With the new year freshly arrived, homeowners are no doubt relaxing from all the holiday gatherings, but also excited for what's in store in the future.

One of the first items on anyone's checklist of tasks to accomplish should be much-needed home renovations. A single-family home has many different rooms and areas in need of a facelift, so it's understandable if homeowners are unsure where to start.

Look no further than the kitchen.

Remodeling the kitchen

The kitchen is one of the most important areas of any house. It's where all the meals are prepared and also acts as an ideal hosting spot whenever guests are over. As such, you can get your friends really talking the next time they come over and see the remodeled space.

Where do you start? First off, you should decide what exactly you're looking to renovate. Set a budget for this project and then see what you can and can't afford, as this will help you make sound decisions.

One area to consider is your appliance setup. If you've always wanted to incorporate stainless a stainless steel stove, refrigerator and dishwasher, now you can.

Design asthetics

If you're looking to change things up with the functionality and overall look of the space, keep in mind that a functional kitchen starts efficient and enough storage. For example, examine your cooking habits. You may find that you need more space whenever you're preparing meals. One possible solution can then be to build an island. Another remedy could be install various easy-access cabinets to store the toaster, coffee pot and other small appliances when they aren't in use, therefore freeing up valuable countertop space.

Change up the lighting

Lighting plays a huge aspect in how a kitchen looks and feels. Bad lighting will make cooking harder and may make not fully highlight the best features of the area. You can solve this by making the switch to LED lighting.

Because of its versatility, LED lighting can be placed just about anywhere in the kitchen. You can use these types of bulbs in overhead fixtures, but also smaller ones under the cabinets and even in pantries. Not only that, but you'll also save on your energy. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, LED light bulbs are currently some of the most efficient lighting sources and will last homeowner's years compared to regular incandescent bulbs.

Examine everything else

From the backsplash to the colors, you have to put careful thought into the renovation of your kitchen. If you're tired of the same old designs, consider using some funky backsplashes that will add character to the kitchen, as highlighted by HGTV. You can mix metallic tiles with numerous finishes.

The smart kitchen

Something else to consider when renovating the kitchen: smart home automation. While smart thermostats control your heating, you can use automated lighting to control your kitchen's lighting source. Even some appliances are built with the ability to connect to your smartphone and provide accurate measurements and information.

Even digital assistants, such as the Amazon Echo, can help when you need to know the exact measurements of a recipe, according to Fortune. You can always just have the device around so you can tell it to play your favorite cooking music, too.

To help ring in the new year, create a checklist of renovations you'd like to complete. The kitchen is an ideal place to start, as there are many facets you can upgrade to help make cooking easier and more enjoyable. Your kitchen will also be a topic of conversation if it undergoes a dramatic facelift. After your renovation, don't forget to have a home inspection to ensure everything works properly after an extensive overhaul.