The Essential Guide to Planning Your Kitchen Bump Out Addition

If your kitchen feels cramped and disorganized, but you don’t have the budget for a massive renovation, a kitchen bump out addition could be the perfect solution. A kitchen bump out extends your existing kitchen by a few feet, typically less than 10 feet, to create more space for cabinets, appliances, countertops, and improved workflow. Unlike a full kitchen addition, a bump out is a more affordable project that can be completed in weeks instead of months.

With proper planning and preparation, you can gain a beautifully updated kitchen that increases enjoyment, functionality and value in your home.

Determining if a Bump Out is Right for Your Home

Before diving into planning, first decide if adding a kitchen bump out makes sense for your home. Assess if you have an exterior wall in your kitchen with enough space in the yard to accommodate an extension. Measure to make sure there aren’t obstacles like HVAC equipment or plumbing fixtures blocking that wall.

kitchen bump out before and after

Also consider your budget and goals. A kitchen bump out costs anywhere from $15,000 to $25,000 on average. Compare that to the $50,000 to $100,000+ price tag of a full kitchen addition. The limited scope and shorter timeline of a bump out makes it the budget-friendly option.

If your main kitchen frustrations stem from lack of space for food prep, cabinets, and appliances rather than an entirely inadequate floorplan, then a bump out may be the perfect fit. This addition can provide extra room for kitchen luxuries without the major investment of a full remodel.

Measure Your Existing Kitchen and Layout

Once you decide to move forward, roll up your sleeves and get precise measurements of your current kitchen. This will allow you to create an accurate layout for the new bump out footprint.

Mark the locations of all windows, doors, and corners with tape. Identify appliances like the stove, sink, and refrigerator and where they connect to plumbing and electrical. Note any potential challenges like angled walls or low ceilings.

Make sure to measure any hallways or entry points that connect to the kitchen. Having these accurate existing measurements will make planning the layout and traffic flow of the new space much easier.

Choose the Size of Your Bump Out

Now comes the exciting part – deciding how big you want your bump out addition! The average dimensions are commonly anywhere from 5 to 10 feet deep and 8 to 15 feet wide, but the right size for you depends on your goals. Here are some factors to keep in mind:

  • A narrower bump out of 5-6 feet deep can accommodate a row of cabinets or appliances.
  • A medium 8 foot depth allows for counters and appliances on both walls or space for a table.
  • Wider bump outs over 10 feet work well for a kitchen island or eating nook.

Make sure to also consider existing doors, pathways, and furniture when planning. You want to avoid creating a cramped, ineffective space or wasted square footage. Creating a rough layout with tape can help visualize the right dimensions in your home.

Pick Features to Include in the Bump Out

Now for the fun part – choosing what you’ll include in this brand new kitchen addition! Consider which amenities and features will make the biggest impact for your needs:

  • Extra cabinetry for storage and organization
  • Countertop space for food prep and serving
  • New appliances like refrigerators, stoves, or ovens
  • Space for a kitchen island or breakfast nook

Look for ways to improve your kitchen workflow and efficiency through the bump out layout. For example, include countertops on multiple sides for a kitchen work triangle, or opt for a peninsula layout to separate cooking and entertaining zones.

Select Materials for the Bump Out

For a cohesive look, you’ll want to choose finishing materials that coordinate with your existing kitchen’s color scheme and style. Use the same cabinets, countertops, flooring, and paint colors if possible.

For brand new surfaces, some popular options include:

  • Durable quartz or granite countertops
  • Stainless steel appliances for a modern look
  • Tile backsplashes that complement counters
  • Energy efficient windows and doors

Visit home improvement stores to view material samples in person. This will help narrow down choices to keep your new bump out on-trend and match the look you love.

Understand Structural Considerations

While less intensive than a full addition, your contractor will still need to make some structural changes to your home to accommodate the bump out extension. Here are some of the most common:

  • Extending roofline – Often a lean-to style roof sloping from the existing house
  • Building out exterior wall and adding foundation support underneath
  • Integrating with existing HVAC, plumbing, and electrical systems
  • Adding wall framing, insulation, and drywall inside

A qualified contractor can assess the extent of structural work needed. Be sure to get the necessary building permits for significant load-bearing modifications.

Compare Contractor Bids and Credentials

Hiring the right contractor is key to staying on time and budget with your kitchen bump out project. Make sure to:

  • Get at least 3 detailed bids from licensed general contractors
  • Ask for a portfolio of previous bump out projects
  • Verify necessary licenses, insurance, and bonding
  • Compare costs of materials and labor rates
  • Read reviews and check contractor references

A reputable contractor with bump out experience can make recommendations to match your budget and navigate challenges like permitting. Make sure you understand exactly what is covered in the contract before signing.

Create a Timeline for Your Bump Out Project

A major perk of choosing a bump out addition is the short timeline compared to a full remodel. You can expect the project duration to be:

  • Planning and permits – 4-6 weeks
  • Construction – 3-5 weeks
  • Installation of finishes – 1-2 weeks

Be sure to order windows, appliances, and finishes early so they arrive in time for installation. Factor in potential weather delays as well. With proper planning, you can have your new bump-out completed in 6-8 weeks!

Prepare Your Kitchen and Home for Construction

It’s important to fully prepare your kitchen and home before the contractors arrive. declutter your cabinets and countertops so that they are empty for the work. Disconnect and remove any appliances if possible.

Set up a temporary cooking space with a microwave, hot plate, and toaster oven in another area if you can. This allows you to still prep meals during the project.

Also be prepared for noise, dust, and workers accessing your kitchen over several weeks. Remove fragile items and lay down drop cloths in and around the work zone. Knowing what to expect ahead of time makes the process smoother.

When construction is finished, it’s time to refresh your kitchen and make the most of your new bump out! Here are some ideas:

  • Organize cabinets and pantries with storage bins and organizers
  • Decorate with new kitchen accessories like rugs, curtains, and lighting
  • Add cozy touches like a cushioned banquette in a breakfast nook
  • Host family dinners and parties to show off your expanded kitchen

Your beautiful, updated kitchen is sure to become the heart of your home. With increased storage, counters, and appliances, you can cook, entertain, and live more comfortably.

And remember that kitchen remodels offer one of the highest returns on investment for homeowners. Your bump out addition could add significant value to your property if you ever choose to sell.

You can create the kitchen of your dreams with the help of this guide. Turn your small, cramped kitchen into a spacious showpiece without the headaches of a full remodel. Use these tips to gain usable square footage and make your home more enjoyable in just weeks!

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