How long does it take to remodel a kitchen? The answer depends on the scope of your project. Upgrading the cabinets, countertops, or fixtures might take only a couple of days. But if you’re completely renovating your kitchen, you’re in for a much more involved process.
A complete kitchen remodel, also known as a gut renovation, involves demolishing the existing kitchen down to its studs, plumbing, and wiring. From there, you rebuild the entire space, including new plumbing and wiring, walls, floors, cabinets, countertops, and fixtures.
Kitchen renovations, both small and large, typically involve at least 12 different stages, each with its own set of factors that contribute to the project’s overall timeline. Most custom kitchen renovations in NYC can be categorized into three main phases:
1. Design, Selection, and Procurement
The design, selection, and procurement stages make up the first few steps to remodeling a kitchen. During this phase, the designer creates a 3D rendering of your kitchen that includes every detail, such as the layout, cabinetry, fixtures, appliances, lighting, and more. The selection phase involves identifying the design aesthetics of the space and offering you several options for finishes, fixtures, cabinetry, and accessories.
Once you’ve selected the components of your new custom kitchen, the designer will procure all the finishes before starting the demolition and build phases. Typically, design, selection, and procurement can take up to 30 days, though that depends largely on how quickly you decide on your new fixtures and finishes. If you live in a co-op or condo, then board approval and permitting will also affect the timeline for this phase.
2. Protection and Demolition
The next pre-build phase includes protection and demolition. This includes implementing protections around the site to contain dust, debris, and other materials for optimal safety. Zip walls will seal the demolition area. Sticky pads on the floors around the space will make sure workers don’t carry dust or debris on their shoes when they walk out. In condos and co-ops, hallways, elevators, stairs, and other common areas must also be protected.
Once protections are in place, the builders will start demolishing your old kitchen to make way for your new custom one. They’ll remove the cabinets, countertops, floors, walls, and plumbing, making sure to sweep up dust and debris at the end of each day. This process usually takes two to four days depending on the size and layout of the space, as well as whether your kitchen is in a private home or a multi-unit building.
3. Building and Finishing
The final phase of a kitchen renovation is building, which includes most of the action steps. Builders will start with framing and end with testing everything and cleaning up. In between, they’ll put in new electrical and plumbing work, and then install all the new walls, floors, cabinets, countertops, accessories, and fixtures that you’ve selected.
The location of your kitchen — aka, whether it’s in a private home or an apartment building — matters most during the build phase of your remodel. Renovations inside a building take longer due to the considerations mentioned above, along with limited work hours, freight elevator restrictions, and any additional work imposed by the board. Typically, though, the process takes three to six weeks once it’s underway.
This outline is what you can expect when working with a turnkey design, selection, and build firm such as Gallery Kitchen & Bath. Taking the labor-only approach of hiring just a contractor can significantly extend the timeline, even for small kitchen renovations. Labor contractors are not responsible for procuring finishes, so they’re more likely to run into incorrect measurements from outside vendors, longer lead times, miscommunication, and poor logistics coordination.
If you’ve ever completed a renovation using a labor-only contractor, then you might consider the above timeline highly optimistic. However, working with a firm that takes care of all the details for you guarantees that those delays won’t impact your new renovation’s timeline or success. Reach out to us today to learn more about how Gallery Kitchen & Bath can help you build the kitchen of your dreams.