Kitchen Storage a ‘Priority’ in Renovations

by Autumn McGarr

The decision to remodel is increasingly being triggered by old kitchens that deteriorate or cease functioning (30%), currently the third most common reason for kitchen renovations, up from the previous year, and currently at the highest level seen in Houzz’s six-year history of tracking kitchen project motivators. Finally having the economic means remains the top motivator to renovate, up 3% from the previous year. Source: Houzz Inc., 2021 Kitchen Trends Survey

PALO ALTO, CA — Kitchen storage is a key priority that’s leading to continued growth in cabinet replacement and modification, according to a recent survey conducted by Houzz, Inc., the Palo Alto, CA-based online platform for home renovation and design.

According to Houzz’s “2021 U.S. Kitchen Trends Study,” an online survey conducted in mid-2020, nearly all (94%) of the kitchen renovations conducted by survey participants included some work on cabinets, with most (64%) replacing all cabinets.

Of the one-third of homeowners who opt for partial cabinet upgrades, more than a quarter add at least some cabinets to their newly renovated kitchen, nearly four times as many as the previous year, said Houzz. The percentage of homeowners adding or upgrading a pantry space also grew, with nearly half of homeowners upgrading pantry cabinets and one in eight adding a walk-in pantry, both up from the previous year.

“Storage has really come into focus as people have spent more time at home during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Liza Hausman, Houzz v.p./industry marketing. “We’re seeing an increase in the amount of cabinetry added in renovations, and more homeowners are reaching out to professionals for help making their kitchens work better, most often within the same layout and square footage.”

Houzz’s survey, whose results were released in January, was conducted online among more than 2,000 homeowners using Houzz who are in the midst of, are planning or recently completed a kitchen renovation, according to the company.

Among other key survey findings:

  • Cabinetry in renovated kitchens is often equipped with built-in specialty organizers, drawers or trays. The most popular organizers are for cookie sheets and spices (48% and 39%, respectively), while the most common specialty drawers are pullout waste or recycling drawers (60%). More than one-third of kitchen renovations include specialty shelving trays, such as revolving trays, pullout or swing-out trays, making hard-to-reach spaces more accessible.
  • The number of renovating homeowners creating an open-concept floor plan by opening their kitchen to other interior spaces has dropped dramatically since 2019 (43% in 2021 versus 53% in 2019), although one in five homeowners open the kitchen up to outdoor space.
  • Nearly two-thirds of renovated kitchens feature an island and more than half of those islands feature a new appliance, up 3% from the previous year. Among those islands, more than a third include a dishwasher and/or microwave.
  • Renovated kitchens continue to feature neutral tones of gray, white and beige on wall surfaces. That said, some homeowners are opting for more colorful looks, including multi-colored backsplashes, black stainless appliances and blue walls.
  • High-tech features appear in more than half of upgraded faucets and nearly one-third of upgraded appliances. Popularity for appliances with wireless controls has grown by 5% since last year. ▪

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