modern remodel kitchen

10 Signs Its Time: How Often to Remodel Your Kitchen

Understanding how often should you remodel the kitchen can be tricky.

Generally, kitchens need remodeling every 10-15 years.

With new trends in kitchen cabinets and appliances evolving at different rates, homeowners are often left wondering how to time their renovations perfectly.


We’ve all seen homes where the current, outdated kitchen lingered too long, or where timeless classics were removed prematurely, despite having design life left.


Perhaps most frustrating are the piecemeal updates that lack a cohesive look and feel, leaving the space disjointed.

This guide offers you insights into all the tell-tell signs that its time for you to remodel the kitchen.

Fixer Upper 2013 Kitchen Remodel VS. 2021 Kitchen Remodel


When a kitchen is initially installed, it features the latest design trends, bells, and whistles for the time in which it’s being installed.

It doesn’t take long, as year over year, buyers’ tastes and design trends begin to change and shift, and before long, certain aspects of the kitchen are ready for an overhaul.

Today, with HGTV, Instagram, and Pinterest dishing out inspiring new kitchen ideas daily, even the most forward-thinking kitchen design is only going to last 10 years before it starts to show signs of design style aging.

This is the first kitchen design to air in 2013 by Joanna Gaines on HGTV Fixer Upper, featuring dark wood flooring, granite countertops, white subway tile, and white recessed panel cabinetry.

10 year old kitchen remodel

Compare that to the airing of Fixer Upper: Welcome Home On Magnolia Network in 2021, and the design is very different: gold fixtures, light oak flooring, marble countertops, green shaker cabinets, and the ever-popular matte white Café Appliances.

2021 kitchen remodel

Wow, what a difference 10 years can make in design.

Notice the use of shiplap in both designs, illustrating some things change.

1. The time has come

If your kitchen is 10+ years old, stop here; it’s renovation time. Under 10 years? Continue for more remodeling signs.

2. Outdated Appliances Struggling

When your current kitchen appliances can no longer keep pace, or lag in energy efficiency, it’s a surefire sign it’s time for new appliances.

Growing families often outgrow their old kitchen appliances, finding them inadequate for their evolving needs.

The transition from broken appliances to new, energy-efficient kitchen appliances, like larger fridges and fast-cooking double ovens, becomes essential.

3. The kitchen cabinets Exhibiting Wear and Tear

How often should you remodel the kitchen can be best identified by looking at the largest design aspect….the kitchen cabinets.

If your current kitchen cabinets have loosening hinges, fading finishes, and dated cabinet design styles a complete kitchen renovation has come due.

A complete kitchen renovation often starts with replacing these worn cabinets, transforming the space into a more cohesive space.

4. Layout and Lifestyle

A dysfunctional kitchen layout can mandate a kitchen renovation even if design aspects are on trend.

A historical home kitchen layout vastly differs from today’s modern kitchen functionality needs.

If you are unfamiliar with the importance of the overall layout read about the kitchen work triangle.

Consideration must be given to the layout during the design phase or you could end up with a pretty mess.

5. Preparing for Resale

The kitchen is the heart of the home. Real estate agents will tell you a kitchen renovation goes a long way with potential buyers.

Even more important is that kitchen remodel costs are pale in comparison to the added value of your home.

Affordable kitchen renovations can yield a larger return on investment versus a complete renovation.

According to Remodeling Magazine in 2023 a minor kitchen remodel yielded a 83% ROI. A major kitchen renovation yielded 41% ROI.

6. Cosmetic Damage and Structure Destruction

Disappointing as it may be, events like leaks or fires might lead to a complete renovation, even in newer kitchens.

Addressing water damage and electrical work becomes a major project, often involving new flooring or hardwood floors.

This full kitchen remodel, while unexpected, is crucial for safety and integrity, potentially influencing the overall kitchen remodel cost. Ultimately, it’s a necessary kitchen makeover to ensure your home’s safety and value

7. Familial Status Change

Changes in the familiar status, like getting married, having children, or welcoming an aging parent often require a kitchen remodel.

Functionality as we know is important but so is accessibility. Countertops at 34″ are more accessible than 36″ for loved ones in a wheelchair.

Features such as a single bowl large sink allows bathing a baby much easier than a 50/50 sink.

Adding a second dishwasher or a double oven can handle the increased workload of a large family,

These types of home renovations become essential to ensuring the kitchen remains the heart of an evolving home.

8. Affordability

Planning your dream kitchen starts with understanding the best ways to align your vision with realistic costs.

Working with interior designers and general contractors from the outset can clarify the scope of work and help manage expectations.

A step-by-step guide involving a minor remodel or targeted updates, like new countertops can significantly enhance your kitchen without a full renovation’s expense.

Consider the average cost of home improvement projects and prioritize cost-effective solutions that boost your home’s value.

Remember, the right time for an update isn’t just about trends but making informed decisions that balance your desires with practical affordability

9. The Design Feels Stuck in a Past Era

If your kitchen feels like a relic compared to today’s trends, it’s time for an update. Outdated styles can deter potential home buyers especially if other homes in your area boast modern kitchens.

A renovation project incorporating current kitchen design trends, like open concepts with large kitchen islands can revitalize your space.

Targeted updates, based on recent market surveys and new home designs, can significantly enhance your home’s appeal.

10. Out with the Old, In with Your Dream Kitchen

Remodeling for sheer joy is a wise choice, especially if it fits your budget. It’s an investment in home and happiness.

Find yourself frequently envisioning the kitchen of your dreams, it might just be the perfect time to take action.

The best-determining factor on when it’s time is personal preference! It may not be old to everyone else, but if it’s time according to you then trust your instincts.

Dreaming of a new kitchen is a valid and exciting reason to embark on a renovation project.

new kitchen stainless steel appliances

How Often to Remodel Your Kitchen FAQ

Is $10,000 enough for a kitchen remodel?

$10,000 will likely not be enough for a kitchen remodel. Partial kitchen remodel for a small kitchen on average comes in at $5000 to $15,000

How often do kitchen design styles change?

New trends in kitchen design are coming out every year. You can incorporate new trends with countertop accessories, change cabinet hardware, update the backsplash, or make changes to light fixtures,

What is the most expensive part of a kitchen remodel?

Typically kitchen cabinets will be the most expensive part of your kitchen renovation. Kitchen flooring will be a close runner-up, an open-concept kitchen where the kitchen flooring flows into the adjacent dining room and living room spaces.

What are the 3 most expensive items in a kitchen?

The most expensive items in your kitchen design are cabinets, appliances, and countertops. Flooring can also be expensive in kitchens with open-concept layouts.

What is the average lifespan of a kitchen?

In 2024 the average lifespan of a kitchen is 10 years. Kitchen design and trends are changing faster than ever. Even the most thoughtful and forward-thinking kitchen will need a do-over in 10 years.

kitchen floor plan layout on ipad

How often to remodel the kitchen final thoughts

Reflecting on the “how often should you remodel your kitchen” question reveals it’s not just about time—it’s about recognizing the right signs.

Driven by functional needs, design trends, or personal aspirations for a dream kitchen, each indicator serves as a guidepost for action.

As we’ve explored these ten signs, that equipped you with the knowledge to make informed decisions. Ensuring your kitchen remains a vibrant, welcoming space.

Embrace these changes as opportunities to refresh, enhance, and love your home’s culinary hub, today and into the future.

Follow us on Pinterest for inspiration or leave a comment about the moment you knew it was time to remodel.

Let’s keep the creativity and laughs flowing together!

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