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Kitchen cabinets-quote that almost gave me a heart attack!

So I just received a quote for my new kitchen cabinets - $38000!!!!!
I had to sit down for this one, just couldn't believe it. Are cabinets that expensive nowadays?
It's based on about 42 feet, cherry, most of top cabinets will have clear glass (french door type style). I didn't ask for anything unusual, they included a few of these pullout drawers and an appliance garage.
Please tell me if this sounds like what people charge out there. I am getting ready to call another cabinet maker, but in the meantime please give me your input.

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  1. Time to whip out the Ikea catalog??

    3 Replies
    1. re: Sarah

      We redid our kitchen a year ago in all Ikea. We went with glass doors, extra tall 40" wall cabinets, cherry doors (but laminate sides), and it was about $5000 uninstalled for our 15X15 kitchen, including the island. The installation was not fun but freed up money for our emerald pearl gorgeous granite that I love. So much. So very much.

      1. re: yamalam

        We did Ikea kitchen cabinets about five years ago and love them. We're getting ready to do a major remodel on a second home and there's no doubt we'll do Ikea again. Ours were less than yours but our kitchen is smaller and we didn't do as many bells and whistles as you did.

        1. re: c oliver

          Since this thread got a bump, I thought I'd followup on our second Ikea kitchen. Love it even more - mainly, I guess cause it's a bigger kitchen. Our first one is not about seven years old and the only boo-boos are a couple of scrapes that I caused. And the good news is that for a small amount (I'm remembering $60?) I can replace a door panel. Here's a picture of the new one.

          ETA: Two things. One is that I just noticed that these photos show the kitchen before the trim pieces below the doors were added. Also this kitchen, and you're missing about six plus feet more of upper and lower cabinets cost $3K including the farm sink. Granted, we took advantage of a couple of sale promos but they offer those all the time.

    2. I did my kitchen in stock Merilat cabinets about 10 years ago in maple an I spent over $10000 . Mind you, at this price I got solid fronts and laninate sides, so If you are going with anything custom and solid wood throughout, you are probably in the right ballpark.

      1. We did a mixture of stock and custom cabinets in maple 3 years ago. All wood but the bases were thinner like 3/8" not 1/2" as I expected and was lead to believe. They were not solid maple but plywood with maple fronts. This I was aware of. The cost was only a little less than what you quoted for similar linear feet. It was nearly double what the quote was 5 years prior. They really look great but the instillation was not without incident. I know they did a lot to customize the stock cabinets but the cost of remodeling was a real shocker. The contractor we used was in line with prices we got from other contractors. Oh and beware of remodel creep. It's real scary and potentially dangerous your health and wallet

        1. Sounds about right for prices here. I assume that includes tear out for the old cabinets and installation of the new. No idea where you are but there are almost always local cabinet makers that are far more reasonable than the national brands and many are better quality to boot. Take your time and shop around. Have you considered re-facing? Add another 8k or so for granite plus new plumbing. Adds up quick. Id say average kitchen remodel is 50-60k.

          1. It's the Cherry that's killing ya. Check into Maple with a cherry stain.

            4 Replies
            1. re: Eric in NJ

              Agree- Just did a pretty sizeable kitchen in an expensive area. Got solid maple cabinets w/cherry stain. Cabinet costs were like $13K. Absolutely gorgeous.

              1. re: Eric in NJ

                CARIB! Woohoo!!!

                Sorry for the hijack...back to the regularly scheduled program.

                1. re: Eric in NJ

                  From what I have heard good maple is getting tough to find , driving costs way up.

                  1. re: BIGGUNDOCTOR

                    Good hardwood of any type is getting tough to find and prices on cherry, walnut, quarter sawn oak, hard maple, etc. are all very high right now and I doubt will decline any time soon. Cherry and Walnut are in many cases over $8 a board foot. We saved some money on our kitchen by using rift sawn oak rather than quartere sawn, which is also near $8. Fortunately the boxes are plywood with hardwood veneer, although that's gone up in price as well.

                2. Lots of questions to ask ........ are these stock or custom cabinets? What is the interior? Type and number of shelves? Design of doors (complicated woodwork or plain & simple)? Is this a contractor price or Suzy Homemaker (full retail) quote?

                  When we were building our home, our whole house cabinet quote varied by an astounding amount of money from one person/company to another and each was quoting from the same set of plans & requirements. We even had one (bandit!) revise the quote upward by $10K saying "when you're building this kind of house you have to expect to pay more". Needless to say, he did not get the job.

                  FYI: looooong story but we had nine different quotes (!) and did not take the lowest but took the one we felt most comfortable with. He was mid-pack, completely custom and six years later, I couldn't be happier. Good Luck on the project.

                  1. Thanks for all your input! First thing this morning I went to Home Depot as they carry the Kraft Maid line. They gave me a ballpark figure of $6000. Now, that doesn't seem possible. I just know that when it comes to ordering and choosing specific cupboards it will triple in price(at least). They even charge $100 just for coming over to measure! I don't think I will bother with them.

                    21 Replies
                    1. re: polish_girl

                      again, you have not been specific enough. did you ask for the Kraftmaid with plywood boxes? or were they the standard particle board. what hardware did you ask for.

                      in any event you now see the range of what is available.

                      1. re: KaimukiMan

                        They only asked me what wood and finish I want, everything else in the cabinet seemed to be standard.

                        1. re: polish_girl

                          they have a couple of grades. make sure to tell them you want plywood boxes, no particle board. some of the sales people are less than knowledgeable. i know it seems like a pain in the tail, but for the amount of money you will be spending (somewhere between 10 and 40 thousand dollars) it behooves you to do some research. The kraftmaid website is pretty good.

                          1. re: polish_girl

                            We went with Kraft-Maid but bought them through "Cabinet Factory" they carry the better quality cabinets. Be careful with Home Depot, my son got his through there and they don't even print their logo on them, and they are of lesser quality than ours. Ours have the Kitchen-Maid stamp in every drawer.

                            1. re: Eric in NJ

                              We bought our Kraft Maid cabinets through Home Depot and they are stamped Kraft-Maid in every drawer...

                              1. re: flourgirl

                                MAybe they sell different grades. I know his don't and they are not as well made as mine.

                                1. re: Eric in NJ

                                  It's been about 9 years since we had our kitchen done, so I don't really remember what the deal was at that time, but these cabinets seem to be very well made given the price point. We own a 1960s ranch, and it's a great little house but it did not warrant spending the huge sums of money that people have to spend on high end cabinets these days. We've been very happy with these cabinets so far. (And the whole kitchen cost us $3800 for the cabinets at that time...and my kitchen is actually very large for a house this size.) The doors and drawer fronts are all solid maple, the drawers are all dove tail joints, the pull out drawers work smoothly and fully extend - and the one time we had a problem with some of the hardware in one of the pull out drawers, Kraft Maid stood behind their warranty and immediately sent out new parts. Oh, and one of the front panels cracked on one of the doors - again, one phone call and I had new doors on my doorstep. No questions asked. Not too bad for $3800 I'd say.

                                  1. re: flourgirl

                                    I wish mine had only cost $3800. Ours was more like $11,000 un-installed the counters were another $6000.

                                    1. re: Eric in NJ

                                      Our price was un-installed too. We acted as our own GC and hired a local guy to do the install. The counters (arctic white corian) were under $3000. I don't have a lot of counter space - the kitchen is large but it was originally 2 rooms and I kept the original dining room as an eat-in area with a breakfast bar, a big hutch and one of my rollaway butcher block topped carts, which works great for me when I need extra counter space. The same guy who installed the cabinets installed the tile floor. He did it for $850, which was pretty good, considering the vendor we bought the tile from sent out a contractor who wanted over $2000.

                                      1. re: Eric in NJ

                                        I think the original poster said 38 THOUSAND, not 38 hundred. There were 3 zeros after the 38.

                                        1. re: oakjoan

                                          Convolution rules!! I think Eric's "$3800" was referring to flourgirl's "$3800."

                              2. re: polish_girl

                                We just got a quote on Kraft Maid cabinets out of plywood and it came in @ $7,200 uninstalled. We like the quality and are going with it.

                            2. re: polish_girl

                              I hope for 38k the initial quote was for much higher end cabinets than Kraft Maid with or without plywood. Those are just standard cabinets and they are not even at the high end of that.

                              1. re: polish_girl

                                DO NOT USE HOME DEPOT! After we used them, a nightmare, we found out contractors make a good living correcting the crap HD does.

                                1. re: Janet

                                  I agree that I wouldn't use Home Depot Contractors. They are over-priced and there doesn't seem to be any quality control there. But we have purchased almost all our Anderson windows and sliding doors from them, our refrigerator, our kitchen cabinets and laminate flooring in the sun room and we have had absolutely no problems whatsoever. (And all of those things have been installed for three years or longer, some going back nine.)

                                  1. re: Docsknotinn

                                    You can special order higher grade produt from HD they stock the lesser grade to have lower prices. I know because we bought our kitchen faucets there and everything on the rack wa lousy, then we saw the special order catalog and found the exact Kohler we were looking for. It wasn't cheap but it was less than the plumbing supply house.

                                    1. re: Eric in NJ

                                      Yes that's true but cabinets, unlike faucets come in the exact same model with different components (plywood, particle board, different faces etc). This makes it very difficult at times to shop and you have to really pay attention. The same can be said of HD about granite. They use a major granite contractor here but if you go through HD you wind up with all the odd slabs of the style you picked. Granite varies greatly in the same pattern from lot to lot and I've seen some terrible work by HD and it's the same company that did our kitchen (not through HD) but I was able to pick my slabs. I buyproducts frequently from the HD but would never use their contractors. They are just gettting the lowest price they can on labor and then charging you top dollar for labor and you probabbly wont even know what contractor you hired. Not a great position to be in for something as expensive as cabinets and counter tops.

                                    2. re: flourgirl

                                      Hi Folks - Please keep the discussion focused on kitchen specific items. We know that some kitchens have windows, but that topic is really too far afield for Chowhound. We've removed some discussion of windows from this thread.


                                  2. re: polish_girl

                                    Polish Girl.
                                    Home Depot aren't the only ones that carry the Kraft Maid Line. If you really like that line go directly to the Kraft Maid website and ask them for the names of dealers in your area. That's what I did and have had 2 different franchise dealers come to my house free of charge to make suggestions and quote.

                                    1. re: polish_girl

                                      They refund the $100 measuring fee if you order from them. I have a small condo kitchen and will take delivery of my Kraft Maid cabinets next week via Home Depot. I upgraded to all wood, no fiberboard, with cherry fronts, 10 "boxes" (cabinets) plus some extra features---two significant discounts, free hardware upgraded to stainless steel, free sink cabinet, plus a rebate---order added up to $6800 but with the discounts this became $4300. BTW another place I talked to wanted $250 to come out and measure and this was NOT applicable to an order. The young kitchen saleswoman had a degree in Architectural Design and I assume was working at HD because of the economy but she was terrific, very professional and knowledgeable and she was pulling discounts out of that computer like a magician pulling bunnies out of a tall silk hat. As I say I have not yet seen the cabinets but the deal I got was unbeatable.

                                    2. Cabinets cost $1000 per linear foot, installed, for a product like cherry, and it sounds as though you were working with a custom millwork shop. For products like Kraftmaid, Quakermade, etc, that number is probably around $700 per linear foot. Sounds like you got a good deal.

                                      4 Replies
                                      1. re: Felixnot

                                        We did not pay anywhere near this amount for our beautiful solid cherry cabinets from a local mill. It pays to shop around!

                                        1. re: Felixnot

                                          Whuh? Are you sure you don't have an extra zero in there?

                                          We're planning our kitchen remodel. We don't have detailed plans yet, but our cabinetmaker, who's done extensive (and extremely high-quality) custom work in other parts of the house, says to count on $50-100 per linear foot, installed, for custom-made cherry cabinets with plywood carcases and shaker-style doors. What gives?

                                          1. re: alanbarnes

                                            The $700-$1000 number includes upper and lower. In any event, it is unlikely that you are getting a quality product for your $100 plf. Without knowing what you are buying the numbers can differ quite a bit.

                                            Are you getting metal pins or plastic for your adjustable shelves? Are you getting full extension slides for your drawers? Are your boxes melamine or birch or maple? Are the vertical sections of your boxes half or three quarter inch? Are you getting particle board shelves or plywood, half inch, three quarter or five quarter? Are you getting hardwood edges or hardwood tape for your edges? Are you getting dovetails on your drawers or pins? Concealed hinges, exposed hinges, flush overlay doors, inset doors?

                                            That's what the money buys you. It's the difference between going to Ikea or to Woodmode. It really doesn't matter that your cabinetmaker knows how to build what appears to be high end cabinets. It only matters whether those are the cabinets you are getting.

                                            By the way, if he is giving you all the quality you need for that price, you may want to share his name with the board. It would pay to ship his goods to any location.

                                            1. re: Felixnot

                                              Metal pins, full extension slides, 3/4" birch boxes and shelves (presumably edge-taped), dovetailed drawers, concealed hinges, overlay doors. The estimate was for upper or lower cabinets, not both.

                                              Once our plans are drawn up I'll get a formal bid from him and see how the cabinets are spec'd out and how close the price comes to the numbers he was tossing around, then bounce it off the folks here. If it sounds like a good deal I'll be happy to share his name, with the caveat that he has a tiny operation and they're usually swamped, which can have an adverse impact on delivery times. With this guy, patience isn't just a virtue, it's a necessity.

                                        2. I looked on the net for the company that did ours. Their site proudly proclaims that they are the largest installer of Wellborn Cabinets bla, bla, bla. I can't say Wellborn is a great company or a poor company. But it is a starting point for you. Their site has many features that tell you about the construction of their four grades, the design features that you might consider, material used in construction, and location of dealers. It seems to me that just going through this site or another cabinet manufacturer's site would give you a lot of information to help you when dealing with whomever.

                                          1. Without knowing the quality and details the $38k could be a bargain or a rip off.

                                            It is very difficult to compare costs without seeing the actual quote and the cabinet. In general using larger boxes (36" or greater) will be considerably less costly than using smaller boxes. Cabinets w/o drawers or pullouts are less costly than those with. Fancy glass costs more than flat glass. When considering hardwoods, maple or ash can be less costly than cherry, walnut or quarter sawn oak, though depending on the finish the differences in appearance may be subtle or significant.
                                            To a certain extent you get what you pay for -- higher cost cabinets are generally built from higher quality lumber, with better hardware, more durable joinery and better finishes. Thicker plywood is the most dimensionally stable material for cabinets, aand more costly than MDF or lesser plywood -- though not as costly as solid hardwoods -- you have to know where it makes sense to spend more and less.
                                            It is very hard to generalize about the various 'brands' but you have already seen that the "basic" price can very widely and many manufacturers have varied policies on who they'll sell to and how they create "estimates".
                                            It makes a lot of sense to shop in a general way to understand the differences at the various price points/sellers. The "bargain cabinets' are going to have fewer options and more compromises, though some are surprisingly durable.
                                            Once you get comfortable with a narrower price range you can focus on more detailed quotes and consider the possibility of locating a custom cabinet shop -- in many cases this might be a better value, though if you have to do even more homework to ensure they can deliver what they promise.

                                            BTW the $700-$1000 per lineal foot is a very rough ballpark and generally is out of a insurance adjuster's mindset for replacing the entire kitchen cabinets in a newer mid/high quality home. The "designer brands" from Europe and certain US brands can easily top $1500-2000. The most basic cabinets with "sold wood veneer" on exposed surfaces/doors but otherwise constructed of particle board maybe as little $50 -75.

                                            1. You might want to spend some time on the Gardenweb kitchen forum, where things like cabinets and remodeling are discussed in detail. As everyone has indicated, your prices will vary a lot depending on exactly what you are specifying.

                                              I have 25 year old stock cabinets that were made with thick plywood "guts" with solid wood fronts. The plywood has held up perfectly. Quality of drawer glide hardware is a place not to skimp. You can save money if you shop around for the pulls and hinges.

                                              If you don't have a plan yet, I'd pay a designer to do one for you, so you can at least compare apples to apples in terms of the number & type of cabinets, rather than using linear feet.


                                              1. I figured for decent-quality, non-deluxe stock cabinets the price would be about $14,000. So $38,000 for fine custom cabinetry doesn't seem out of line.

                                                1. Hey polish girl, that sounds about right. You went with the most expensive wood and all those uppers having finished interiors and glass are a BIG upgrade. You could lower your price substantially by going down to maple and cutting out some of those glass uppers.

                                                  1. We just got the quote for Kitchen Kraft cabinets for our 11X10 kitchen. It was a joke!
                                                    They quoted on their low end cabinets in cherry with only a couple small glass doors, no fancy moldings, trim or lights. It included a mid quality granite counter top, instalation and the removal of the old cabinets (but not the disposal) They want just under $29000 with taxes. If I wanted to upgrade to solid wood dovetailed drawers with full extention and birch laminate boxes the saleman figured in would be about $35000 with taxes!

                                                    This morning a got a second quote from a small indepentant cabinet maker for custom cherry cabinets with plywood boxes, solid wood dovetail drawers with full extention hardware with taxes and labour at just over $20,000.
                                                    Guess who I'll be following up with!

                                                    The funny thing is my husband got his issue of Money Sense magazine in the mail yesterday. It was all about real estate and investing in your home. One article said "A $20000 budget will get you a 10' X12" kitchen full of neat gear inculding a 48" dual Wolf range, a 21 cubic ft Sub-Zero fridge, a granite counter, a hardwood floor and a built in island! If anyone knows where I can get all that for 20K sign me up!!!!!!

                                                    2 Replies
                                                    1. re: PinkieT

                                                      A lot depends on the actual number of boxes that you'd need and the layout of the kitchen: three wall, four? All covered with new cabinets that could be almost 40 linear feet. That is a lot of boxes.

                                                      Refaced cabinets would be one way to save money. It is actually not a bad option -- if the layout is good and the boxes are solid why throw out everything just to get a new look and overhaul the appliances?

                                                      Granted most people that actually hire somebody like me find out that reface places can't /won't move windows, add new space or getting into complicated re-plumbing situations.

                                                      If you go for $20k/120 sq ft you are talk about $167/sq ft -- not an outrageously low price...

                                                      1. re: PinkieT

                                                        No way, unless your kitchen is already pristine and just needs sprucing up/appliance replacment, and your floor is perfectly level, you need no new electrical outlets or lighting.

                                                        We spent close to that on our kitchen, without new cabinets, without granite, without fancy new appliances...but, we have an old house and there were more important things to worry about, like electrical, lighting, exhaust fan, new sink, dishwasher installation, leveling the appliances...function over form, for the most part. But it's great now.

                                                        Anyway, my point is, if you have a perfect blank slate, maybe it's possible, but any fixes/upgrades would quickly put anyone over the top -- and I think that happens quite a bit once people get into renovating. I hope Money Sense covered that!

                                                      2. Chows, you don't even know how grateful I am for all your input! My kitchen is brand new, so I am starting with a clean slate. The cabinets I was looking for are a cherry wood, plywood boxes. I went to another independent cabinet maker and he quoted me $40000. After that I contacted a kitchen design studio and got a quote for Kraftmaid- they quoted me $25000 (cabinets and installation). I think I will go with them. There was one other thing I like about working with this place-they actually gave me computer drawings with ideas for various drawers and cabinets, specific to my kitchen. Nobody else did, they all said they will do it later. It doesn't make much sense, because what if I decide on something that's not covered by their design and I didn't know about it? Or maybe I reduce the amount of cabinets but the contract was signed, so I may loose money. This way I know exactly what I am paying for. Anyway, it's been quite an ordeal. I hope Kraftmaid has a good reputation out there.....

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: polish_girl

                                                          See, now you've saved enough for some really nice appliances...

                                                        2. 38K? Well, it may be twice as much, or twice as less!
                                                          When in a showroom, all kitchen cabinets look very similar. At the same time the price may vary significantly. There are four major factors which determine the price:
                                                          *The manufacture and the material
                                                          * The quality of the installation
                                                          * Warranties
                                                          *The company which stands behind the entire project.
                                                          This is just like buying a car. Computer Aided Design made it possible that all modern cars look beautiful and cool outside; however, they all have different features, different reliability and different standards for the service. When designing your kitchen, you should think not only of the budget, but also of what you are willing to sacrifice for the price, because in the end, you’ll get what you are paying for.
                                                          Cheap material may fade, chip and pill. Wood can expand or contract and then the doors won’t close. A bad installation can cause damages which are not covered by the manufacture. Good warranties provide only good companies and therefore peace of mind is a part of the purchase.
                                                          When I design kitchens, I believe that along with the chosen material, the customer should always get the best quality, real warranties and 100% guaranteed satisfaction. This is possible by distinguishing between ‘needs’ and ‘wants’. So, this way the final budget should be affordable.

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: Cabinet Designer

                                                            I had a tight budget for a kitchen remodel as I wanted to use a first time home buyer's tax credit. My kitchen is almost 12'X10'. There are 2 12' walls and one 10' wall with a window over the sink on the 10' wall. I had old oak cabinets that needed refinishing and a Jenn Air range that was in desperate need of replacement. But, the thing that really pushed me to NEED to remodel was the old 2-inch tiles and even older grout that was lifting and chipping away in areas. Oh, and the porcelain sink that was stained and yucky. I did go to a Wellborn cabinet vendor and I also price shopped Lowe's Kraft Maid cabinets. My ceilings are 7.5 feet. The only real upgrades I did were upgraded lazy susans and dove-tailed drawers that are soft close. Lowe's came in $2,000 higher for maple cabinets. I was able to get Wellborn Cherry cabinets. Now, they are the lowest end cabinets from the Select series. They do have wood fronts with veneer overlay doors. I am sure they aren't top of the line, but they look nice and should be fine for a couple with no kids. I paid a contractor $500 to pull out the old cabinets, $1000 to re-do the box lighting in the ceiling and put in 6 canned lights and flatten the ceiling out. $500 to do the tear out. $350 for a junk removal company to take most of the junk away. $8600 (with tax) for the cabinets and delivery. $900 for the installation of the cabinets. And, I'm looking at about $2700ish (it might be a little over $3000) for 3cm granite fully installed. I will also have some final refinishing work that will probably cost about $600 for electrical, hooking everything up, refinishing a wall, etc. This is my first real remodel project, so I tried to budget between $12K to $14K. I think that it will be over $15K for the full remodel. There were a lot of things I didn't know to consider when I first started this project. First, I didn't know that electrical outlets would need to be moved. I also didn't know that trash removal would be an added cost. I guess I never really thought about that. I also didn't plan for the ceiling and box lighting to be replaced. I had to repaint some areas. Now, I think that the color of the cabinets and the color of the granite isn't going to work with the paint. I chose to go with a backsplash that wasn't originally quoted because the cost to do full tile for a backsplash would probably be a hassle and cost even more than the $49 installed pricing for the granite backsplash (because I liked full tile up to the cabinet bottoms instead of just 6 inches of tile for a backsplash). I would just recommend always having an extra 20% on hand for a remodel. I think the cabinets will be fine for my home. But, if your kitchen gets hard use with lots of kids running around, I would opt for more durable and sturdy cabinets.

                                                          2. This is way too late to help you but yes that is far too expensive. We are redoing out kitchen from scratch and custom cherry cabinets here (the boxes are frameless plywood but insides and sides are cherry veneer w/ solid cherry doors) would be about $14-15K INSTALLED.

                                                            We are going in a different direction, to use white cabinets, so that our new wood floors, natural stone tiles and stone counter tops will really shine, with the white cabinets framing everything. Like you, we initially wanted cherry cabinets but then they might not work as well with all the other elements. But with white cabinets everything works perfectly and we can choose a really dramatic wood floor that will shine, and not have to worry about how the cabinets might or might not really work with all the other elements. In the end, we are going with Ultracraft Frameless, as they are reasonable at about $10K installed, and have all the advanced high-end features we wish for.

                                                            I hope that your kitchen turned out exactly as you wanted!

                                                            2 Replies
                                                            1. re: PepinRocks

                                                              I have a very common 10ft x 10 ft kitchen except there is a peninsula on one side like a bar seating area that's 46" counter top. Total counter top area needed is only 50 sq ft. I have about 25 linear ft of cabinets.

                                                              I have lots of time on my hand at home not working so been doing a lot of research and enquirers on Craigslist because my 1st kitchen remodel I was a complete rookie and hired the 1st guy that gave me a estimate...big mistake jack.

                                                              This time around I'm getting at least 4 bids and still have not found some one I feel comfortable with that reasonable with the price. Go on craigslist people and you'll save at least 50% on cabinets. These cabinets are all solid wood with self closing just like the big name brands. I can tell you all this...say what you will but these cabinets from china are 10x better constructed than Ikea.

                                                              My cabinets which are the Shaker maple came to $2700/w tax and that includes a lazy susan, a 9" spice rack, med crown molding, toe kicks, scribes, fillers

                                                              My counter tops is one huge slab I selected from one of many granite slab yards 135"x74" which is about 65 sq ft which is well over my 50 sq ft. The color is Astoria @ $11/sq ft. it's very nice, not the speckles peppery cheap looking kind. Total installation incl under mount 16g single zero radius bowl 32" and hole cut outs is $3200.

                                                              Had I went with Pr-fab it would have only been $2400 and they would template and come back the next day and install it. The only reason I had to bypass the pre-fab route is because of the peninsula.

                                                              Then to demo, install the cabinets, hook up the plumbing, install a wall range hood, back splash, any dry wall/touch up paint is $2600.

                                                              So total for everything is $8500. Do a little home work folks and avoid the big companies..they all wanted over 10K and some said my teeny kitchen would take 2 weeks. They take 2 weeks is because they hop around from your job to the next and the next. Run as far as you can from these guys.

                                                              Get the smaller guys that are fully licenced and bonded and they'll give you a much better bid and their crew will stay with your project until completion. Just a matter of time and patient, don't do this like you have some timeline or rush.

                                                              When these contractors know you're in some kind of rush or desperate then they smell your weakness like a shark smells blood and go in for the kill. Don't force it, take your sweet time because there's a ton of good guys out there you just have to have an open mind and look. When they say things like "this his how things are done" or play the silly games after you show interest like "I'm extremely busy" when you try to comm with them just say next thank you.

                                                              1. re: zoey67


                                                                I have a fairly new Samsung french door fridge so the only new appliance is the slide in range and DW. Pacific sales will deliver and install for free as part of their package price my 30" Viking D3 slide in range and Bosch dish washer.

                                                                The Viking was $3100, Bosch DW $600 all with free haul away, delivery and installation. This will be done when my counter tops and cabinets are all in.

                                                                I also watch just about every DIY and HGTV shows like 10 grand in your hand, kitchen crashers, renovation reality, flipping homes, etc those contractors can't tell me it takes 2 days to demo out my 10ftx10ft kitchen from a 900 sq ft home. I tell them hell no, maybe for those 4-5k sq ft million dollar homes.

                                                                And I have a friend who was lucky to be selected to crash his kitchen and it took them 3 days so I know it's very much possible just as long as the granite guys can fabricate quickly for the slab but pre fab is the best way to go...no one will be able to distinguish if it's pre fab or not. "some" will tell you Oh pre fab is cheap china crap only so they can make more money on fabricating slabs from their yard. They're just like any other money grubbing mechanic or dentist telling you have to do a root canal or porcelain inlays.

                                                            2. That's a fair price. Custom cabinets average around $300.00 a lineal foot just for the cabinets.That's upper and the lower cabinets. Now add your countertop, granite, quartz, corian, etc.. at $300.00 plus a lineal foot.I'm a Contractor in California. Now add labor.

                                                              15 Replies
                                                              1. re: emglow101

                                                                Go for Ikea, do it yourself, and spend $3K.

                                                                1. re: c oliver

                                                                  I was pricing cabinets for our 1900 house about 5 years ago. I was shocked enough what they were charging for the crap they were selling at Home Depot that I asked my wife if I could just build them myself. It was an odd thing to say, because I'd never handled a power tool in my life, but I started researching, studying, acquiring tools, and over time I did it. It took over two years, but our cabinets are totally custom, 3/4" ply boxes with beautiful reclaimed cherry that I milled myself, and waaaaaay better built than anything else I looked at. I knew I saved some dough but had no idea that custom cabinetry was that expensive.

                                                                  Anyway, all that said, if I were to do it again, I'd probably just buy some Ikea cabinets next time. They're fine, they look great, and you can have it done in a weekend or two.

                                                                  1. re: TheCarrieWatson

                                                                    Wow, I'm very impressed with your skill...and confidence :) One thing I really like is Ikea's kitchen design software (which could be used for non-Ikea but don't tell them I said that!). Click and drag, 3D and bird's eye views. Very fun and very good.

                                                                    1. re: c oliver

                                                                      I used that software quite a bit when I was trying to decide how to plan and lay out our cabinets. It's funny, I think it was my *lack* of confidence that helped me pull it off. I was so afraid of making mistakes that I studied, measured, and thought through everything so completely that by the time I started making cuts they were perfect. I was so excited when I made my first faceframe! Anyway, it was a fun project but like I said, I think the Ikea cabinets are an excellent option and a great value.

                                                                      1. re: TheCarrieWatson

                                                                        You may have the same kind of brain as my husband. I say it's cause his undergrad degree is in accounting :) (I also say that I married him in spite of that!) He will stand and study something and will usually eventually figure it out. As an aside one of our daughters and SIL are househunting in the SF Bay Area so you can just imagine what a 'starter home' there costs. We've offered to buy and build them an Ikea kitchen and they're totally on board.

                                                                  2. re: c oliver

                                                                    Never Ikea, it feels and looks so cheap. You can almost punch through the doors...you can do better with price and quality from tons of listings on Craigslist. They all offer pretty much the same cabinets...solid wood doors with plywood drawers and self-closing

                                                                    I got the Shaker in Beech with a lazy susan, 9" spice rack for $2800 incl tax. If I pay cash, then its only 2500 no tax. They come fully assembled, some places your contractor will assemble them.

                                                                    1. re: zoey67

                                                                      zoey, have you ever used Ikea cabinets? I cook A LOT and my kitchen takes a beating. Seven years into this one kitchen and everything, except for where I scratched a door, looks and works like brand new. Maybe you carry a little prejudice that if something doesn't cost a lot then it's not good quality. Ikea kitchens rate super high worldwide. Our newest Ikea kitchen has about 20 linear feet, upper and lower cabinets, a peninsula, 3 lazy susans, 8 pull-out heavy wire baskets/shelves and a farm sink. Oh, yeah, and those automatic closer thingies. $3K. If there were anything subpar about the first kitchen we certainly wouldn't have done another.

                                                                      1. re: c oliver

                                                                        Well ok, in all fairness the Ikea cabinets I used were with my previous kitchen I had done up in LA back in 99. Perhaps Ikea has listened to their customers and spruced the quality. But back then they look really nice in the showroom, but when I had them installed in my kitchen they were so flimsy.

                                                                        You have 20 lin ft..I have 26.5 lin ft for $2680. Ok let me ask you this, are your Ikea cab solid wood with plywood shelves with no particle board.

                                                                        1. re: zoey67

                                                                          The cabinet doors are solid wood and the box and shelves are MDF which is MUCH stronger than plain particle board. I have a ridiculous amount of kitchen "stuff" and I've worried occasionally that I'm overloading a shelf but there's been no bowing, splitting or cracking. I've had plywood bookshelve bow in the past. And don't forget that $3k included the farm sink.

                                                                          1. re: c oliver

                                                                            Is that 1/2 or 3/4" MDF? They must weigh a ton! If I'm not mistaken, Norm Abram did a neat multi-part series where he built an entire kitchen's worth of cabinets. He used MDF for the boxes and paint grade wood (poplar) for the frames to save $$. It's a completely viable construction option. I almost went that route but found 11 sheets of extremely high quality 3/4 cherry ply on Craigslist for 500.00 so I went with that.

                                                                            1. re: TheCarrieWatson

                                                                              Just measured; it's 3/4". As you may be aware, the top cabinets hang off a metal rail which I understand is a more European method. Bob would assemble the box w/o the shelves and he and I would lift them into place and I'd put my shoulder underneath to support while he put the screws in place. We're in our mid60s so it's within almost anyone's ability.

                                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                                Yeah, that is a cleat system. Great way to hang cabinets!

                                                                            2. re: c oliver

                                                                              Sure, MDF is better than particle board, but it's a far cry from good hardwood plywood. MDF jsut doesn't have the mechanical strength of plywood nor does it hold nails or screws as well as plywood. It's common in cabinets and I've used MDF core plywood to hold down costs rather than use veneer core plywood, when making some built in pieces. However, when I made that decision, I knew I was selling the house in a few months.

                                                                              1. re: mikie

                                                                                True. I've built tons of jigs and stuff for my shop w/mdf and confirmat screws & glue and have never had a single failure, FWIW. And that stuff gets knocked around plenty. Anyway, it's academic at this point anyway. The OP probably solved her cabinet quandary long ago!

                                                                          2. re: c oliver

                                                                            Yes, about half-way into my project I went over to my buddy's house, which he'd just outfitted with Ikea's cabinets. I was a little envious in a way. I have no regrets about building my own - it's certainly one of the most ambitious things I've ever done, and I learned a ton from it - and I know my cabinets are better quality than Ikea's, but if I'd known at the beginning about Ikea cab's I'd probably have gone for that in a minute.

                                                                    2. Emglow is right. I am a Master Carpenter and began as an apprentice under an Italian furniture maker when I was 15. That was 30 years ago. The problem nowadays is that the term "custom" really applies to cabinetry that is built by a professional, and manufacturers of cabinets don't really do custom, nor does Ikea. Don't get me wrong, they all have great products and Ikea especially has created a product for the DIY market that is pretty amazing, but it is apples and oranges. Almost all cabinet manufacturers, including Ikea work from a 3" increment basis. All cabinets are 12", 15", 18", wide and so on, and they use fillers to make up the difference in required spans. Custom cabinet makers will build cabinets to the exact dimensions of the space, sometimes just for symmetry, and it is common to have drawer banks on either side of a stove that are 22-1/2" wide because that is simply what works in the space. The materials are the biggest difference. Manufacturers use particle board, melamine, 1/2" cabinet sides instead of 3/4" material. Finishes are not as hearty as custom cabinetry, drawers wont be dove tailed, hardware is substandard, and a lot of time what looks like real wood isn't. I have done kitchens for well over $100,000, but every cabinet was hand made from select solid wood, every molding was handmade as well as the doors and drawer fronts. The drawers were solid wood, dove tailed with self closing, soft closing undermount slides. The LED lighting was completely hidden, illuminating each work space perfectly. The finish was from Italy and you could lay a cigar down inside of a cabinet and when it burned out you could wipe the "stain" away. It was basically high end furniture in a kitchen, and to be honest, I had made a 20% profit when done. Way less than manufactured cabinets make when sold. I did have the same satisfaction, though, that another gentleman had here in this posting, spending 2 years building his own kitchen out of quality materials and ending up with a custom product.
                                                                      The key in cabinet pricing is comparing apples to apples, knowing a lot about the product and materials, and understanding the methods of cabinet construction. For the typical homeowner, this isn't easy knowledge to come by, there is a lot of smoke and mirrors with cabinet makers and contractors in general. Manufactured cabinets usually have a 50% profit margin, while custom cabinet makers have to accept way less just to try to be competitive.
                                                                      Essentially, you will get a much better return on your money and increase the value of your home way more installing custom cabinets. Most people only see the outside skin of cabinetry. That is seeing the cost of the cabinetry, not the value of the work. I always recommend value over cost.

                                                                      1. We build custom kitchen cabinets...high end and bolieve me the price you got is really fair. Mostly in NJ we chargr around 1200 per foot to make mullion doors is more labor than with standard doors/actually is custom kitchens there is no standards. Material cost goes every day higher and nobody ask us we like it or not finally it end up on costumer like you. Custom wotk is exclusive work for exclusive people. For kitchen cabinets made of cherry with frames for linear footage of 41 will cost around 10k. Just think how muvh of labor needs yo be in it. The profits are not like all people think

                                                                        1. I did my kitchen last year. There are about 12 feet of lower cabinets with wood doors. Maybe 8 feet of upper cabinets. Two of the uppers are double sided with glass doors. Glass doors cost a fortune. The place where I got my cabinets (Just Cabinets) suggested that I order the two just prepped for glass, buy the glass at a big box store and have the contractor install the glass. That worked like a charm and saved about $1,200. that being said my Kraft Maid cabinets (without installation) cost $13,000 with minimal bells and whistles. The cabinets I chose are maple with white paint. The white finish did add to the cost.
                                                                          Good luck!

                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                          1. re: Fiona

                                                                            I recently priced KraftMaid semi custom from Home Depot vs. custom cabinetry from a local cabinet maker I got a reference for. Did this because a lot of forums found custom cheaper and better and that's been my experience.

                                                                            I am getting EXACTLY what I want and much more of it (a very large mirror frame and a second recessed dall medicine cabinet all with very wide trim) along with a 60" vanity for the same money than the vanity alone was going to cost from Home Depot. I've seen it built and it's all beautifully made, just waiting to be sprayed. I'm also getting soft close door and drawers, a built in trash basket, slide out deep drawer in the center of the cabinet. Lots more.

                                                                            I say go custom for quality and savings.

                                                                          2. Holy cow. Unless your household is raking in over $150K-$200K/yr (in Iowa's cost of living), I'd go with something else. Remember, you can always stain a cherry color onto anything. Cheap gunstocks are made of beech and not walnut -- Something to consider, yet I know absolute zero about cabinets. We live in your average 3 bedroom ranch house built in 2005, so the cabinets aren't anything special but they are solid wood. The species of wood they are, I haven't a clue.

                                                                            1. That is exactly why the cabinets I inherited are just fine! Some paint and new hardware and we'll be good.

                                                                              1. We just our kitchen in Wellborn about a month ago we found this new dealer in the area . Our price was 23,000 for the cabinets 27 cabinets with custom island. We did cherry wood inset doors duble stack high cabinets with a custom mantle hood ,9 reeded glass doors and the draw bases had touch to open installed , it did take 5 weeks but it was well worth it . They also finished the end cabinets with side function doors witch is a nice touch. It all depends on the dealer and if they want to over charge you.

                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                1. re: Longislandchris

                                                                                  I live on Long Island, too, and as I type this, an independent cabinet maker is installing my custom vanity, mirror and recessed wall cabinet (with electric GFI inside for rechargeables).

                                                                                  I could visit and see work in progress along the way, too.

                                                                                  Go independent, not brand name. You'll be supporting someone who lives in your community, have a better experience, get exactly what you want how you want it for less money.

                                                                                2. I will take delivery of my Ikea boxes (all 269 of them) for my kitchen on Sunday. Cabinets for our medium-sized kitchen (8.5 X 4 ft island, 14 linear feet of base cabinets, and a floor-to ceiling wall of cabinets that is 10 feet long), and with their most expensive door fronts (Abstrakt), cost $9,000. We will do the assembly and placement ourselves, but we like that sort of thing. This frees up the $$ for a quartzite countertop and the new benchmark bosch appliances.

                                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: lazy_lurker

                                                                                    we just had our ikea cabinets installed. can't wait to see your results.

                                                                                    1. re: lazy_lurker

                                                                                      We did our second Ikea kitchen a couple of years ago. The cabinets were $3k so, like you, that freed up a ton of money. And I LOVE them.

                                                                                    2. This is a post from the year 2008 and has no photo's of the new kitchen.

                                                                                      1. Beware to get every thing in writing, it protectss you & the contractor, I've been in the business since 1990 & tried to help a friend & fellow church member with just a handshake deal I should have known better after starting discovered all his electrical wiring was laying on the ground with water leaking on it needless to say had to get all the wire off the ground & in to conduit then his old flooring was squeaking so we screwed everything down to floor joist to make a long story short he refused to pay for the weeks of extra labor he got about a $90,000.00 remodel and paid me about $50,000.00 I should have known better but some people if they can't see the problem & are not willing to crawl under the house to look you better beware, hand shake deals can destroy friendships & cause problems that can never be fixed