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How to Choose Stock Cabinets for Your Kitchen
Buying stock cabinets for your kitchen remodel can definitely save you money. Below are a few tips to help you create the right buying decision.
Buying stock cabinets rather than custom is an excellent way to save substantial money and time on a kitchen remodel.
Stock cabinets save you time because you don’t have to wait to allow them to be built. And they save you money because you aren’t spending money on customizations.
But that doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice quality. You just need to know what to look for.
What things to Look For
Solid wood and plywood cabinets. They’ll give you better longevity and crisper details than pressed hardwood.
Walls at least ?-inch dense. They’re more sturdy.
Consistency of surface finish. Lesser quality cupboards often have irregular coatings and colors in one cabinet box to the next.
Full-extension hardware. It allows you to open drawers all the way and open up doors almost 180 levels to make access easier.
Dovetail joinery. Or a metal box. Drawer sides and backs that are stapled collectively won’t last for as long.
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Cost and Installation
The cost of quality stock cabinets for an average-sized kitchen generally runs $8,000 to $10,000. Semi-custom cabinets would cost about twice that. And full custom cupboards would cost even more.
There are some lower-cost stock alternatives, such as IKEA (only $2,500), but you’ll offset your savings with the trouble of difficult assembly - fine if you have the patience and skill.
But unless you’ve got professional building experience, actually setting up kitchen cabinets isn’t a typical DIY job.
So carve out $100-$300 per cupboard (depending on labor rates locally) to keep these things professionally installed.
The Disadvantages of Stock Cabinets
End and color choices are limited. The probably options are coated white, cherry, or stained maple and natural solid wood.
Stock cabinets are just 36 inches tall. If you'd like taller cabinets, you’ll have to look semi-custom, which can take you up to 42 ins.
You could lose potential storage space. Filler strips are used to cover gaps created when the stock sizes don’t quite fill up the space - whereas custom cupboards can be assessed to take benefit of all space.
Extra details such as crown molding aren’t included. Mitered sides and furniture-style sides aren’t included either. However, you can add crown molding yourself later if you select.
Warranties are small. The industry standard is about 5 years, and they only cover product not wear, failure and tear.