What You Should Ask Yourself When Choosing a New Kitchen Island

What You Should Ask Yourself When Choosing a New Kitchen Island

Because of its practicality and visual interest, an island is a frequent addition to kitchens of all types. It will be particularly appreciated in a small kitchen with little countertop surface area.

This means that care should be taken when picking a kitchen island model to make sure it complements your decor. Here are the main things to consider before you buy.

What Will Be Its Main Use?

Firstly, you must determine what you wish to gain by installing this island.

  • More food prep surface area?
  • An additional eating area where you can have a quick bite without having to use the big dining table?
  • Supplementary storage space?
  • Etc...

Answering these questions will help you shop more effectively.

Hidden Storage or Open Shelving?

If you’re going through the trouble of installing a kitchen island, you might as well use this opportunity to expand your storage capacity. For example, islands can be equipped with a microwave or be where you keep the pots and pans and plastic containers.

Some models don’t have cabinets doors but open shelving. You can utilize this space to display your best dinnerware or mug sets. What to avoid? Creating an eyesore by turning the island into a junk storage area.

So, if you’re the type of person who doesn’t put things away as soon as you’re done with them, opt for closed storage that can conceal the mess instead of doorless shelves.  

Mobile or Stationary?

Islands on wheels can be lifesavers! They are especially handy in a small kitchen where it makes sense to move the island to where you need it when you need it. Moreover, they are quite affordable! However, movable islands tend to not be as elegantly designed as full stationary models.

Where to Put It?

Think about your kitchen’s floor space. Your island must not become a hindrance:

  • For example, will positioning it at a 900 angle impede traffic flow? If the answer is yes, where else could it be placed? Or, could you choose a smaller model?
  • Is there room for a few high chairs? If so, will the seated people have their backs to a kitchen feature like a window or the table? Then another orientation would be best.

If you don’t have enough square footage, an island may not be the best option for you. Have you thought about a butcher’s block or a high-end kitchen cart?

Do You Have Lots of Space?

If you have a large kitchen, consider integrating appliances into your new island! To really be on trend, conceal them with panels, like cabinet doors.

Don’t forget to include electrician fees in your budget to connect all these devices. Indeed, appliances or no, adding an outlet to your new island is quite useful.

Have You Taken Your Measurements?

Once you have determined what kind of island suits you, it is important that you take precise measurements. The recommended clearance between the island and counter is 3 feet, which allows for freedom of movement while making it easy to use both surfaces. Up to 40 inches of clearance are recommended for open cabinet doors and drawers.

Here’s a tip: to visualize how your planned island will inhabit the space, outline its dimensions on the floor with adhesive tape.

Is There Sufficient Lighting?

Depending on where you will be placing the island, you may need to add lights. Especially if the island is intended to be a work area! Recessed, fixtures or chandelier … decide where they should go beforehand.


An island can be the perfect addition to a kitchen, so long as its installation has been properly planned before the renovation begins. Good luck!

RE/MAX Québec

By RE/MAX Québec

By RE/MAX Québec

A leader in the real estate industry since 1982, the RE/MAX network brings together the most efficient brokers.