An HGTV star helps a couple fund a new, rural lifestyle and make the most of a small kitchen.

Celebrating its 10th season, Income Property finds Scott McGillivray on the road, helping homeowners renovate the vacation rentals of their dreams in a four-episode special edition called “Destination Payoff.”

On one stop, contractor McGillivray guides Rebecca, a food-truck owner, and Stew, a painter, who have left the big city for life in the country. McGillivray gives the couple two options: convert their freestanding art gallery to a rental apartment or build a B&B within their home. Their decision, which will be revealed in the April 9 episode, led to a kitchen facelift.

Ahead of the show’s premiere, The Kit editor Eric Vellend spoke with McGillivray about the challenges of designing a small kitchen.

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You weren’t given much room to work with in the kitchen. What are some tricks to making the most of a small space?

It wasn’t a wide kitchen, so we tried to keep everything streamlined. A great tip for small kitchens is to maximize your vertical space. We did some open shelving to avoid overwhelming the room (and also help show off the original brick), but we also did tall, narrow shelving next to the fridge as well as a large cabinet above it. For any small kitchen, start with your fridge, stove and sink locations and build around those elements.

Is the dining table meant to double as a counter when necessary?

Absolutely. We chose a great dining table that not only fit the look of the space, but that was extremely durable. We knew this table had to play double duty, so we went with something fairly large with regular chairs on one side and stools that could tuck away on the kitchen side.

A long bar runs almost the length of the kitchen. What else can you hang on it besides dishtowels?

You can also add hooks for utensils and mugs, small storage caddies for miscellaneous items like sponges, and even a hanging dish rack. This helps keep small items off the counter to keep that space as clear as possible for food prep.

What kind of considerations do you have to make with a kitchen if the owners plan to run a B&B from their home?

Think functional, practical, sturdy for all elements of the kitchen, as well as things that are easy to clean. You need your kitchen to work for you, and not the other way around.

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For the big reveal, tune in to HGTV Canada, April 9 at 9:30 p.m. ET/PT for Income Property: Destination Payoff

Written by: Eric Vellend
Photography supplied by: HGTV Canada