8 Things You Can Donate from Your Old Kitchen
If anything is a constant in home improvement, it’s the trash. Home improvement projects tend to leave behind plenty of sawdust, screws, and wood scraps. Donating your renovation materials keeps functional items out of the landfill. Other renovators get the materials they need for their projects and you help others while getting rid of your trash. Many local Habitat ReStores provide donation pickup services and your donations may qualify for a tax deduction. Donating is a win-win situation!
Donating is a great way to keep these bulky items out of the landfill. If you’re donating a bathtub or sink, make sure that they are not stained or have chips in the porcelain. If you are remodeling an older bathroom, your vintage fixtures may be surprisingly popular at the local architectural salvage store.
Remodeling a kitchen often means replacing kitchen cabinets. Luckily, someone else may want the kitchen cabinets you remove and recycling them will cut down on construction waste. Kitchen cabinets should be in good working order. Check to make sure that the drawer pulls work and keep the doors and drawers together when you donate them.
You can also donate working appliances like stoves, refrigerators, dishwashers*, and washing machines. They need to be clean and in good working order. Many organizations will help these appliances find a new home, including Habitat for Humanity, home salvage shops, and secondhand stores.
Doors and Windows
Both internal and external doors could be used by someone else but they must be clean and undamaged, so look for holes or alterations before donating. Windows and sliding glass patio doors also can be donated. However, you must check for cracks or holes in the glass, as they might make the glass unstable and likely to break.
Wood and Lumber
Wood from framing or home improvement projects can be easily recycled. Most organizations that accept donated lumber request that you remove nails and screws as they can pose a safety hazard. Other donation concerns include wood with ripped or sharp edges and some types of treated wood. Salvage shops usually accept larger pieces of wood, including two-by-fours and plywood. A local woodworking class might appreciate smaller pieces of wood.
Many salvage yards will recycle wood flooring that is in good and undamaged condition with no visible nails and screws. They will also recycle extra boxes of tiles from a home improvement project. Not all types of flooring are recyclable, so talk to your local salvage shop before donating.
Light fixtures can be recycled through salvage shops or through other community organizations. Salvage shops often have a high demand for working light fixtures, and many community organizations use donated light fixtures when rehabilitating low-income homes. You can also donate light switches, switch covers, and wiring to cut your construction waste down even more.
Handles and Knobs
Many people replace door handles and cabinet knobs when updating a room’s appearance. These fixtures are often still in good condition and can be donated to a local salvage shop. Door handles will be most useful when all the parts are kept together, so put all of the pieces in a bag before donating.
Thanks to Habitat for Humanity for providing this information.
Tips for a Family Friendly Kitchen
The need for a family-friendly kitchen has never been more apparent than in today’s remote environment. Whether your family includes little ones who set up for virtual class at the kitchen table or teens who only move from online classes to the fridge and back, your kitchen should be able to accommodate everyone!
A Safe Space
While accessible storage is great for dishes, inaccessible storage is just as important when you have small children at home. Keep priceless, fragile and potentially dangerous items in high cupboards that cannot be reached by kids even if they stand on a chair or footstool.
Kitchens are also full of sharp things and kids are masters at finding such items. When you’re planning a family-friendly kitchen, allow for specific storage areas for the more dangerous items. For example, a knife block drawer, integrated cutting boards, and high upper shelving for cleaning supplies are great accessories to keep small, prying hands from where they don’t belong.
Simple Surfaces for Sticky Fingers
You’ll also want cabinets that can be cleaned in a cinch. Flat slab may be the way to go — there’s no space for crumbs to get stuck or juice spills to stain and they offer a timeless look. Consider choosing a high-gloss finish as it is the most durable surface. Lacquered or foil-finished fronts are equally easy to clean, while also being stain and moisture-resistant.
Non-porous stone or metal like stainless steel can be sanitized quickly, are all easy to maintain, and stand up well to the chaos of family mealtime.
An Open Kitchen
An open floor plan is currently on most kitchen wish lists and for good reason — they make multitasking a breeze. If you find yourself running from one room to the next while getting kids ready for school in the morning or making dinner at night, knocking down a few walls could solve your problems. By planning an open concept floor plan for your kitchen, you’ll be able to manage more people while also checking more things off your to-do list. Imagine making lunches in the kitchen while still having your eye on the kids eating breakfast at the dining room table or playing in the TV room. You’ll have fewer steps on your fitness tracker but more peace of mind.
An Oasis for the Kids (And You)
Installing a kitchen island, especially one that is appliance-free, is a great addition to a home with kids. Whether you have young ones playing with cereal in their highchairs or for older kids working on homework, an island provides a space close to the action in the kitchen but still a safe distance away. Consider foregoing an island with appliances, as this will allow the island to be a designated kid space and also eliminate some of the most common kitchen hazards. A well-thought out kitchen design can make your home paradise a reality.
More storage is better at any stage of family life, but the key here is to design flexible storage. A family kitchen requires a lot of storage space to make room for all the dishes, pantry items, pots, and pans. Implement traditional storage spaces throughout your kitchen design, including kitchen walk-in pantries, drawers, cabinetry, and pot hangers. Modern cabinet accessories like adjustable drawers and appliance roll-outs allow for flexibility. From sippy cups to coffee cups, baby bottle sterilizing to a juice cleanse kick — a few modern amenities can make life a breeze whatever phase your family is in.
The key to designing a family-friendly kitchen is making sure that you love it. A kitchen that flows and functions will be a room you’ll enjoy spending time in and not a cause of stress and morning traffic jams.
Are you ready to walk into a family-friendly kitchen like this every morning? Our team understands busy family life and can help you create a kitchen that is both beautiful and functional. Visit us at our Shelby Township or our West Bloomfield showrooms to get started or give us a call at 586.247.1140.
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