Tips & Ideas

We offer a range of traditional and contemporary cabinets selections built to fit a variety of environments.

We believe that before a client decides to make a purchase, he must be familiarized with the product and the different options. Here at The Proficient Cabinets Inc, we share Tips and Ideas to help you make a decision based on exact knowledge of product and marketing trend.

How many times have you noticed that people tend to congregate in the kitchen? No matter how comfortable you make the rest of the house, guests and family head for the bright lights and tasty aromas of the hardest working spot in your home. If you have children, they probably work on their school projects in the kitchen and tell you about their day while sitting at the kitchen counter or inspecting the contents of the fridge. It’s a truth of family life that seems to transcend cultural boundaries. The kitchen is the best part of a home, and preserving its warmth while updating its look, feel and function is one of the challenges of kitchen design.

A kitchen makeover can add to the value of your home and make your time cooking more efficient and enjoyable. There are lots of reasons to update your kitchen, but beyond the siren call of the glossy design magazines and those shiny appliances you’ve been eyeing at the local home improvement store, there are some lurking pitfalls and design gotchas that you should be aware of. In the next few pages, we’ll take a look at 10 common kitchen design mistakes and offer some suggestions on how to avoid them. Your kitchen is a hub of activity, and with so much going on, it can be a challenge to create a space that will be all things to all people. The good news is that most of these problems are easy to avoid if you do a little planning.

Kitchen Size Considerations

We believe that before a client decides to make a purchase, he must be familiarized with the product and the different options. Here at The Proficient Cabinets Inc, we share Tips and Ideas to help you make a decision based on exact knowledge of product and marketing trend.

How many times have you noticed that people tend to congregate in the kitchen? No matter how comfortable you make the rest of the house, guests and family head for the bright lights and tasty aromas of the hardest working spot in your home. If you have children, they probably work on their school projects in the kitchen and tell you about their day while sitting at the kitchen counter or inspecting the contents of the fridge. It’s a truth of family life that seems to transcend cultural boundaries. The kitchen is the best part of a home, and preserving its warmth while updating its look, feel and function is one of the challenges of kitchen design.

A kitchen makeover can add to the value of your home and make your time cooking more efficient and enjoyable. There are lots of reasons to update your kitchen, but beyond the siren call of the glossy design magazines and those shiny appliances you’ve been eyeing at the local home improvement store, there are some lurking pitfalls and design gotchas that you should be aware of. In the next few pages, we’ll take a look at 10 common kitchen design mistakes and offer some suggestions on how to avoid them. Your kitchen is a hub of activity, and with so much going on, it can be a challenge to create a space that will be all things to all people. The good news is that most of these problems are easy to avoid if you do a little planning.

Small, Medium, or Large

Small: Cozy and Carefully Engineered. If your kitchen is tiny, try to steal some space from an adjoining pantry or closet, or even a few feet from the next room. If there’s just no way to borrow extra square footage, see if you can visually open up the space: Add or enlarge a window, install a skylight, break through an interior wall into an adjacent dining or family room, or even break through the ceiling to create a cathedral that will dramatically create visual expansion.

To maximize work space, consider an island on casters or a peninsula with hinged, drop-down sections. To make the most of storage space, run cabinets all the way up to the ceiling, and use pot racks and other overhead hooks that make use of ceiling space. Outfit drawers and cupboards with clever interior fittings — dividers, Lazy Susans, and so on — to keep physical clutter at bay, and avoid visual clutter by using solid, pale colors that blend into one another. For an eat-in option, include a slender snack bar with overhanging counters that allow the stools to be tucked out of the way. And enjoy the advantages of small kitchens: They’re naturally step-saving and cozily friendly.

• Midsize: Convenient and Comfortable. Most homes have midsize kitchens, which, with a modest amount of intelligent improvement, can function like big ones. In both new and older homes, opening the kitchen to an adjoining family room creates a “great room” effect that gives the spacious feeling of an expanded kitchen. Other design tactics can make your midsize kitchen seem even bigger and better. Strive for maximum-length unbroken runs of work space; for example, locate the range at the end of a counter, not in the middle.

By taking advantage of every clever, in-drawer storage solution recommended for small kitchens, you may be able to save enough space for a big-kitchen option like a second sink or a desk nook. If an island takes up too much space, consider a practical, tiered peninsula with work space on the kitchen side and a snack bar/serving counter on the family room side. Other dining options include a built-in dining nook with bench seating and a peninsula table, or a table with chairs on one side and a built-in banquette on the other. When decorating, keep colors light and patterns simple to maximize visual spaciousness, but if the kitchen opens into an adjoining room, repeat some elements in both rooms for continuity.

• Large: Impressive and Entertaining. More than ever, today’s kitchens are rooms for living. Space for couple or communal cooking, doing homework, enjoying hobbies, watching TV, and more are all part of many people’s wish lists, and that translates into bigger-than-ever rooms. Following that trend, today’s new homes typically sport generously sized kitchens. In an older home, space for a big kitchen often comes from building an addition. More space allows homeowners to indulge in more work surfaces and more kinds of them (butcher block for cutting, marble for pastry-making, granite for everyday good looks, and so on).

Large kitchens have ample space for amenities such as strategically placed islands; more than one wall oven and sink; a second dishwasher; and/or a full-size, side-by-side fridge plus state-of-the-art refrigeration drawers located within cabinets anywhere in the room. A comfortable snack bar or breakfast bar, an informal dining area, and a built-in desk or computer workstation are other options. A big kitchen also allows more latitude in decoration and design, including dark cabinets and wall colors, dramatic decorative effects, and sharply contrasting colors and patterns, so you can have it your way.

Cooking For Two

More and more couples are cooking together just for the fun of it or to feed a horde of friends. In some cases, it’s a matter of cooking with, not just for, a crowd, as guests help chop, wash, and prep as well as chat. For many families, cooking is also a favorite group activity, whether they enjoy a weekly homemade-pizza night every Sunday or an annual Christmas cookie bake-a-thon. A successful multicook kitchen includes multiples of at least one basic appliance (usually the sink or cooktop) that creates several separate workstations. These stations may share one or more of the other basics elements, or, if space allows, they may be entirely independent triangles.

The classic triangles have been updated for today’s two-cook needs. In an L-shape kitchen-for-two, twin triangles may be created by adding an extra sink and an extra cooktop that share access to the refrigerator. A new U-for-two might feature two cooktops with shared access to an island sink and the fridge opposite, on the enclosed leg of the “U.” The new G-shape kitchen might offer dual baking and surface cooking with one work area including a sink and cooktop and the other a sink and the oven, with both sharing access to the fridge.

In a shared kitchen, several people are working with hot, wet, and sharp items in one space. Safety basics include wide-enough traffic paths (at least 36 inches) to minimize collisions; nonslip flooring; and ample, heat-resistant landing spaces on both sides of every cooking appliance. Smart upgrades, especially when youngsters will be underfoot, are rounded corners on cabinets and other kitchen furniture and well-designed knife racks or blocks to discourage chefs from leaving cutting tools on counters.

Kitchen Shapes

In kitchen geometry, the work triangle is the shape that connects the sink, cooktop, and refrigerator. The work triangle is the functional center of every kitchen.

Studies have shown that in the most efficient kitchens, the three legs of the work triangle add up to at least 12 feet but no more than 23 feet. Of course, your kitchen’s basic shape and size will influence the type of work triangle that fits best. Regardless of the perimeter shape of the room, most kitchens are organized around one of several basic kitchen layouts, each with its own type of triangle. One’s right for you!

• U-Shape: This shape puts the stove, fridge, and sink each on a different wall and offers a very compact triangle that lets you prepare a meal while walking the shortest distance. It works best with the sink (the most-used element) in the center of the “U” and the fridge at one end of a run of counters to avoid breaking up a work surface. This shape works well in a kitchen that’s nearly square or in a kitchen where you want to tightly define one end of a larger space as the basic work area, with an island set in the open end of the “U,” perhaps fronting onto the family room or breakfast room.

• L-Shape: This shape uses two walls of the kitchen for the three points of the work triangle. Often, the fridge is at one end of the long leg of the “L,” the sink is toward the center of the same wall, and the stove is perpendicular, on the short leg of the “L.” In contrast to the U-shape kitchen, the “L” has a long, rather than a short, wall facing into the rest of the room. Room traffic does not cross into the triangle, and, since this design uses only two walls, the triangle is long and relatively narrow, allowing for a more open layout. This setup is well-suited to a large room where the kitchen shares space with a family room. Additional counterspace may further lengthen one leg of the “L.”

• G-Shape: This shape features one appliance on each of two walls and the third appliance on a peninsula that separates the work area from an adjoining breakfast area or family room. If housing the cooktop in the accessible peninsula worries you (for safety reasons), you can always put the sink there instead and locate the cook top on a full wall within the kitchen itself. Alternatively, put the cooktop on the peninsula, but create a safety margin by making the peninsula a tiered affair, with the cooktop at least six inches lower than the serving ledge.

• Whatever your plan, the sink should take central position if at all possible, as it’s used more often than either the refrigerator or the stove. If you locate the sink on the same wall as the stove, with the main work area in the middle, you won’t drip water on the floor when you go from the sink to the cook top. When placing the refrigerator, make sure the single-door model, when open, faces into the work triangle, not out of it.

Basic Tips for Kitchen Remodeling

Kitchens come in all shapes and sizes, which accounts for a lot of their challenge — and a lot of their appeal. The same cabinets, appliances, and surfacing materials can look entirely different in someone else’s home than in yours. Stock cabinets can be given a unique look with virtually unlimited specialty finishes and a change of hardware. If your budget can accommodate custom cabinets, your choices are even greater. Countertop materials already come in a great array of choices, but they can be customized even further with special routing or inset bands of another color or material. The same goes for flooring, walls, and in-kitchen dining furniture. So even if your kitchen is small and ordinary, it’s not hopeless!

You can transform it into a remarkable space unlike anybody else’s. Manufacturers and designers have seen it all, and the end result is that you can have all the amenities you want and need, even in a tiny kitchen. Savvy, space-saving products are available for the owner of the apartment-size condo, co-op, or townhouse kitchen. You’ll find that convenience doesn’t have to come only in the large economy size.

To create a distinctive space, your first move is to look at your kitchen with an eye to what might serve as a focal point. A large window, alcove, or long wall can be the start. Take advantage of a bank of beautiful windows with an eye-catching counter that runs the length of the window wall. If you love to entertain and are lucky enough to have ample space, consider setting your room up to include two back-to-back kitchens; one with a full-size range, a fridge, ovens, and a sink, and the other with an ice-maker, a wine chiller, a second sink, a mini-fridge, and a microwave, plus an abundance of storage. Pretty much anything you dream up can be executed with the help of a talented design team. It’s up to you!

Kitchen Islands

A kitchen island and its cousin, the peninsula, can vastly expand the design potential and convenience of just about any kitchen. Among the earliest islands were farm tables that gave cooks extra work surfaces and doubled as informal dining stations. Today, a homeowner has the option of islands made of the same materials as the base cabinets and countertop for an integral look. On the other hand, the latest trend is leaning back toward a freestanding look, with upper cabinets, base cabinets, and countertop materials in a mix of materials and colors.

In this scenario, any freestanding piece of furniture with at least one part standing at about counter height can function as an island. Most homeowners prefer a piece that offers hidden cabinets, open shelves, or a combination of the two in addition to another work surface. In a more high-tech kitchen, lower storage may also include a host of refinements such as wine racks and refrigerated drawers.

In many kitchens, the island is used as an extra workstation, adding to the usefulness of the work triangle or corridor kitchen. In others, it’s used as a low, casual divider defining the perimeter of the kitchen where it meets the family room or breakfast room. In either case, if you add in-floor wiring, plumbing, and gas lines, the possibilities for an island’s usefulness are endless. Just about any appliance can be located in an island if the plumbing and electrical wiring are planned in. A wine rack, a gourmet wine chiller, an under-cabinet refrigerator, and an ice-maker on the family room side are very nice options.

On the kitchen side, add a second dishwasher, a microwave, or even an under-cabinet wall oven. In a small or medium-size kitchen, one of the most popular uses of an island is as a place to house the sink. The option of facing toward the family room is so attractive that a kitchen island sink has replaced the classic under-the-window sink in many homes. In a larger kitchen, the island may house a second sink. When combined with easy access to the microwave and the fridge, this setup creates a secondary work triangle.

Your needs and tastes will help determine what kind of island you should have. In a smaller space, you’ll get maximum storage, convenience, and a neat appearance if you specify cabinets on both sides of the kitchen island so that dishes can be stashed or removed from either side. For a stylish, freestanding-furniture look that’s especially at home in traditional settings, specify an island with table legs and a low shelf for open display and storage. The common kitchen principle of extending every countertop at least an inch beyond the cabinets to prevent dribbling spills down cabinet fronts especially applies to islands. Obviously, you’ll need significantly more overhang for knee room (at least 15 inches) if your island is used as a snack table or as a higher snack counter with stools (18 inches).

One of the most dramatic, popular island designs is two-tiered, with food prep on the kitchen side and counter seating on the other. A sink can be stationed either on the same level as the eating counter or on a waist-high work counter with the dining surface on a higher plane. When the appliance you want to house in the island is a cooktop, however, safety dictates that the cooktop be on a lower plane, with the snack counter at least four to six inches higher. Specify heat-resistant material for the countertops adjoining the cooktop and at least 24 inches of counter for landing space on both sides, and provide for at least four inches of heat-resistant backsplash.

An island opposite the fridge is a logical place for the microwave. It’s still within the work triangle, which makes sense because most of what goes in the microwave comes from the fridge. Alternatively, if your microwave gets more use by the kids as a snack-fixer, you may prefer to locate it outside the triangle but still near the fridge, in a combination work island/snack bar. Wall ovens are often located outside the work triangle since they’re not used as much as a cooktop, and anything you bake or roast will stay in the oven for at least 15 minutes. An island may prove the most convenient landing spot for hot foods out of the oven.

In generously sized kitchens, it might be best to think along the lines of “if one island is good, two are better.” A primary island may be stationed within the work triangle, housing extra storage, a mini-fridge or refrigerator drawers, a prep sink, a drop-in cook top, and so on. Another island might serve solely as a snack bar, perhaps with a small TV perched at one end on a swivel base. If this island defines the perimeter of the kitchen, choose your island base, top, and counter stools to coordinate with the decorative scheme of the adjoining room. Whether this means elegant leather bar chairs, pretty wicker with plump cushions, or metal bistro stools with amusing cut-out motifs is up to you. Even in the kitchen, an island is for fun and adventure!

Eat-In Kitchens

The formal, separate dining room has passed in and out of vogue over the decades, but the option of eating in the kitchen has always held appeal. The informal, efficient design of an eat-in kitchen is ideal for today’s casual, fast-paced lifestyle. At the same time, today’s tastes are distinctly more luxurious than they were a couple of decades ago.

Fortunately, unless you yearn for an authentic period home, there’s no reason why you can’t have a kitchen dining setup that’s both easygoing and opulent. Depending on the size of your kitchen, you have a number of choices for creating an eat-in kitchen. Today’s savvy design solutions and coordinated products ensure that any option you choose will fit right in and look great.

• Counter Dining. Where space is slim or where the users have no special needs, a breakfast bar looks great. A breakfast bar’s informality and slim silhouette lends itself naturally to a casual, contemporary scheme, but if your kitchen is opulently traditional, using the same materials for the counter and bar will tie it in perfectly. Imaginative counter stools can be great decorating assets. Make sure the counter overhang is deep enough to accommodate knees comfortably, and, if your stools don’t have footrests, make sure your bar has a footrest ledge or rail.

A two-tiered peninsula or island can house a sink or cooktop on the lower, kitchen side with room for two to four diners opposite. If the peninsula or island houses only a small sink, there’s usually plenty of room to seat a number of diners on the same level as the work surface. (A cooktop requires more space and, if possible, the barrier of a different level for safety’s sake.) Ideally, allow at least 42 inches from the open end to the opposite wall, and don’t locate the fridge or wall oven opposite, where an open door would block traffic. Allow at least 18 inches and preferably 24 inches of elbow room for each diner. And if breakfast never will be your thing, rest assured your cozy nook or chic bar will work just fine for after-school and midnight snacks.

• Breakfast Nooks. If you have a bit more available space or want a more traditional, cozy look, you might consider adding a breakfast area with built-in banquette seating. A bay window alcove, with a banquette serving as a window seat and with pull-up chairs on the other side of the table, is charming if you can manage it. You can create a welcoming air with plump bench or stool cushions that carry your color scheme.

No matter how small your kitchen or how rushed your schedule, there is almost always a way to work a little breakfast into the equation. The breakfast nook with fitted bench or banquette seating is a cozy solution that works well in ethnic or country/cottage kitchen design schemes. It’s also a cute solution in retro settings inspired by a ’50s malt shop booth. The table may be freestanding or may be a peninsula, with one end anchored to the wall or to a run of cabinets. The coziest breakfast nook setup features benches that are parallel, with the table between.

For a more relaxed, open layout, the benches may be placed perpendicular to one another, with the table spanning the open side. A breakfast nook can be a comfortable solution where space is scant, because benches require much less floor space than chairs. If your family includes a mix of young and not-so-young, a breakfast nook may be a perfect — and practical — alternative. Benches are safer than counter stools for young children, and, because the table is a conventional height, it is accessible to wheelchair users.

• Eat-in Kitchens. For large kitchens, or those that feature a natural alcove, dining tables that seat anywhere from four to 12 people are a good option. You can have fun picking out chairs that complement your own personal taste, from heirloom traditional to classic modern glass-and-metal. Another option you may consider is having an island or table made of the same material as your cabinets or countertops. In keeping with the informal nature of kitchen dining, consider small armchairs all around, not just at the head and foot of the table.

A round table is a friendly choice and is safer for an active family or in a smaller space. In the dining area of your kitchen, away from the stove, you can define a welcoming space with more elaborate curtains or draperies than you would use at a window in the work area. For continuity’s sake, match or coordinate your eating-area window treatments with those in the work area. Coordinate window treatments and tabletop textile colors with seating cushions for an inviting, total look.

Cabinet Refacing Vs. Cabinet Replacement

Kitchen cabinet refacing is not the same as cabinet replacement, although both can be cheaper than buying entirely new kitchen cabinets.

Because kitchen cabinets often set the tone of a kitchen, they get a lot of attention from kitchen remodeling retailers. This attention comes in the way of service categories that can be confusing to the untrained home improvement novice. There are three basic ways to change the look of your kitchen cabinets:

• Install New Cabinets
• Cabinet Replacement
• Cabinet Refacing

Let’s start with the easiest one first–installing entirely new cabinets. This is pretty self-explanatory, but often gets confused with the second option, cabinet replacement. Cabinet replacement consists of removing cabinet doors and drawers, installing new ones, and then staining the whole cabinet to make it look new once again. This process doesn’t change the basic infrastructure of your old kitchen cabinets, but replaces parts that show the most wear and tear. This project is obviously cheaper than installing new cabinets because there is a lot less work involved.

Remodeling Your Home on a Budget?

Replacing the cabinets in your kitchen could open up a can of worms that can only cost you more money. Most homeowners don’t have an unlimited budget when it comes to home improvement projects — you have to make the most of your money. Refacing your cabinets can cost anywhere from $2,000 to $4,000. Can you afford not to save money? Check around with a few contractors and get quotes for both projects. You’ll soon find that the cost of replacing kitchen cabinets far outweighs the money you can save by refacing instead

Reface Your Cabinets with Classic Style
More homeowners are turning to kitchen cabinet refacing to update their kitchens and increase the future resale values of their homes. According to market research, kitchen remodeling is one of the best ways to yield a high return on investment (ROI). Kitchen remodeling can typically generate about a 90% ROI. Refacing your kitchen cabinets can offer one of the highest ROIs, but to keep your investment solid, you may want to remodel with a classic look that won’t readily go out of style.

Choose from the Classics
When refacing your cabinets, you may want to consider some of the trademarks of a classic style kitchen:
• Neutral colors like whites, creams, or beiges
• Monochromatic or duo-chromatic color schemes
• Neutral materials such as dark wood combined with stone that doesn’t go out of style
• Formal furniture with tight backs and rolled arms–furniture longevity is more important than following the latest trends
• Dark wood furnishings with classic shapes
• Decorate to match the architectural style of your kitchen when in doubt
• Use symmetry or buy items in pairs to balance the room

Classic Reface, Classic Kitchen
Kitchen cabinet refacing options can help you realize your desire for a classic kitchen. Veneers can be made out of a number of classic wood styles–maple, cherry, or oak. Your contractor can apply the wood veneers over your existing cabinet doors, and they’ll look like new solid wood cabinets–no one will know the difference.

Cabinet Refacing: Finishes that Make a Difference

Want to give your dated kitchen a whole new look without spending an arm and a leg? Refacing your existing cabinetry could be the answer. Whether you’re looking for a finish that is budget-friendly, colorful, or long-lasting, you’ll have an amazing number of kitchen cabinet finishes to choose from when you reface your cabinets.

Here’s a review of three of the most popular refacing cabinet finishes: wood, plastic laminate, and rigid thermofoils.  

Cabinet Finishes: Wood
It’s hard to argue with the beauty of natural wood. While wood cabinet doors are  expensive (they can run as much as 25 percent more than either rigid thermofoil or laminate finishes), you can choose from a number of styles and designs from natural oak to painted pine.  

Refacing with Plastic Laminate
Looking for an affordable kitchen cabinet finish with a proven track record of durability? A plastic laminate cabinet finish could be the answer. Less expensive than wood, but costing slightly more than rigid thermofoils, plastic laminate cabinet finishes come in a wide variety of colors. However, because they cannot be molded or shaped, they are available only in a limited number of styles. Plastic laminates are a good choice if your kitchen design calls for a simple but colorful cabinet finish.

RTF: Rigid Thermofoils
Offering an easy to clean, durable, wood-like finishes, rigid thermofoils (RTF) are a popular cabinet choice with many homeowners. Unlike laminates, RTF can be shaped into a variety of styles including raised panel, cathedral, and arched doors. What’s more, because RTF is the least expensive of all kitchen cabinet finishes, it’s a budget-friendly choice.

With so many kitchen cabinet finishes to choose from, it’s easy to find a look you’ll love with a price tag you can live with.

Remodeling Your Kitchen in Today's Real Estate Market

In a slow housing market, buyers are pickier than ever. They are looking to be dazzled at bargain prices. Kitchen remodeling will not only improve your home’s value, it could give your home the boost it needs to be the best on the block.

Find the Best Cabinet Refacing Deal Fast:
Some improvement experts suggest that making changes to your home now, while the real estate market is slower than average, is a good choice. Whether you plan to stay or to sell, both you and future homeowners will benefit from any sort of kitchen remodeling, especially one that improves function and not looks alone.

A recent article in the Chicago Daily Herald reveals, “Replacements are king…In terms of remodels, kitchen and bathroom renovations continue to offer the highest returns.” But much of the hefty cost of kitchen remodeling comes when you completely replace what you have. In the case of a kitchen, where cabinets comprise a large part of the cost, time, and hassle of remodeling, you may be able no reface instead of replace.

Refacing for the Future
Real estate market analysts agree that the housing market should rebound in the near future. Some say we will continue to see the market slow in the immediate future, while others say the fall season will bring new buyers eager to take advantage of lower prices. Regardless of the market in your neighborhood, your schedule and your budget are important considerations.

Completely replacing kitchen cabinets can be messy and costly. Refacing those kitchen cabinets can save you a lot during a time when every dollar in your home counts.

Finish Your Kitchen with the Perfect Countertops

One of the surest ways to finish off your kitchen remodeling effort with a fine touch is to replace your scarred or faded countertops.

Tackling Those Kitchen Countertops
For now, let’s leave the removal and installation costs out of it. Just remember that if you’re in over your head on this project, bring in professional help. It costs your nerves as well as your bank account to rip out peeling or cracking kitchen countertops right after you’ve finished remodeling.

Your decisions about any kitchen counter remodeling project should focus on the cost, durability, and appearance characteristics of the countertop material. The most common countertop materials include ceramic (or porcelain), soapstone, granite, marble, laminates, concrete, stainless steel, wood (or butcher block), and engineered stone.
Evaluating Countertop Cost, Durability, and Ease of Maintenance
Many people choose ceramic or porcelain tile for quick and relatively inexpensive kitchen counter remodeling since tile is versatile in looks, maintenance, and installation. On the other hand, tile is easy to chip and damage, and it can look terrible if you don’t know how to install it properly.

Wood countertops are easy to maintain, but scar easily and can suffer extensive water damage. Marble and granite countertops can look fabulous in most kitchens, but they’re expensive to install. You’ll need an expert to help plan a counter remodeling project with these materials, and you won’t want to tackle installation on your own. The good news is stone can increase the value of your home considerably.

Take time evaluating the best solution for you. With careful budgeting and sound advice, you can finish off that kitchen remodeling campaign with a flourish.

10 Questions to Ask a Cabinet Refacing Company

The key to a successful cabinet refacing project is in selecting the right refacing company. Here are some questions to ask each cabinet remodeling contractor to ensure you are getting the best company for your project.

• How long has the cabinet refacing company been in business?
This will provide insight into the experience level of the company. Don’t turn away from new remodeling contractors, however, so long as the owners and employees have remodeling experience and a track record of satisfied customers.

• What types of cabinet door styles are available?
Look for a company that offers a wide range of styles and finishes.

• How quickly can you start my project?
While most good cabinet refacing companies are busy, they should be able to start your refacing project within a short period of time.

• How long will the project take?
Cabinet refacing is a relatively quick process and most contractors can complete the work within one week.

• Do you guarantee your refacing work?
A good refacing company will stand behind its work and be willing to answer questions or correct any mistakes.

• What cabinet finish options do I have?
There typically are three cabinet finish options – plastic laminates, rigid thermofoils (RTF) and wood veneer.

• Do you offer accessories to make the cabinets easier to use?
Many cabinet refacing companies offer accessories such as slide out drawers, Lazy Susan and other products.

• Do you provide free estimates?
Reputable remodeling contractors provide free estimates. The estimate should give details on the cabinet refacing to be done, the materials, timeline and cost.

• Can I check your references?
Any reputable cabinet refacing company will be happy to give you the names of previous customers. Avoid refacing companies that refuse or just provide written testimonials without giving you the chance to go see the cabinet refacing work in person.

• Can you do other remodeling work to help update my kitchen?
The answer for many cabinet refacing companies is yes. Many companies also replace floors and countertops, for example. If you are considering updating other parts of the kitchen design, ask about those services.

Refacing Blows the Doors Off New Cabinets

When you sit down to compare the cost of installing new cabinets in your kitchen versus refacing the ones you have the numbers tell a simple story: refacing is the cheaper solution.

Reface or Replace: The Cost of Kitchen Cabinets
When homeowners turn their remodeling plans to the kitchen the first thought is often, “these cabinets are the first things to go.” The fact of the matter is that when you add up the cost and trouble of completely replacing your kitchen cabinets your remodeling budget may leave little room for anything else. Refacing your cabinets saves you the bill of high kitchen cabinet prices and leaves money for other key remodeling items such as appliances, counter-tops, or new tile.

Breaking Down Your Kitchen Cabinet Project
When you get down to replacing your cabinets you’re looking at a hefty job. While it does afford you the opportunity to change the layout of your kitchen, is it worth the cost? Here’s how a typical project breaks down:
• Demolition: tearing out existing cabinets.
• Cost of new kitchen cabinets
• Cost of installation of new cabinets
• Rewiring electric as needed, as well as rearranging your plumbing.
• New counter-tops as a result of replacing your cabinets.
• The possible need for a new floor due to damage, or adding structural items such as a pony wall.

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