Kitchens are among the most vital parts of our homes. No longer just for cooking, today’s kitchens act as socialization hubs, home offices, craft rooms, bill-pay centers and more. In fact, despite a decline in home size (by 2015, the average new home size is expected to be 2,150 square feet, down from a peak of 2,500 in 2007), the size of the average kitchen is actually increasing as Americans choose to allocate more and more floor space to kitchens that do double-, triple-, even quadruple-duty.
If you want your kitchen to serve you better, start by thinking about what activities you want to accommodate: Do you need a workspace? A garden-supply table? A dedicated baking area?
By defining the activities you want to engage in most and planning accordingly, you are sure to design a kitchen that works for you. Is it a cooking room, an eating room or a homework room? Today’s kitchen has truly become the proverbial “heart of the home” as the line between the kitchen and adjoining living areas blurs—in new construction, open floor plans that incorporate meal preparation, eating and work space, and an entertainment area has become the norm. Achieving a multifunctional kitchen by creating a more open floor plan is also the top priority in many remodels. The benefits of this approach are multifold and include reduced material use, better space utilization, and daylighting, as well as a more accessible space that can be adapted to a wide variety of occupants.