Armchair Builder

Avoiding Kitchen Planning Mistakes

Our home kitchens have become such a big part of our lives.  Not only do we cook in them but we also work, socialize and communicate in them.  So it’s really important to take the time to think through how the new space will come together.  Here are some builder tips to avoid the typical kitchen planning mistakes.

The Age Old Triangle

Have you heard of the triangle design for kitchens?  Basically, your refrigerator, sink and range all form the points of a triangle on the house plan.  When designing the kitchen, it’s always best to keep the sides of this triangle as short as possible.  The idea here is that you want to limit the distance you need to walk to use these three primary kitchen tools.  You may be tempted to stretch this triangle out for one reason or another…but don’t as you will regret it as time goes on.

Kitchen Triangle Measurements

Kitchen Triangle



You may be running marathons today, but there may come a time where you need a wheelchair.  All it takes is a simple slip on some ice or stairs to seriously impact your mobility.  For this reason it’s important to think about wheelchair access when planning your kitchen.  Your new design should maintain a minimum of 36 inches in front of all appliances, cabinets and sinks in order to provide the necessary access.  When planning starts, you may be tempted to increase the size of that island to get more counter space.  However if it encroaches on the 36 inch rule, steer clear.  This is one of the more common kitchen planning mistakes.


Does your kitchen have enough storage?  My guess is 99 percent of you said no.  So, be sure to take the time to learn about all of your options when it comes to storage solutions for your new cabinets.  Most cabinet manufacturers have a huge book of options for you to choose from.  Not only can these special cabinets add storage, but they can also make your life much easier.  From waste basket cabinets, to pullout spice racks, these newer designs can add real functionality to your kitchen.

Video:  Kitchen Planning Mistakes

It’s sometimes good to look at an example when discussing kitchen planning mistakes.  Take a look at our latest video below for some common pitfalls in design.  And if you want more information about remodeling your kitchen, stop by our Kitchen Remodel resource page

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