Ted Stumpf
Ted Stumpf, Windermere Napa Valley PropertiesPhone: (707) 246-9825
Email: [email protected]

Kitchen Islands Explained

by Ted Stumpf 10/02/2022

Kitchen islands have been popular in modern homes for decades. The appeal of the open-concept kitchen creates a need for more counter space while still keeping an open and inviting feel. There are many types of kitchen islands and different ways to implement them in your own space. If you’re thinking of adding a kitchen island as part of a remodel or new home build, here are the basic types to know:

Rolling Cart Island

A rolling cart island is a convenient and versatile way to add more usable space and storage to your kitchen. Rolling carts are small and make for great prep or serving areas. The wheels make them easy to move to any part of the kitchen if needed, so in smaller kitchens, many opt for keeping them against a wall when not in use. Rolling carts can come in a variety of styles with features like open shelving, drawers, towel hangers, butcher-block counters and more.

Non-Portable Island

Similar in size to a rolling cart, a small, non-portable kitchen island provides the same prep space and functionality as a permanent fixture in the kitchen. They provide enough room for basic tasks and storage but often come with flip-up table leaves to increase surface area. These look much more like built-in kitchen islands than carts but are similarly inexpensive and don’t take up a lot of space.

Island Table

You can use a table as a kitchen island if you have the room. Many homeowners opt for tall, narrow tables similar to a breakfast bar rather than square or round tables. Island tables are perfect for food prep, serving meals or setting up a party buffet. Depending on the type of table you use, there may or may not be built-in storage, so keep that in mind when making your decision.

Cabinet With Countertop

Some kitchen islands consist of a couple of base cabinets and a piece of countertop. These islands use the same cabinets and countertops as the rest of your kitchen and make for a cohesive look. The cabinets may have doors, drawers or a mixture of both, while providing a sizable amount of storage. Because you must affix this type of island to the floor, it is considered officially “permanent” according to electrical codes.

Fully Integrated Island

Fully integrated kitchen islands have plumbing and electricity built in. Some have a second sink in addition to the main kitchen sink. Many of these islands also include a gas or electric range. These islands are expensive and difficult to install because they require a lot of extra work to connect the water and electrical power. However, they are highly functional and add great value to a home.

These are just the basic kitchen islands you’ll see available through builders and home improvement resources. Consider the options carefully to find out which is best for your kitchen.

About the Author

Ted Stumpf

Ted draws energy and joy from building synergetic relationships with his Clients. Ted's nature is graciously gregarious and persevering; he's honest; and he's been dedicated to a substantial list of clientele throughout his 25 years in the hospitality business and almost two years as a REALTOR. His passion is creating a sincere, successful relationship with people.

Ted grew up in a family of Realtors in central Indiana, earned a degree in economics and philosophy from the University of Notre Dame, and jumped into all aspects of the restaurant business. His ensuing hospitality career path eventually led him into the Event Management Sales & Service role in hotels and quickly guided him to Los Angeles, San Francisco, and finally to a luxury resort in the Napa Valley, where he, his husband, and their dog have resided for almost a decade now.  

The irony is not lost on Ted that his ‘growth’ journey has culminated in“living happily ever after” in an agricultural area with a small-town feel and sense of community strikingly reminiscent of his youth…and as a REALTOR nonetheless!