modern kitchen cedar hardwood floors and white cabinets, white countertop with wooden stools, hanging lights overhead, stairs in background

Kitchen renovations are exciting but can quickly become overwhelming if you’re not careful. Whether you’re a DIY enthusiast or planning to hire professionals, avoiding common mistakes can save you both time, money, and a multitude of headaches. This blog will walk you through the top 3 mistakes people tend to make during their kitchen renovation and how you can steer clear of them.

First, an Example: The “It’s Too Big” Kitchen Island

Here’s an example case study of a homeowner who made the mistake of installing a kitchen island that was just too large.

modern kitchen cedar hardwood floors and white cabinets, white countertop with wooden stools, hanging lights overhead, stairs in background

The Homeowner’s Story:
Sarah was excited to renovate her outdated kitchen and had always dreamed of installing a large kitchen island. She envisioned it as a multifunctional space where she could cook, her kids could do homework, and guests could gather around during parties. After some basic measurements and without consulting a professional, she went ahead and had a custom island built.

The Mistake:
Once installed, Sarah realized the island was too large for the available space. It obstructed the natural flow of the kitchen and made accessing the fridge, stove, and sink cumbersome. The “kitchen triangle” was disrupted, making cooking and other tasks inefficient.

Due to the size and custom nature of the island, it couldn’t be returned. Sarah had to invest in additional renovations to make the kitchen functional again. This involved reducing the size of the island and shifting electrical and plumbing fixtures, which led to extra costs and extended timelines.

The Lesson:
Had Sarah consulted with design professionals and maybe used 3D modelling software to visualize the space, she could have avoided this costly and time-consuming decision to build such a large kitchen island built without understanding the right dimensions and functionality.

This example perfectly illustrates Mistake #2: Overlooking Functionality and Flow, mentioned in this blog. Not only should your kitchen be a visually appealing space, but it should also be a functional one.

Learn about the 3 common mistakes made by homeowners to avoid during a kitchen renovation below! 

Mistake 1: Not Setting a Realistic Budget for your Kitchen Renovation

The Pitfall

One of the biggest mistakes people make is not setting a realistic budget before diving into the renovation process. Homeowners either underestimate the cost or, conversely, overspend on unnecessary items.

The Solution

Plan your budget meticulously, taking into account everything from materials and labor to appliances and contingencies. Don’t forget to factor in hidden costs such as electrical work, plumbing, and waste removal. Make a detailed list, consult experts, and keep a buffer for unexpected expenses.

Pro Tip: Using budget planning software or apps can help you keep track of expenses, so you know exactly where your money is going.

Mistake #2: Overlooking Functionality and Flow

The Pitfall

The aesthetic appeal of a newly renovated kitchen can overshadow its functionality. A design that looks good but isn’t practical can make everyday tasks wooden countertop with white cupboards, sink to right, stove to left

The Solution

Think about the kitchen’s workflow, often referred to as the “kitchen triangle” — the arrangement between the stove, refrigerator, and sink. These areas should be easily accessible but not too close to each other. Use high-quality, durable materials that can withstand daily wear and tear.

Pro Tip: 3D modeling software can help you visualize the space before committing to a design.

Mistake 3: DIY’ing a Kitchen Renovation When You Shouldn’t

The Pitfall

The DIY approach can be great for small projects like painting walls or installing a new backsplash. However, more complex tasks such as electrical wiring, plumbing, or installing countertops may require expert intervention. (read “What Could Go Wrong in a Home Renovation?“)

hardwood floor kitchen renovation DIY


The Solution

Know your limits. If a task requires specialized skills, it’s safer and more cost-effective in the long run to hire professionals. Make sure to vet contractors carefully, checking their credentials and past work, before hiring.

Pro Tip: Take a look at a contractors website, specialties and reputation before making a choice if you decide to hire help.


A kitchen renovation is a significant investment, and avoiding these common mistakes can help ensure that your project is both beautiful and functional. Remember, a well-thought-out budget, attention to functionality, and knowing when to call in the experts can make all the difference.

Further Reading

Did you find this blog useful? Let us know by sending us a message and don’t forget to share it with someone who’s planning their kitchen renovation!