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Size doesn’t matter reveals Houzz kitchen survey

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Americans love kitchens no matter the size.

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Residential realtors report the kitchen as the room receiving the most attention by both men and women during the home purchase process. Homeowners list it as their #1 area to be remodeled.

Yet, expanding the size of the kitchen isn't a priority cites an October 2013 survey of kitchen remodel trends by Houzz.com. The study included responses from 7,812 homeowners registered with the online design and remodel web community.

In fact, only a third of survey respondents cited enlarging the kitchen as important. Instead, a whopping 77 percent listed merging the kitchen with an adjacent living area as essential to their remodel plan.

In addition, because the kitchen serves as the central gathering and entertainment area of residential homes, three in five survey takers stated plans to add an island to the room.

When it comes to style, respondents are clear on their preference. Forty nine percent of homeowners under age 44 define their favorite style as contemporary while another 39 percent describe it as modern. Not unexpectedly, 82.7 percent of survey respondents in the age 45-65+ age group turn to traditional design.

What do these preferences mean for kitchen accents? Answers are consistent whether the kitchen is large or tiny.

Eye-catching colors are reported as preferred by 25 percent of survey takers, yet the remaining majority lean toward soft neutral hues.

While granite countertops are still at the top of the list for kitchen upgrades, 50 percent of respondents selected quartz, marble, butcher block, stainless steel or another surface as their first choice.

Tile has not vanished completely from kitchens. No longer preferred for countertops, it remains popular for backsplashes and flooring.

An emerging trend in appliance surfaces is perhaps most surprising, with 28 percent of Houzz survey takers stating a preference for white, color or cabinet-surfaced appliances. Stainless steel remains the first choice for 65 percent.

The most sought-after appliance is a chef’s stove, note 32 percent of survey takers, followed by double ovens, at 18 percent, confirming a homeowner preference for cooking flexibility.

Yes, Americans love their kitchens, and they’ll remodel them to get the features they want. A large size, though, isn't at the top of their list.

“People renovating their kitchens have to make thousands of decisions about layout, styles, products, the right kitchen designers and remodelers to hire for their project, and much more,” said Liza Hausman, VP of Community for Houzz. “We’re pleased to share this data to give people greater confidence in their choices, and to give home professionals greater insights into their clients’ wants and needs.”

The “Kitchen Remodeling Survey” is an online assessment of users of Houzz.com. The full report can be viewed at: http://info.houzz.com/rs/houzz/images/HouzzKitchenStudy.pdf.

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