Kichen renovation

Kitchen renovation: 7 steps

The kitchen: Much more than a technical room, a real living space!

The kitchen is often considered a simple technical room. But for me, it is much more than that. It is a space where unforgettable memories are created, where we share wonderful moments with family or friends, even when we are far from home.

A place of conviviality and sharing

As an expat, your kitchen becomes a refuge, a place where you can recreate a bit of home in a foreign environment. I love designing kitchens because they are the heart of the home. A warm place where you can prepare and enjoy comforting meals, chat over a glass of wine, or even help the kids with their homework. Whether you’re sitting around a table or standing at a central island, the kitchen offers a relaxed and welcoming atmosphere, unlike the formality of the dining room or living room.

Functionality and aesthetics: a winning duo

For all these reasons, I am committed to creating functional and practical kitchens, where everything has its place. I choose materials that are both resistant and aesthetic, for spaces that combine durability and beauty. A well-designed kitchen can really make all the difference in your daily life, especially when you live far from your home country.

Your kitchen, your living space

My goal? Transform your kitchen into a real living space, adapted to your daily life and your needs as an expatriate. Because every moment spent in this space must be a moment of pleasure and sharing, a place where you can feel at home, no matter where you are in the world.

Steps of Kitchen Renovation

1. Planning and Design

The first step to a successful renovation is careful planning. Here’s how you can get started:

  • Needs Analysis: Identify what’s missing from your current kitchen. Do you need more storage, a better layout, or new appliances?


  • Inspiration: Look for design ideas that fit your style. Flip through decorating magazines, explore websites, and create an inspiration board on Pinterest.


  • Budget: Set a realistic budget. Include costs for materials, labor, and a cushion for contingencies.

2. Removal and Demolition

Once you have your plan in place, it’s time to prepare the space for the transformation:

Removal of existing elements: Remove old furniture, countertops and appliances. Be sure to turn off the water and electricity before you begin.

Demolition: If necessary, knock down walls to reorganize the space. Consult a professional to check that the walls are not load-bearing.

3. Upgrading Facilities

With the space cleared, update the technical installations:

  • Plumbing: Install or replace water and drain lines. Move the sink if necessary and add equipment such as a dishwasher.
  • Electrical: Upgrade the electrical system to accommodate new appliances and light fixtures. Ensure that the wiring complies with safety standards.
  • Ventilation: Install an effective ventilation system to eliminate odors and smoke.

4. Coatings and Finishes

Once the fixtures are in place, move on to the finishes and coverings:

Flooring: Choose a durable, easy-to-clean material, such as tile, vinyl or hardwood.

Walls: Paint the walls with a moisture-resistant paint or install a decorative backsplash.

Ceiling: A fresh coat of paint can do wonders.

5. Installation of Furniture and Appliances

It’s time to install the main elements:

Kitchen furniture: Assemble the cabinets and drawers. Make sure they are level and well secured.

Countertops: Install the countertops according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Opt for resistant materials like quartz, granite or composite. Our favorites from Cosentino.

Household appliances: Install the oven, refrigerator, and dishwasher. Check the water and electrical connections.

6. Lighting and Decoration

Finishing touches add character and comfort:

Lighting: Install general lighting, under-cabinet lighting, and decorative light fixtures.

Decoration: Add decorative elements like curtains, plants, and stylish kitchenware. Consider smart storage solutions to keep your space organized.

7. Inspection and Finishing

Before you close, do a complete inspection:

Checks: Make sure all appliances are working properly and that the installations are secure.

Cleaning: Thoroughly clean the kitchen to remove dust and debris.

Finishing Touches: Make any final adjustments and adjustments that may be necessary.

Renovating a kitchen can seem daunting, but with careful planning and execution, you can transform this space into a modern, functional and aesthetically pleasing space, even as an expat. Hire professionals for the technical aspects and focus on quality materials.

Plan your renovation work

Plan the renovation work

Why is it a good idea to plan your renovation work during your summer vacation?

Summer vacation is the longest vacation for many people, it is also the time when you are away from home the most.

I always recommend, as much as possible, to carry out the work when you do not yet live in the place. You will avoid dust, being inconvenienced in your daily life. Moreover, you won’t disturb the craftsmen who work in your home. You will avoid taking risks with the machines of the craftsmen which remain there even in the evening.

However, this is not always feasible so summer vacation is a good alternative.

Nowadays, we can organize site meetings by video from your vacation spot. It’s always less stressful when you’re by the pool, right?

  • Obviously, before your departure on vacation, the budget must be well defined. The work must be planned, the renovation companies will be consulted beforehand to plan a schedule which will coincide with your dates of absence.

So what renovations can I do?

I’m going on vacation for 1 week:

I can change windows, or redo parquet or tiling on a large area.

My vacation lasts 2 weeks:

I can renovate my bathroom or my kitchen (from floor to ceiling). If you only have one bathroom at home, it is unusable during the work, so you might as well take advantage of it while you go on vacation, right?

All materials must be ordered in advance to avoid any unforeseen circumstances.

I am planning renovations for 3 weeks:

We can redo the insulation of the roof or attic for the following winter, replace all the windows. The walls can also be painted and you get a nice surprise when you are back at home.

We will have enough time to respect the drying times.

Je planifie mes travaux pendant 1 mois de congé:

We can consider demolition or building an additional wall, upgrading the whole electricity, wall coatings and painting.

Coverings for all floors. We can respect drying times.

My accommodation is free for 2 months:

This is the opportunity to create the house extension you dream of, provided that all administrative procedures have been completed with the administrations upstream.

Of course, not all renovation companies work in the summer, but I select those that work at the same time as me.

Summer is also a good season for all insulation, heating and energy renovation work.

Photo: Rene Asmussen

Interior design ideas: here