We start our day with breakfast in the kitchen and finish it with family dinner, so this room should be both functional and comfortable.

But that’s not always possible due to these layout problems.

1. No Kitchen Work Triangle

The triangle includes the refrigerator, stove and sink. In the space between them, all the main work occurs; that’s why it’s necessary to ensure easy access to these areas.Each side of the triangle should be at least three meters — in a small kitchen — but not more than 7.5-8 meters in a larger kitchen.

Otherwise, the space will be too tight to work in, or you will spend lots of time running around the kitchen.

A well planned kitchen has a designated space for meal prep.

2. Not Enough Space for Meal Prep

When meal prep must be done on multiple surfaces, it requires more energy (jumping back and forth from one area to the next) and makes cooking uncomfortable.

Carefully consider available space for the working area.

If you can’t redesign your kitchen, then add a bar or kitchen island to provide the space you need to peel, chop, slice and spice a delicious meal.

A functional kitchen has enough lighting and electrical outlets.

3. Not Enough Lighting or Outlets

Meal prep and cooking require adequate task lighting, so the working, cooking and dining areas should be well lit, and — as a bonus — add cabinet lighting for extra clarity and ambiance. No room requires as many electrical outlets as the kitchen.

Think about it: How many appliances do you have? There’s a refrigerator, a range, a microwave, a toaster, maybe a toaster oven and an electrical can opener, a slow cooker, a blender, a stand mixer, a coffeemaker — the list goes on and on, especially if you love to cook and bake.

Now count how many outlets you have in the kitchen. You need at least eight outlets around the perimeter.

So, if you’re buying a house, consider more than the kitchen’s visual appeal. Look at the layout, the lighting, the outlets and overall space, and determine whether it’s functional.

4. Not Enough Storage

The kitchen contains various items, including furniture, appliances, gadgets and dishes. Without designated storage, you will constantly run out of places to put things and the result is a cluttered mess. For instance, you might use the dining table and the worktop not as intended, but as additional shelves. And all this because of insufficient cabinetry and shelving. To avoid this, maximize your vertical space. Install cabinets in free space above the refrigerator and above the stove, and shelving just under the ceiling.

Look everywhere for additional storage — up (above the range and refrigerator) and on pantry doors.
Today’s Homeowner Tips

Remember, when it comes to finding additional storage opportunities — look up.
If you still need more storage, add a freestanding baker’s rack.

And if you’re living in a home that no longer has a functional kitchen, consider the adjustments you can make to change that.

Have you encountered any other kitchen layout problems? If so, share your stories in the comments!

Stella Robinson is a creative writer, mother, blogger and creator of the Best Boning Knife reviewing website.

Editorial Contributors
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Danny Lipford


Danny Lipford is a home improvement expert and television personality who started his remodeling business, Lipford Construction, at the age of 21 in Mobile, Alabama. He gained national recognition as the host of the nationally syndicated television show, Today's Homeowner with Danny Lipford, which started as a small cable show in Mobile. Danny's expertise in home improvement has also led him to be a contributor to popular magazines and websites and the go-to source for advice on everything related to the home. He has made over 200 national television appearances and served as the home improvement expert for CBS's The Early Show and The Weather Channel for over a decade. Danny is also the founder of 3 Echoes Content Studio, TodaysHomeowner.com, and Checking In With Chelsea, a décor and lifestyle blog.

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