Kitchens: Mark Millar shares pros and cons of fitted and free-standing kitchens

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Building pro Mark Millar will be hosting a new series on Channel 5 where he helps homeowners create the kitchens and bathrooms of their dreams. Kitchens and bathrooms are arguably the most used rooms in the house, making them the most prone to wear and tear, and the most viewed. Not only can a decent kitchen or bathroom look stunning, but it can add a lot of value to a property.

However, fitting and designing a kitchen or bathroom is not an easy job and is not for the faint-hearted.

In this heart-warming new show, Mark helps homeowners create the rooms of their dreams on any budget using his 30 years of experience and sheer determination.

Mark, who has previously appeared on BBC1’s DIY SOS and How Safe is Your House, spoke exclusively to about the new show while offering some advice for homeowners looking to update their own kitchens and bathrooms.

While a fitted kitchen is at the top of most people’s wish lists, some homeowners prefer to buy second-hand free-standing kitchens from sites like eBay.

Free-standing kitchens can look great if you’re hoping to achieve a more retro look or if you want something truly unique.

Meanwhile, a fitted kitchen can look more sleek and modern.

Mark said both options come with their own list of pros and cons.

He said: “When you have a fitted kitchen, it’s great for hiding all the services – all the pipe work and the electrics.

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“You have voids at the back of the kitchen units where you can put all your cables and pipework and things.

“If you’re fitting a free-standing kitchen, you have to be a lot more careful how you plumb it all in and how you run your cables because everything else is exposed.

“A free-standing kitchen might look like an easy option but it adds a lot of complications for how you plumb it in, how you wire it and all those sort of things.”

Mark said a lot of free-standing kitchens are “great” but they do require more space.

“If you want to put freestanding islands and stuff in, you need a lot of space.

“You need a big enough room for free-standing stuff.

“Also, if you get the free-standing stuff that goes around the wall, that is one of the problems with it, you’ve got to work out how you’re going to hide all your plumbing and electrics.”

Free-standing kitchens allow homeowners to mix and match colours, textures and styles.

Having two or three complementary paint shades on different units is a great way to achieve a unique style.

Larder cupboards, free-standing islands and utility units are just some of the ways you can add a free-standing element to your kitchen.

Second-hand free-standing kitchens are a more affordable option if you don’t have thousands to spend on a fitted design.

However, you need to make sure you measure your kitchen accurately and factor in your services before purchase.

Dream Kitchens and Bathrooms with Mark Millar starts 7pm, Tuesday 27th April on Channel 5.

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