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Remodeling your kitchen is the most BEAUTIFUL investment. Food is love and as much as we all love to eat, we love making good financial decisions even more! A kitchen remodel, whether big or small can be a costly expense and one that should be considered carefully and thoughtfully.

Here in central New Jersey, kitchens and bathrooms are at the top of the list in terms of return on investment. With our proximity to New York City and the beautiful Jersey Shore, we are in a fairly consistent housing market where the demand for homes is high. Putting money into in a new kitchen is a sure-fire bet, often returning 85- 100 percent of the initial investment. According to Steve Niedzielski, managing partner and lead design director at Heart of the Home Kitchens in Edison,, “…It’s important to look at how your kitchen is utilized in order to make it a great investment...”

As a homeowner, you want your new kitchen to reflect the value of your home and not overshadow it. In other words, you wouldn’t put a $50,000 custom kitchen in a home that is worth $250,000 on the real estate market. According to Steve, generally speaking you can spend 10% of your home’s market value and get a fair return on your kitchen investment. Obviously, there are many other factors that determine a home’s value. Speaking to a realtor and/or doing some research online can help you determine your home’s value and will aid in budgeting your beautiful new kitchen.

Another factor to consider is how your new kitchen will be used. Your priorities and how you live is always a great investment. If serious cooking is important, high end appliances are a smart investment. Splurging on a professional range along with a sub zero refrigerator can be easily justified. If you enjoy entertaining in your home like my husband and I do, taking down walls to open up your entertaining space, along with amenities such as warming drawers, beverage refrigerators and a large island could be a necessary investment for you. As an entertainer, you may also opt for a butlers’ pantry, second dishwasher, higher end counters and cabinetry. Who doesn’t want to entertain the neighbors in style? A busy family will tend to need a lot of storage for organization. A built-in pantry, lots of cabinet space and a mud room off the kitchen can make life so much easier. Having a place for everything along with easy accessibility can aid in the morning hustle bustle of breakfast, school lunches and the daily morning stress of getting out to work and school. These are all important investments in your day to day living as a busy family.

At the end of the day, a gorgeous new kitchen whatever your lifestyle, can make your life easier and happier and that is a BEAUTIFUL investment!

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