Timeline of a Kitchen Renovation

Embarking on a kitchen or bathroom renovation is a big commitment which takes careful planning and organisation. With multiple stages and tradespeople involved it can be hard to know what to expect. Below we have compiled a list of the typical stages involved in a kitchen or bathroom project.

Retreat Design are the experts in providing a seamless renovation and will manage the project from start to finish. For information on the initial design phase, please also have a read of this page which outlines the Design Process.



A few weeks before your renovation is scheduled to commence your designer will touch base with a firm project timeframe that will be shared with you via our online project management system. Trade prices will be confirmed and our admin team will provide you with information on how to get your home “renovation ready”. It is best to have a makeshift ‘camp kitchen’ set up for use during the weeks you will be without one.


The first step is to dis-connect all your electrical, gas and water services. Our project manager will liaise with you and our tradespeople on an appropriate time. This usually takes a few hours on a convenient day.


This is the messiest part of a renovation so being prepared and having your house “renovation ready” is a good idea. A large kitchen can take a day or two to demo and the crew will remove all the rubbish they create during the process. Ensuring there is floor protection, other areas of the house are protected from dust and you are generally ready for the mess and dust is something you can chat through with our project manager before the demolition commences.

Building Work

Once the existing kitchen has been removed any building work, such as building walls, can commence. Where the building works are significant and require structural changes to your house layout, a registered builder is engaged to perform the work.

First Fix

Now the electrician and plumber return to chase and complete a “first fix”. This is the process of getting electrical wiring and plumbing chased into the new position, as per the shop drawings you have signed off on.

Cabinetry Install

Your cabinetry is delivered at the very beginning of the renovation process, so once your kitchen space is ready, the cabinetry installation only takes a few days. Our installation team are all qualified cabinet makers employed by Retreat Design, we don’t sub contract out the installation of our cabinetry! Once the installation is completed, an installer will template your bench tops and deliver them to our stonemason. At this time, the electrician and plumber may return to re-connect any services that can be connected without a bench top, such as the dishwasher. There is often a wait between the install of cabinetry and install of bench tops of about 10 days where there isn’t much going on.

Bench tops

It usually takes 10-12 days from the time the kitchen cabinetry is installed and a template is made until the stone is available for installation. Bench top installation usually takes a few hours on a day convenient for you.

Splash backs

If you have a splash back, the splash back also requires a template, but this cannot be done until the bench tops have been installed. Glass splash backs have the quickest turnaround, with glass usually able to be installed within 3 days of the splash back templating occurring. If you are having the splash back tiled, this generally takes 2-3 days.

Final Fix / Additional Trades

At this time, the electrician and plumber return to fit off all your plumbing and electrical fittings. This is also the time where additional tradespeople may be required, depending on the scope of work. If cornicing has been removed during the demolition phase, a plasterer will come and re-cornice and patch and in turn a painter will also then be required. Appliances are connected during final fix so they are ready for use.


Once final cabinetry adjustments are made, your designer will walk through your new kitchen space with you to identify any final snagging items. Once this list has been made (if at all) your project has reached practical completion and the team will leave you in peace to enjoy your new kitchen space.


This is by far the best bit of the process for everyone. As the client, you get to enjoy a new space that has been designed by you with one of our clever designers to make your life easier and happier. As the designers and team at Retreat Design, we get the satisfaction of knowing we have delivered a space that genuinely adds value to your lifestyle.


Allow 5-6 weeks for your standard kitchen installation. Some bespoke or special items may take longer. Lead times for manufacture of cabinetry can be between 8-14 weeks depending on the finish.


kitchen renovation demolition

kitchen renovation process

kitchen renovation installation timeline

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About the Design Blog

Welcome to the Design Blog. Here we're sharing the latest kitchen and bathroom products from our Italian manufacturers. We'll also bring you inspiring kitchen renovations and beautiful bathrooms. Feel free to ask questions in the comments.