Kitchen Cabinets

Discussion in 'Remodel Forum & Blog' started by devans175, Jan 2, 2008.

  1. devans175

    devans175 New Member

    Messages:
    66
    Location:
    Maryland
    I'm looking to remodel my kitchen and I'm looking for some help / advice. I looked at the Kraftmaid cabinets at the local home improvement store. The ones with all ply sides and dovetail drawers seemed to be of good quality. Any opinions? I'm in the Military and can't really afford custom built cabinets. The KraftMaid are stretching my budget as it is.

    Is there a way for a DIYer to get wholesale prices on good cabinets? I understand that 70% of the cost of these cabinets is mark-up. Everybody needs to make a buck, but that's a little rediculous.
  2. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Messages:
    8,997
    Location:
    San Diego
    The cost of plywood is at least double the cost of MDF, so you get to decide what you want to pay for.

    I don't know what you earn, but you may have noticed that the cost of labor makes anything produced in the US expensive, which is why so much crap is made in china. It's a 2 edged sword....you can't have your cake and eat it , too.


    It certainly is true that a retailer has to mark up everything he sells. If you go to a local cabinet shop, you may be able to come close to the price of those kraftmaid if you don't want all the bells and whistles. You will probably get a better install job than from the smockmen, because they have to squeeze a piece out of their install contractors, as well.
  3. statjunk

    statjunk DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    542
    I was able to find some cabinets on the internet at an affordable price. They don't have dovetail draws but the entire cabinet is made out of wood. This issue is you don't get the selection of a cabinet shop. Here is the place I bought from.

    http://www.cabinetheadquarters.net/cabinet-headquarters

    They guys name is Ben. Very nice guy.

    Tom
  4. devans175

    devans175 New Member

    Messages:
    66
    Location:
    Maryland
    Yeah, but 300%.... If I understood what I read, the smockmen pay $100 and charge $400... can that be true? I would think the guys that did the work and built the cabinets should make most of the profit. I hate the idea of paying so much for them, or any other reseller, to be a middle man.


    Thanks for the info Tom, That looks like a great option. I wish there was a place I could go to see the cabinets in person, though. Maybe I'll give Ben a call.
  5. statjunk

    statjunk DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    542
    He'll send you one.

    Tom
  6. Livin4Real

    Livin4Real New Member

    Messages:
    192
    Location:
    Indianapolis, IN
    Check out Kitchen Kompact as well, nice quality at a great price.
  7. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Messages:
    8,997
    Location:
    San Diego
    Average retail markup is 50 to 100 %. The average markup in a big box is about 35%. A small wholesale distributor has "list price" which is the manufacturer's "suggested retail" and probably represents about 100% markup; then his wholesale commercial customers get a discount....5,10,20, maybe as much as 40% off the list, depending on who they are.

    I don't know what HD would get as a markup on special order cabinets, but I am certain it is nothing like 300%, and is probably much less than 100%.

    Regarding that link to Ben: This is good looking stuff. It is quite similar to the Mills Pride line sold at HD, but he has a wider selection of styles and finishes. You do realize that , like the Mills Pride, Ben is RTA ( you put it together yourself)?? His face frames and drawer boxes are wood, which is very good. Mills Pride is frameless, but the drawers are not wood. The doors in most finishes are wood. I did not see on the website, and I really doubt, that Ben's cabinet boxes are wood. Probably MDF. This is a good question to ask, unless it is on the site and I just didn't see it.
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2008
  8. statjunk

    statjunk DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    542
    I just installed an whole kitchen with this stuff. It is all wood and very easy to assemble. I was fairly impressed. I had a few issues in terms of what was shipped and he handled them all professionally. Not to mention I saved about $5k on my kitchen going this route. I've already had the granite installed for about a month now and all has been great.

    No I don't represent the company at all.

    Tom
  9. bronsonb

    bronsonb New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    Smyrna, GA
    Cabinets

    Hey - Good luck with the cabinets no matter what you do...and thank you for your military service from a grateful citizen!

    We redid our kitchen last year with KraftMaid. If you go through the big box stores, after they give you the final price, ask for 10% off of that. I've been told by more than one Lowe's employee that they will give you 10% off of any major purchase if you ask. If worse comes to worse, you can buy a 10% off coupon off of e-bay for about $5. I've bought several of those. Anyway, that will save you a little (it saved us about $1,500 at the time).

    Another option...in Atlanta (actually, outside of Atlanta), there was a wholesaler who sold KraftMaid cabinets. He claimed that if you brought him your design, he could match the cabinets and save you 40%. I never got around to checking because we'd had great service from Lowe's and decided we'd stick with them as we liked the design of the door panel, and that particular design was exclusive to Lowe's. Unfortunately, I can't remember the wholesaler's name, but he was outside Atlanta...in Canton if I recall.

    We also installed a butler's pantry (this one is actually "butler-less"), and we got the cabinets for it from IKEA. We really liked the look (a beadboard white), but they were pricier than I thought they'd be. We paid $1300 for three 40" upper cabinets (one with glass doors), two lower cabinets, beechwood countertops, crown molding, and lights. I then had to assemble them myself. And they aren't real wood. But they went together easily and installed very easily. You can install IKEA cabinets by yourself. Those Scandanavians really designed that aspect quite well.

    In a previous home, we used Mills Pride cabinets twice...one for our office and once for cabinets in our bedroom. Very easy to build..a little more difficult to install versus IKEA. Biggest benefit of Mills Pride is that they have a lifetime guarantee. I cracked a door 18 months after installing them and just called their 1-800 # and they sent a replacement lickity split without any questions.

    KraftMaid also offers a lifetime warranty, but we had to go to Lowe's to order replacement parts (cracked a solid cherry door on one of the cabinets). So it was a little less easy compared to Mills Pride.

    I hope this info help! Good luck!
  10. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Messages:
    8,997
    Location:
    San Diego

    The Swedes probably designed all that stuff, but today it is all manufactured you-know-where!
  11. devans175

    devans175 New Member

    Messages:
    66
    Location:
    Maryland
    I think I'm leaning toward the RTA cabinets. The last time I remodeled a kitchen a big problem was storing the cabinets durring the project. The RTA stuff should be more compact and take up less space. Thanks for all of your input. I'm sure my wife will appreciate it, too... Once the dust clears....
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2008
  12. statjunk

    statjunk DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    542
    I wouldn't order the cabinets until you are ready to install them or just a couple of days out. If you run into difficulties with what was shipped or the condition you are asking for trouble. Just think about it. Hey I just opened the cabinet (3 months after it ships) and a board is warped. How can he assume that you didn't store them improperly?

    I think that's a bad idea.

    Tom
  13. Nate R

    Nate R New Member

    Messages:
    472
    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    What happens when you get 2 of the wrong cabinets and can't complete the install? You end up with a month of the kitchen sitting at the same state? It's a tough call when to order cabinets.


    A LOT of the Mills Pride is going to pre-assembled. I was told that HD is phasing out the unassembled cabinets. Dunno if that's reigonal or national.
  14. devans175

    devans175 New Member

    Messages:
    66
    Location:
    Maryland
    That all makes sense. The last time I ordered fully assembled cabinets I ran into a similar problem. Half of the cabinets were dammaged... doors cracked, carcases cracked... etc. They were made by Premire. When i talked about storage of the RTAs, I was only talking about days... not months. They would need to be out of the way while I'm demo-ing and drywall-ing. I'm not going to start the major part of that until the cabinets are on site. I've had too many experiences with missed delivery dates. Gotta keep the wife happy...
  15. Mikey

    Mikey Aspiring Old Fart, EE, computer & networking geek

    Messages:
    2,714
    Location:
    Central Florida
    If the existing cabinets are fundamentally of good quality, look into having them refaced. Full disclosure: every time I've tried to surprise my wife, we discover yet another difference in our value systems.
  16. Grimace

    Grimace New Member

    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Slater, Iowa
    Amen brother
  17. allnewbath

    allnewbath New Member

    Messages:
    9
    There are websites you can purchase the whole system for very cheap price. You can google them.

    Hope it helps
  18. parry

    parry New Member

    Messages:
    13
    Remodeling kitchen is a very sensitive issue because it helps to increase the status of the owner. Beautiful kitchen attracts everyone especially females. While renovating kitchen many aspects have to be keep in mind like the accessories neither to be of cheap brand or to expensive. It should have a decant warranty. And last but not the least it should be fitted by an expert plumber which has experience and skills.
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