Kitchen Cabinets Refacing

Your kitchen can get old and appear worn out in a short number of years. Colors (and styles) both change, so what you liked a decade ago may not still be favorable. You can reface your cabinets to change the overall appearance and feel of the kitchen.

Refacing can involve merely painting existing cabinets and drawer fronts as well as changing the hardware, or it can be as extensive as stripping the cabinet doors and covering them with veneer or other decorative materials. As well, refacing can involve replacing all the cabinet doors with a new style employing new materials.

You have the option of refacing the cabinets on your own, or you can hire someone else to do the labor for you. Various companies do cabinet refacing somewhat differently. Some make new drawers and doors for the current cabinets but some clean, put in new veneers and replace hardware. If you decide to hire someone, be sure about what exactly their services are and what their price will be.

Should you replace or reface your cabinets?

It’s probably true that your cabinets are made of wood or plywood and constructed well, if your home was constructed 20 years ago or more. New cabinets will most likely be made of a combination of solid wood, plywood, particle board and MDF, unless you have the money to purchase semi- or custom wood cabinets. High quality construction, such as rabbets and dovetails, are common in older drawers. Usually they were very deep or wide. Quality like this can cost you in the end. You could try refacing if you have the right floor plan and enough storage.

The company that you hire to do the refacing will give you an kitchen estimate and an overview of their offered services. Of course, they have their best interests in mind, so it would benefit you to obtain some other estimates. You can always compare the cost of hiring someone versus doing the work on your own.

Of course, if you have low quality cabinets in your current kitchen, made of materials such as particle board with a laminate finish, you may be better off replacing them. There are obviously some cabinets that just need to be replaced, as in the case of rotted wood and bowed shelves. You can clean your current cabinets very well, and paint them all over, if you can’t afford to replace your cabinets in the near term. Then you can begin to save money to remodel your kitchen.

Prior to contacting a contractor for an estimate, perform a thorough inspection of your cabinets. Some companies are more inclined to reface cabinets that are in bad condition, while others will suggest you replace the cabinets no matter what. You may not be persuaded to spend as much money on home improvements you don’t need if you know your cabinets are in pretty good shape.

Replacing cabinets can be much more expensive than refacing them in your kitchen. It costs 60-70% more to replace your current cabinets with cabinets of the same quality, making refacing a very desirable choice.

Generally most kitchens contain approximately 15 cabinets, and with cabinets priced at $500 each, it can easily go over $7,500 just for the cabinets. Keep in mind that the remodeling cost will probably place the actual cost of the cabinets and installation fees as 50% of the full budget.

There are many factors that determine the expense, including type of veneer and hardware, moldings and trim, and countertops.

Is it possible to do this yourself?

If you have completed projects in your home

before, you may be capable of refacing cabinets, installing moldings and countertops. Finding the materials, hardware and supplies needed is easy. Although you will need to plan and be organized with your approach, it really isn’t complex work. You could lower your costs considerably if you do the work yourself, even if you factor in some rework.

Doing it yourself is relatively inexpensive if you don’t need to reconfigure the arrangement.

Make sure you know what your limits and capabilities are. You may be able to complete all or part of the job yourself if you are handy with tools and equipment.

If you are not at all handy and get frustrated easily, it may be worth it to just hire someone else.

When should you hire a professional?

Hiring a kitchen remodeling contractors with good references will more than likely give you the best value for your dollar. Your evaluation of a vendor should include a check of their references, a comparison of their estimate in relation to those of others, and a review of their contract with regard to work included, terms, conditions and warranties. To compliment the references, request to see older projects that the professional completed as well. Look closely at the cabinets to determine if the glue is still intact, and the cabinets contact neatly at the seams.

Beware of lead-based painted cabinets in older homes! If you find that you have cabinets that have been painted with lead=based paints, be sure you pick a company that has experience dealing with the dust and particles that will result during the remodeling.

A badly refaced cabinet could be worse looking that simply repainting. Prior to signing an agreement for the job, take your time as necessary to check out each firm. Many companies, both large and small, would be glad to take on your project, but beware of disreputable companies that are interested in taking your money and providing you with poor results. You can be sure to get a better deal by doing a little research into various businesses.