This month’s issue of Kitchen & Bath Design News 4/10 outlined consumer trends according to class by an online research study done by RICKI, the Research Institute for Cooking & Kitchen Intelligence, which is based in Charlotte, NC.
Ultra-High End Consumers invest in products that are a reflection of their personalities.
Income is, predictably, a good indicator of how a consumer approaches their kitchen project, whether or not they hire a designer, use name brand products, and how much they spend of course. Here is a quick reference to the conclusions of the survey:
Ultra-High End consumers (incomes of $200,ooo or more) are, in large part:
- Very brand-conscious, believing that brands reflect on their personality.
- Twice as likely to seek out professional help from a kitchen & bath designer.
- More engaged in their kitchens, considering it the heart of the home, and possibly their favorite room in the home.
High-End Consumers tend to not worry about brand names in their kitchens.
High-End Consumers (incomes of between $100,000 and 200,000) and Moderate Consumers (income less than $100,000) are:
- Less likely to seek out professional design advice.
- Not as concerned with brand name appliances or materials.
- Spend a third to an eighth of what Ultra-High End consumers spend on kitchen improvements.
Moderate Consumers are the most likely "do-it-yourselfers" and penny-pinchers.
As a homeowner clearly in the moderate consumer category, and a kitchen designer who has worked for clients in all categories, I would like to give my own humble opinion, that having a trained kitchen designer come to look at your kitchen and draw up at least some initial plans is a great idea, even on a small budget, especially if you don’t have a natural eye for color or detail.
A good designer can also help you avoid common pitfalls, get quotes, or think up creative solutions for your unique style, like custom storage or shelving. Custom usually does mean more expensive, but I know lots of designers (including myself) have tricks up their sleeves to get you a better look and more functionality within your budget.
So whether you have $2,000 to spend, or $200,000, the moral of the story is the same: Find qualified design advice if for no other reason than a second opinion to your own.
Happy Remodeling, especially to all the folks in Lake Norman, NC!