A big kitchen renovation is one of the costliest (and most cost-effective) improvements you can make to your home. Perhaps you’ve heard the expression “kitchens sell houses.” If it’s true that a beautiful and functional kitchen will help you sell your home, it’s also true that certain passé trends could hinder your sale. If you’re undertaking a new kitchen renovation, take care to steer clear of these trends to keep your kitchen from looking dated before you even break it in.

Over-the-Range Microwave

Saving by installing the microwave over the range has been standard kitchen protocol for years. But that practice is on its way out. As homebuyers begin to favor universal design principles, keeping necessities accessible for the entire family becomes ever more important. Consider moving the microwave to under-the-counter nooks and drawers instead.

Kitchen Desk

Putting a desk in the kitchen was all the rage for about a decade, because after all, most family life does revolve around the kitchen. The problem is that a kitchen desk just ends up stacked with papers and clutter that you don’t want to see. Pass on the desk, and relegate household business to the home office.

Brass Hardware

Trend reports claim that this is the year for metal. While that may be, bright brass hardware is out. Luckily, swapping out hardware is a fairly simple and inexpensive way to update a kitchen’s appearance. Go with brushed or satin nickel, which looks much more current.

Distressed Cabinets

Distressed and glazed cabinet finishes are a fixture in many a country kitchen. While this style of cabinet rose in popularity over the last decade, it’s now falling out of fashion. When choosing finishes for a cabinet replacement choose more modern looks, whether crisp paint colors or clean wood tones.

Farmhouse Sinks

It once seemed that homeowners would never tire of the throwback charm of the farmhouse sink, yet you’ll rarely see one installed in a kitchen renovation today. Stick with stainless steel, which will always be practical and in style

Faux Finishes

Many faux finishes are now on the wane. Today, simplicity reigns supreme. If you’re updating your kitchen, ditch the complicated treatments and go for fresh paint in bold or neutral tones—even a clean wallpaper design will do.

Tiny Backsplash

Minimal backsplashes are out, and for good practical reasons. Spills and splatters don’t necessarily have good aim. A ceramic tile or glass backsplash that goes all the way from counter to cabinets is much easier to keep clean and looking nice.

Skipping Window Treatments

Keeping windows open and unfettered by shades or curtains has been a trend for several years – mimicking the urban style of loft living. But the trade off for this chic style is a complete lack of privacy and contending daily with the constant glare of unfiltered sun. Luckily, this is a trend that’s easy to reverse. There are lots of simple, minimalist window treatments that will keep your windows uncluttered while serving their important practical purpose.