Is Kitchen Cabinet Or Counter Space More Important For Resale Value? Our Real Estate Expert Weighs In

When reselling your home, experts stress how important updated kitchens and bathrooms are to increasing value. However, what increases value more is having the right features. "In the real estate market, both counter and cabinet space are highly desired features," Shaun Martin, founder and CEO of We Buy Houses In Denver, told House Digest in an exclusive interview. "While both counter and cabinet space are important for functionality and aesthetics, when it comes to resale value, counter space is generally considered more valuable. This is because counter space has a direct impact on the usability of the kitchen or bathroom. A larger counter area allows for more efficient food preparation and storage, which can be highly appealing to potential buyers."

"Counter space is all about the horizontal surface area in a kitchen or bathroom. It's where you prep, store, and show off your culinary skills," Martin explained. It can be frustrating trying to chop vegetables or plate dinner but not having adequate space to use the cutting board. Adequate counter space allows you to place all the tools you need without bumping into miscellaneous items. However, this tends to go hand in hand because you'll often need a place to store items to keep them off the counter. "On the other side, cabinet space is all about the number and size of cabinets," he continued. "They're perfect for keeping your dishes, appliances, and cleaning supplies neatly tucked away."

Designing a kitchen for function and resale

Balancing function and aesthetics is essential when designing a kitchen for the highest resale. Shaun Martin exclusively told House Digest that the layout is one of the most important factors for highlighting counter space. "When designing a kitchen with an emphasis on counter space, it is important to consider the overall layout. A well-designed kitchen will have a balance between counter and cabinet space, as well as enough room for movement and traffic flow." Consider what area of the room you'll do the bulk of the cooking as well as the natural path you would take to get through the room and other areas of the kitchen.

Utilizing vertical space is also a great way to lay out your kitchen for more function. "In order to maximize counter space, it is important to utilize all available wall space," Martin suggested. "This can include installing shelves or hanging racks for additional storage options. This not only frees up counter space but also adds visual interest to the kitchen." The vertical space inside cabinets, such as using the backs of the doors or risers, can help maximize your storage and keep counters clear.

Of course, materials also matter when improving resale value. "The quality of materials used for counters can greatly impact its perceived value," Martin said. "Quartz and granite are popular choices for countertops and can significantly increase the value of a home. Additionally, using high-quality materials for cabinets, such as solid wood, can also add to the overall appeal."

How to maximize counter space in the kitchen

Even if you aren't planning a total remodel, there are ways of maximizing the counter space you currently have. "Adding an island to the kitchen can provide additional counter space and storage options," Shaun Martin explained to House Digest. "This is especially useful for larger kitchens with enough room for an island." Islands should have between 42 and 48 inches of clearance on either side to allow for walking, standing, or sitting. For kitchens that aren't big enough for a permanent island, a movable cart, shelves, or cabinetry can stand in its place.

Smart storage is also important to help keep the counter from getting too cluttered. "Utilizing pull-out shelves and drawers in cabinets can make it easier to access items, increasing the functionality of cabinet space," Martin said. "This can also make use of awkward or hard-to-reach spaces in the kitchen." These shelves can keep items organized, and stackable versions can allow you to store more, making the most of cabinet space, even if you don't have a lot.

"Built-in appliances, such as ovens and microwaves, can free up valuable counter space, and add a sleek, modern look to the kitchen," Martin noted. "This can be especially beneficial for smaller kitchens where counter space is limited." Keeping small appliances you don't use daily, such as a blender or food processor, off your counters can also help maximize the space. Consider placing them in their cabinet when they aren't in use.