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6 Benefits of Having a Great Kitchen Island

Spacious kitchen with open shelving and solid oak work surfaces. The pendant lights and units are both by Ikea
Andreas von Einsiedel/ Getty Images
Spacious kitchen with open shelving and solid oak work surfaces. The pendant lights and units are both by Ikea

Andreas von Einsiedel/ Getty Images

In every kitchen, there is the potential for great storage, display, and functionality. The sad fact is all kitchens don’t have enough of any of these. A kitchen island solves these problems and looks beautiful doing it.  From mobile islands to seating area kitchen islands, the amenity of having one or two in your kitchen is an added bonus.  If you are fortunate to design or choose a home with a kitchen island you’re in for a treat. For those that are on the fence as to whether to have one, look at these 6 benefits of having a great kitchen island.

Smiling friends standing by kitchen island at home

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1. An island adds storage area in addition to cabinetry:

If your kitchen is lacking storage areas, a kitchen island may solve your problem.  With the option of additional drawers, pull out shelves, and cabinets, the island is an extension to your existing casework.  Ever thought you didn’t have enough room for recycling bins?  Under a kitchen island makes a great accessible space because it doesn’t interfere with the main preparation area of the rest of the kitchen.

2. A kitchen island is perfect for kids:

Whether it is homework time or they pitch in to help make dinner, a kitchen island is a great place for kids to feel part of the action and be in close eye view.  Another option for kitchen islands is to place kid’s height amenities like a microwave and refrigerated drawer in reach.  For after school snacks and Saturday morning early breakfasts, amenities that the kids can feel independent using are a good idea for some households.

kitchen counter and island

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3. Extra seating is a major asset:

A kitchen island can act as informal dining area for the kids or it can act as additional seating when entertaining.  Having access to your family or guests is always an advantage while cooking and preparing meals.  Even if your kitchen is small, a counter extension into the adjacent room can act as an island.  Whether your space can seat 2 or 6, it’s always a plus to be able to seat more people.

4. A movable kitchen island adds versatility:

Need extra counter space and at other times need more floor space? A movable kitchen island offers more room when you and your friends want to cook a huge meal and each person takes a section of the kitchen to prepare. Once your meal is complete, roll your kitchen island out of the way for added space.  Movable kitchens are ideal for smaller kitchens that need the best of both worlds.

kitchen island with family surrounding

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5. Place additional kitchen amenities at your island:

For larger kitchens the ability to add preparation sinks, refrigerator drawers, and additional cooking area is a way to make your kitchen more functional and useful.  Since larger kitchens have the ability to have plumbing and electrical services run to them the options are limitless. Add a range hood over your stove/grill and now your island becomes the main hub of cooking and entertaining.

6. The material options for an island are endless:

Whether you are using your island for utilitarian purposes or you want the island to be the show stopper of the kitchen, there is a counter top surface for you.  If cost is a concern, consider plastic laminate or solid surface man made finishes.  For mid level spending consider higher grades of solid surfaces or stained concrete. At the high end of the cost spectrum are butcher block, granite, and custom exotic wood varieties.  Visit a countertop retailer for inspiration or look through a kitchen and bath magazine to get dream kitchen island ideas.

If you think a kitchen island is just for show, you now have legitimate reasons why your kitchen can benefit from one.  From storage to additional seating, any sized home will love the versatility a kitchen island offers.

Freshome readers, do you own a kitchen island in your home? Are you thinking about putting one in? Let us know, as we love to hear your comments.