June 10, 2019

Are you considering renovating your old kitchen? Go green! Eco-chic, energy-efficient kitchen designs are all the rage as homeowners increasingly learn the importance of a more sustainable lifestyle. Energy-saving upgrades help save the planet and can also greatly increase the value of your home. They even help you save money on your utility bill. Who doesn't love that? 

Considering how much time you spend in the kitchen, modernizing this space in your home is always worth it. Here are five ways to do just that.

1. Buy smart kitchen appliances

Not only do old kitchen appliances detract from your kitchen’s overall décor and vibe, they also require more energy to operate. Give your space a fresh, new look and save money when you invest in smart, energy-efficient kitchen appliances. Upgrading large-scale appliances like your dishwasher and fridge can really save on electricity and water. Investing in elements like ventilation fans, ceiling fans, and kitchen hoods are also a great idea as they support proper ventilation. More economically friendly than aesthetically vital, replacing your sink’s plumbing fixtures and installing low-flow faucets can help reduce your water usage by 30 to 50 percent. With all that savings, you can continue to upgrade your kitchen to look like it was out of a magazine!

2. Redo the cabinets

One of the easiest, most affordable, and all-around best ways to modernize your kitchen space is to refurbish or repaint your cabinets, especially if they are dated. While white cabinetry can give a sleek and clean look, pops of color add personality. Neutral, natural shades are currently in vogue. Consider natural wood or reclaimed lumber to be green. For an ultra-modern look, paint half the cabinets; for example, leave the upper cabinets white or natural wood and paint the bottom cabinets a sleek black. Whatever you choose, it's important to paint your cabinets with low VOC paint to minimize your impact on air quality within your home.

3. Modernize your countertops

Countertops are one of the most noticeable style elements in your kitchen; not to mention, they take up a lot of space. While the possibilities are endless, there are many eco-friendly materials you can choose for your update. The definition of green means many things to different people. How it is made, the origin of the materials, how it is fabricated, fairness of wages, effects on environment, carbon footprint, useful life, afterlife, etc. Some eco-friendly materials are recycled paper or glass, quartz, stainless steel, and stained concrete. There’s an option for every budget and style preference. Regardless of the material, choosing a calm color will open up your kitchen. If it is in your budget, consider adding a backsplash for a nice accent.

4. Have open shelving

Open shelving is a wonderful addition to virtually any kitchen. Hello, Chip and Joanne! This can be done by simply removing the doors of your cabinets or by removing the cabinets entirely and replacing them with shelving. Not only does this allow for a more modern look, it inspires you to keep your storage neat and clean and minimizes the risk of a pest infestation in your home. You can also introduce more color and style by adding a dash of greenery in the form of potted plants, special dishware, or decorative items to your open shelving. The addition of plants also enhances the air quality of your home.

5. Change your flooring

Flooring is one of the most prominent parts of your entire kitchen space, yet easily overlooked If you want to truly modernize your surroundings, convert old vinyl flooring to a classic yet fashion-forward material like tile, wood, or stone. For more eco-friendlier flooring, you may want to consider bamboo. In comparison to hardwood trees, bamboo grows much faster, making it a more sustainable alternative to wood flooring. Alternately, if you already have wood floors and they’re not in the best shape, you can paint or professionally refinish them. You’ll likely be surprised at how bright, spacious, and airy this will make your kitchen feel.

 

Whatever route you take to modernize your kitchen, it's essential to remember to dispose of your leftover and previous materials responsibly. Donate or sell any appliances that are still in working order, all salvageable material can go to organizations like Habitat for Humanity who use them on future building and renovation projects. It's not only about how we modernize our kitchen, but also shift our lifestyle in favor of our planet.

Ready to make your home more comfortable and efficient?

Find A Contractor

Does your home live up to the home performance challenge?

TAKE THE HOME QUIZ

Home performance upgrades are more affordable than you might think!

Find Local Incentives and Rebates

Ready to make your home more comfortable and efficient?

Find A Contractor

Haley Kieser, Guest Poster

Haley Kieser is a freelance writer from Arizona. She loves writing and sharing information with others. In her spare time, you can find her exploring the outdoors or tackling a DIY project. She covers home and living for notable brands, such as O2E Brands.