for a separate baby bottle sterilizer, and faucets that turn off and on by just by touching the metal with your wrist are a godsend when you’re holding a baby—or anything else, for that matter.
Buy easy-to-maintain surfaces: Think of the clean-up required when choosing countertops. Fingerprints are less visible on matte surfaces, textured stone or wood. Corian and quartz are stain-resistant and durable. Silestone is antibacterial, making it a good choice for parents of young children.
Allow for ample storage: Families accumulate stuff. Be sure you have storage for things like bottles, baby food, bibs. And plan for out-of-the-way storage of dangerous items (knives) and breakables (glassware, dishes).
Allow for changing needs. As your family grows, you’ll accumulate more garbage; be sure your plan includes enough accessible bin space, including containers for recyclable materials. Also, choose a refrigerator and oven large enough for a family of four and a table that can accommodate your children’s friends, as well as family.