Three months ago, we had some pipes leak in our kitchen that caused some damage to the flooring and the cabinets and resulted in us basically getting a brand new kitchen. We contacted State Farm to see about getting any coverage, and thankfully, they agreed to help cover some of the damage. So, we set about getting a contractor in to look at the damage and give us an estimate. We ended up using one that works directly with State Farm, a decision that may have caused us more strife that we were hoping to avoid, but after several delays, screw-ups, and mis-communication among the different workers, we finally have our new kitchen (and living room).
The photo above shows what the kitchen used to look like, though the island had already been removed. It wasn’t a bad kitchen. In fact, it was originally one of the reasons we liked this house. There were a few things we had wanted to change eventually. The pantry on the left blocked one of the electric outlets and took away some valuable counter space. Mostly, though, we were getting sick of the color scheme. The green and yellow can be bright and cheery, but it was also getting dirty. It was left over from the previous owner, and we wanted something that was ours. Since the kitchen had to be torn apart, we took this time to re-paint both the kitchen and living room, which is really just one big room.
When the contractors first came out, we were under the impression that they would be able to get everything out and replaced before school started. However, we waited about 3 weeks before they even came out and started removing the cabinets and wet flooring. In this time, the smell of mold became more and more intense to the point where we had to call them to come out and remove the damaged pieces. They set up a containment tent with their portable air filtration unit to dry out the place and get rid of the mold. That lasted for several days, during which we were slowly moving furniture out of the living room since the entire floor would eventually have to be replaced. We had a plumber come in and replace all of the steel pipe with plastic tubing. After that, we found that we could drink the tap water right from the sink without any extra filtration. Turns out it was the pipes in the house that were causing us to have rusty water. No wonder the pipes burst.
The contractors finally came and removed the rest of the floor, but neglected to order the new flooring that we wanted. Instead, they kept bringing us samples that were darker than we desired. Finally, we went to Home Depot, chose the flooring and gave them no choice but to order it. The Vermont Maple Pergo® XP looks great, by the way.
The flooring wasn’t the only hang-up. We wanted to order some nice assemble-yourself cabinets that were cheaper than the custom cabinetry at any of the building supply stores have, but better than the pre-assembled cabinets in stock. They came in to measure the walls and gave us a layout using the in-stock cabinets. Apparently, they measured incorrectly the first time and we had to wait longer for the designs to come in. At that point, we begrudgingly went with the cheap in-stock cabinets. They were to paint them white. When they came and installed them, they were barely painted. We could see the wood grain through the paint, which was unacceptable. We were ready to get rid of these guys and call a new contractor to finish the job when they came and re-painted everything.
So, what we thought would be a two to three week job ended up taking three months. Last week, they came in and made all the final touches which left us with the task of finishing up any last bit of painting, which we did this weekend. We have one wall in the back bedroom to finish painting, but as that room is mostly storage at the moment, it’s not on the immediate priority list. We still have some little work to do such as painting the island white and installing handles on the cabinets. We now have more counter space, more cabinet space, a bigger and deeper sink with a working spray hose, a dishwasher, a fan over the stove, and a nice bright new color scheme. I present to you the new kitchen.