Never pay a deposit of more than 25% of the total contract value and ensure you have a written schedule for further payments. Don't pay in full until you have received delivery of your goods. The KBSA (Kitchen Bathroom Bedroom Specialists Association) has these guidelines for choosing your kitchen company: Visit a company that has a showroom so you can inspect the quality of the product and the standard of installation. Choose a retail member with a track record of good installations and ask to speak to some previous customers. Be careful about paying in full for your kitchen in advance. You shouldn't pay a deposit of more than 25% and as it's likely that you'll be asked to make an interim payment, ask for a written payment schedule. Make sure you have a written quotation that covers every aspect of the job including fitting, flooring and any structural alterations you have discussed. Don't sign anything unless you are prepared to honour your side of the contract.
Island kitchen layout. What is it? Probably the most popular kitchen element of recent years, an island sits in the centre of a room, with worktops on the surrounding walls. If the space is large enough, an island unit provides a multifunctional space that can work as somewhere to cook, prep, eat and entertain. It can act as a ‘bridge', cutting down on leg work between workstations, and, in a large room, it makes the most of unused space. Consider incorporating a hob and sink as well as a dishwasher, wine cooler and recycling bin. There should be plenty of room left over for decent storage, too. Make sure there's at least one metre between the island and all the cabinetry surrounding it, so that you can open all doors and drawers.
L-shaped kitchen layout. What is it? A truly versatile design, the L-shaped kitchen comprises two runs of cabinets at right angles along adjacent walls. Here you can create the ultimate working triangle with the fridge at one end of the L, the hob on the other and the sink in between. This layout feels open, but can be more tricky to work with. Make sure there's enough space in between each zone and consider installing a bank of built-in appliances on one side for ease of use and a streamlined effect. The best ergonomic placing has the hob on one wall, and the sink and fridge on the other, but do make sure there is adequate workspace between these elements. this can be an efficient layout for one cook, but two may find themselves under one another's feet – you could include an extra prep sink to ease the pressure. If space allows, you could also place a small dining table at the side. A classic layout that works in any size space, the L-shaped kitchen is practical, concise and looks great.
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