Our new blog series looks at everything to do with kitchen renovations, reviewing the big ideas at play when planning and executing a kitchen refresh or redo.  Each year, Houzz undertakes an online quantitative survey of their registered users in New Zealand focused on kitchen renovation projects.  

In 2017, The Houzz kitchen trends study uncovered a surprising health benefit - a third of homeowners surveyed report leading healthier lives after a kitchen renovation, with more home cooking and less takeaways.  In 2018 reducing clutter was one of the top motivations for upgrading cabinets during a kitchen renovation.

Why renovate?

So, what is the trigger that leads us to finally take the plunge?  For most of us it gets to the point where we can no longer stand the sight of an old kitchen and that’s enough to get our rebuild rolling.  For others, it comes down to dollars and cents – people finally having the means to take on a long-overdue renovation.  Some need to renovate due to extreme deterioration or safety concerns.  The purchase of a first home or a move is another common trigger, as is adapting to lifestyle and family changes.

Flow and layout

Nearly half of the New Zealanders surveyed online by Houzz increased the size of their kitchen during renovations and improved flow into other areas of their properties — with 35% creating a better indoor/outdoor flow.  As far as lay-outs go, almost a third go for U-shaped, with over 20% opting for galley and 16% preferring L-shaped kitchens.

Benchtops and Laminate

Benchtops are the most common major feature to upgrade during kitchen renovations, followed by cabinets and sinks.  A third of people surveyed stick with white for their benchtop colour with laminate  increasing in popularity as the leading material, followed closely by engineered quartz and then granite.   White cabinetry is still the most popular choice with more than half of the updated kitchens in New Zealand, streets ahead of less popular grey or beige options.  Over the past 12 months, light wood and black have also become more popular. 

DIY or phone a friend(ly professional)?

In 2018 the preferred style of kitchen was predominantly contemporary or modern (54%), followed by traditional, country and Scandinavian looks.  Almost 90% of people renovating this critical area of their home choose to get guidance from a professional, whether it be a cabinet maker, kitchen specialist or architect.  Only a brave 10% strike out on their own to build their dream kitchen.  57% go the extra step of ordering custom cabinetry, while 20% opt for semi-custom, leaving 15% to buy off-the-shelf units.  As far as costs go, over 20% of renovating homeowners spent over $35,000 with those between the ages of 35 and 54 being the most willing to splurge..


Look out for our next article in our Kiwi Kitchen Series.

A third of kiwis surveyed say they prefer the U-shaped kitchen

A third of kiwis surveyed say they prefer the U-shaped kitchen

Extracts from the Houzz Kitchen Trends report 2018

Extracts from the Houzz Kitchen Trends report 2018