02 | 25 | 2013To re-face, or not to re-face?
Wondering whether or not to re-face your old cabinets? We’re often asked about re-facing kitchen cabinets and if we offer that service. The short answer is, no, we do not.
A simple “no” answer does nothing to explain why we don’t offer cabinet re-facing. So let me take a few moments to explain the process, price comparison and our overall thoughts on this service. Be sure to read to the end, the pricing may surprise you!
Cabinet re-facing involves several steps. First and foremost a re-facing company will recommend replacing all of your doors and drawer fronts. This will instantly transform the appearance of your kitchen. It‘s very likely they will replace the cabinet hinges as well, however, your drawer glides will most likely remain original.
Prior to installing your new doors and fronts they will laminate over the existing cabinet boxes. This typically includes all of the exposed cabinet sides as well as the face frames of the cabinets. In other words, all portions of the cabinets that are visible with the doors closed will be covered in either a laminated wood veneer or plastic laminate. This is the portion of the project that takes the most labor, while the doors & drawer fronts themselves add most of the material costs.
The advantage to this service is obvious; you will end up with a kitchen that looks new and modern.
The disadvantage to this process is that you still have the same cabinets you did prior to starting. All of your shelves, drawer boxes, cabinet sides, cabinet bottoms, etc., are original. The wear and tear over the years remains. Any water damage hidden or visible will remain. I like to explain it like this: If you owned a car with 200,000 miles that looked shabby, would you keep it and just repaint it? In the end, you would have a nice looking car, but all of the working parts have 200k miles of wear and tear on them. How long would you expect the car to last after you spend the money to correct the appearance?
The same basic principle applies to your kitchen cabinets. How long would it take after re-facing your cabinets for the age to show through? Will you be destined to replace them after spending your hard earned money to spruce them up?
You might think, “But I’m sure to save a lot of money by re-facing, right?”
Not so fast! Many of the re-facing companies state “Re-facing is half the price of new cabinets”. If you take a look at the fine print you will see a disclaimer “Half the price of new CUSTOM cabinets”. As you can imagine, there are several options of new cabinets that cost less than custom cabinets do.
How about an example… We recently visited with a potential new client that had already received a quote from a re-facing company that claims they can do magic with their existing kitchen. It’s a small kitchen which includes only 6 cabinets. The total price for “Cabinet work” was $5,770.00
We took a look and quoted all new cabinets. In our quote we included 2 additional cabinets, one for above the refrigerator and another right beside it. Our total price, including labor, was $3,950.00
That’s a savings of over 30% and she will have all new cabinets.
So why don’t we offer re-facing? Because it’s simply not in the best interest of our clients!
Can’t believe it? Feel free to price out both options to see for yourself!