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How to Survive a Kitchen Remodel

Tips for Living Through Remodeling a Kitchen

Surviving a kitchen remodel can be a challenge. Learning to live without a kitchen isn't easy, and remodeling creates disorder in your home that can make it tough to stay organized. With some preparation, however, you can ease the restrictions and disruptions of a kitchen remodel.

How to Live Without a Kitchen

Take away the stove, oven and kitchen sink, and cooking becomes a herculean task. Here are some tips for living without a kitchen during your remodel.

Create a Temporary Kitchen

Hot plate on white kitchen counter

Before walls are torn down and appliances removed, find an area of your house such as the basement, dining room or even the garage where you can set up a temporary kitchen. A folding table suffices as a countertop, providing room for secondary appliances that make homemade meals a reality. Situate a toaster oven, coffee maker, crock-pot, microwave or even an electric single burner, and you'll have some limited kitchen functionality.

Set Aside the Right Tools

Clear plastic storage containers

In a plastic storage bin, set aside the cooking utensils and cookware items that are compatible with the microwave, toaster oven, etc. Another small bin can keep essentials like tin foil, plastic wrap, garbage bags and sandwich bags handy, while everything else goes into storage.

Embrace Disposable Utensils and Dishes

Plastic cutlery on a paper plate

With the dishwasher out of order, it may even be best to stock up on paper plates, plastic forks/knives and more to save you from washing your dishes in the bathroom sink. Using disposable eating utensils and dishes also allows you to eat at home, rather than go out for food.

Stock Ready-to-Eat Items

Greek salad in bowl

Take time to inventory your pantry and stock up on dry and canned goods such as cereals, canned and dry soups, canned fruit and vegetables, etc. Things like crackers, nuts, peanut butter, raisins, string cheese and fruit make for quick snacks; while prepared foods including heat-and-serve entrées, the salad bar or a rotisserie chicken can be found in your grocer's deli.

Freeze Ahead or Eat Out

Prepared meals in plastic bags for freezing

Consider creating freeze-and-heat meals and make use of your crock-pot for meals like pot roast and chili. Finally, acknowledge that packing a lunch may be difficult during a renovation so consider allowing yourself – and your kids – the luxury of buying lunch.

How to Keep Your Home Clean, Organized and Safe

Remodeling can impact your entire home and everyone in it. Here are some additional tips to help you survive a kitchen remodel.

Create Storage for Construction Materials

Stacks of cabinet doors

Identify and clear out an area in your home or garage where the cabinetry pieces and construction materials can be stored during the remodeling process. This will also help to keep the rest of your home in order while the remodeling is taking place.

Control Dust

Doorway sealed during remodel

While it may be impossible to completely eliminate dust from a remodel, you can do your best to minimize it. Seal off doorways to the area that is being remodeled. Close all vents on the same floor where the remodeling is taking place. Clean or change your HVAC filter daily.

Clear Out the Work Area

Decor and artwork on a counter

Remove items such as computers, artwork, plants, countertop appliances and furniture to another area of your home to prevent unintended damage and make it easier for the remodeling crew to do their work.

Keep Kids and Pets Safe

Child trying to open a closed door

Keep doors and work areas closed and locked or blocked off whenever possible to avoid exposing kids and pets to power tools, wires and other hazards.