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Why Kitchen Cabinets Are So Expensive

Whether you just moved in or crave a renovation of your kitchen for some peace of mind, you will need a guide. When considering prices and offers in stores, it is always best to check in during the winter months. But why are prices still so high and how to choose the best cabinets? 

Kitchen cabinets are usually built to last you for solid decades, which is why you will pay extra for their quality and manual labor that went into building them. 

Of course, prices differ depending on the material, especially if you wish to get custom made ones. 

But how much does it actually cost to renovate your kitchen, what materials are the best when it comes to cabinets, and does building kitchen cabinets from scratch pay off in the long run? 

We have investigated and come up with the answers for you. Find out what your best options are and how does the alternative to buying mass-produced furniture really works.

How Much Does It Cost To Put New Cabinets In A Kitchen?

Depending on the type and material of your needed cabinet, the prices can vary from $100 to $3000. 

Starting from wall cabinets, you would need to spend between $100 and $300 if you decide to buy from a regular mass-production store in the US.

Base cabinets also start at the same price but can climb up to $500 depending on the material. So if you need both wall and base cabinets you can save money by finding the cheapest options at an equal price.

Corner cabinets can vary from $200 to $1000, while utility cabinets start at about 500$ and reach a price of $3000. In case your kitchen is on the bigger side and you need to equip the whole room, you will have to consider all of the types, or build your own cabinets – it will cost less money but more time.

What Makes Kitchen Cabinets Expensive?

Kitchen Cabinets
via flickr

In short, their quality. They are not meant to be changed every so often and should be made in such a way to protect your dishes and utilities, but also not to fall apart when coming into contact with water or food. 

This means not just any random easily accessible material can be used. Additionally, a lot of work and time goes into producing kitchen cabinets. Only one piece can take up about 6 hours to build. Being skilled in this type of job is pricy. 

The price also depends on the materials used in building them, the more you pay, the better quality wood you get. 

When considering how long it takes to learn about the materials and tools, including the effort and time that goes into creating your kitchen cabinets, the prices will not seem that high.

If it was easy, you would be able to do it yourself in one weekend – and have perfect cabinets that will last you decades and not crack, swell, or chip.

Is It Cheaper To Build Kitchen Cabinets?

If you have the experience, with building and construction, we recommend you try it. If you are just doing it to save money, you will probably not be able to reach that goal. Kitchen cabinets are not easy to build. 

If you order materials, buy tools, and spend time creating some special cabinets, you will have spent more time and money than you would if you just bought brand new cabinets, professionally made.

Your cabinets may be a source of pride but will certainly not last you for as long as they could if you bought them.

If you insist on doing it yourself, we do have a few tips. In case you are going through with this experience, we suggest you don’t yet tackle some custom designs because they are not for first-timers. 

If you are pretty handy or wish to try a new hobby and save some money in the process, here is one video on how to do that.

If you want to have custom made pieces in your kitchen, you have two options:

You can either build them yourself, which is cheaper but harder, and you may end up with low-quality cabinets, or order custom made cabinets from a professional – which is expensive but you can have exactly wanted measurements installed into your kitchen.

It is important to at least contact a professional to measure and install the cabinets even if you build them yourself. Make sure you follow instructions and have the needed tools to build your furniture. 

Everything can be DIY-ed, with more or less quality depending on your patience, talent, and materials you have collected.

Are Solid Wood Cabinets Worth The Money?

When it comes to solid wood, it is worth the extra cash. Stock cabinets cost about $60-$200 a foot. However custom ones go up to $650. Solid wood is very durable and resilient. Cabinets made from it will last you for decades.

If you are planning to settle down, invest in solid wood cabinets and you won’t have to worry about your kitchen for the rest of your life. You can choose from a range of types and colors depending on your preference.

Solid wood furniture can be customized, although it will cost you a bit more. You get to choose what they will look like and have unique cabinets to spice up your cooking experience.

Make sure you don’t leave the kitchen cabinets unfinished because it will react badly to moisture – it is not waterproof. You need to take care of these cabinets to avoid cracking under high temperatures and place them as far away from the oven as possible. The cracking can be even more noticeable when the wood is painted.

Solid wood is more vulnerable to pest attack than plywood. It requires regular maintenance and the right finishing to keep the wood well protected but your cabinets will last you a long time.

What Wood Is The Cheapest For Kitchen Cabinets?

There are plenty of materials you can choose from when deciding on your cabinets. Click here to read more about exact prices for different materials and sizes.

For example, there is maple, cherry, oak, pine, and bamboo. These are just one of the most popular ones.

Maple is a great choice when it comes to endurance, it doesn’t mind occasional staining. Cherry is very similar, suitable for different styles but heavier than maple. Oak is very elegant and a popular choice for cabinet material. It is very durable as well.

Pine is very modern and looks very sleek. In case you wish to pay special attention to ecology, choose bamboo cabinets. It is very sustainable and has a modern look to it. Birch is a great option when it comes to cabinets that open and close often but is not as hard.

When it comes to prices, cherry wood is the most expensive due to its durability. It is very easy to work with if you are doing it yourself. Maple is a bit less expensive but said to be the best choice since it’s hardwood.

Pine is one of the cheapest materials you can buy whether you are building your own cabinets or ordering from the store.

Hardwood goes up to $20, while plywood up to $100, and softwood under $10. 

What Are The Best Kitchen Cabinets For The Money?

Here are some tips and tricks to buying the perfect set of cabinets for your kitchen. Visiting a store instead of custom designing your furniture is the best option if you want to save money and have quality cabinets – but maybe not perfectly placed.

Investigate. Read about different stores, materials, experiences, and brands. Decide what is the best option for you, what you value more – esthetics or endurance.

Some of the most popular brands that offer quality and are affordable are Fabuwood, Forevermark, and Cubitac. And don’t forget that IKEA has some quality pieces even if you are not a fan of modern light pieces.

Solid wood elements will add value to your home for sure and maybe the best option if you wish to renovate your kitchen once and for all. So think about investing a bit more because you will end up receiving a lot more than you spend.

Pine is a material which is the least expensive but will last you a long time. This material is incredibly cost-effective and you will not regret choosing this option.

So weigh your necessities and values, and don’t spend too much on a crazy design you will stop liking in a few years. Custom design is often not worth your money. Compare prices and materials and decide what is the best decision for you and your home. You are the one who will be doing all the cooking!

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