Consumer Reports' Guide To Building A Social Kitchen Designed To Last On Any Budget How to plan a remodeling budget to create space to accommodate parties, homework & more; Plus, Ratings of countertops, flooring, appliances and the best places to shop for them

YONKERS, N.Y., June 3, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today's kitchens are built for entertaining, digital networks and cooking, but creating one that meets all of these needs can be a challenge. Consumer Reports has compiled a comprehensive kitchen remodeling guide that features essential steps to creating a truly social kitchen on any budget that is featured in the July 2014 issue of Consumer Reports and online at www.ConsumerReports.org.  

The report also includes complete Ratings of countertops, flooring, major appliances and appliance stores.

How to Create a Social Kitchen

A recent survey conducted by Consumer Reports asked more than 1,000 Americans what activities they do in the kitchen at least once in a typical week and found that uses for the kitchen go beyond meal prep. Nearly half entertain regularly in the kitchen, 58 percent go online there (think FaceTime and recipe downloads), and 61 percent use the space to do homework/paperwork. Below are some of the steps from Consumer Reports guide for designing a social kitchen that will stand the test of time:

  • Open up the space – with care. Be judicious when eliminating barriers. Using half-walls or arched openings can create a sense of openness while maintaining traffic flow. Color can be a great connector between the kitchen and the larger living/dining room area.
  • Bring back the eat-in kitchen. Built-in banquettes are making a comeback. Casual dining is integral to the social kitchen, and it's good for resale value. It's also a place to do the bills or help with the homework and its base can provide additional storage.
  • Add an island. This central counter will give people a place to sit while the cook prepares the meal. Just don't let it clog traffic – there should be 42 to 48 inches of clearance on all sides.
  • Build in charging stations. For many people the kitchen is where their electronic devices live. Charging stations can be tucked into a cabinet or drawer that's fitted with docks and electrical outlets.

For more information on designing a social kitchen, advice on hiring professionals and Ratings on everything from dishwashers to flooring and more, check out the July 2014 issue of Consumer Reports and www.ConsumerReports.org.  

The material above is intended for legitimate news entities only; it may not be used for advertising or promotional purposes. Consumer Reports® is an expert, independent nonprofit organization whose mission is to work for a fair, just, and safe marketplace for all consumers and to empower consumers to protect themselves.  We accept no advertising and pay for all the products we test. We are not beholden to any commercial interest. Our income is derived from the sale of Consumer Reports®, ConsumerReports.org® and our other publications and information products, services, fees, and noncommercial contributions and grants. Our Ratings and reports are intended solely for the use of our readers. Neither the Ratings nor the reports may be used in advertising or for any other commercial purpose without our permission. Consumer Reports will take all steps open to it to prevent commercial use of its materials, its name, or the name of Consumer Reports®.

SOURCE Consumer Reports



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