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1320ms 02-23-2010 11:13 PM

Picking cabinets, does anything decent exist?
I'm in the middle of remodeling my parents house to rent out or sell. Right now I'm down to picking out some cabinets for the kitchen. I've been to all of the big box home improvement stores, originally I was set on Shenandoah cabinets from Lowes, considering the pretty decent pricing. After reading the horror stories I decided to stay away from both those and American Woodmark. Quoted out some Kraftmaid Cabinets from HD, and came in about $1500 higher, still within the price range though. Now I am reading tons of horror stories on those cabinets.

I'm going to run down to a few of the local small cabinet shops tomorrow, but is there any brand in particular to look for that has decent quality control for a decent price? I'm looking at spending up to $7500 on cabinets, L shaped 11'6" x 6'5" with a peninsula off the 11'6" side.

Mop in Hand 02-24-2010 12:28 AM

Kraftmaid are not bad cabinets for what they are: production made cabinets. I have installed alot worse. Diamond cabinets are also production, however for the price (cheaper than Kraftmaid) I feel it's a better deal considering all production box cabinets are not perfect. I have yet to install a cabinet made by Parr that hasn't been kicked around the warehouse, cheaper but not worth the headache of sending them back. Schuler makes a great cabinet but I've had a few problems with them also. It's a crap shoot.

oh'mike 02-24-2010 05:55 AM

I've had good experiences with Haas cabinets--Might be to pricey for your project --nice fit and finish.

Maintenance 6 02-24-2010 07:02 AM

I recently installed a large kitchen with Kraftmade cabinets and had no issues. Seemed pretty solid for a production cabinet. if you are going to rent it out, pick a solid cabinet. If you're selling, then I wouldn't get as picky. Top quality cabinets won't raise the resale value that much.

DangerMouse 02-24-2010 07:16 AM

To rent out or sell? Have you considered buying some used cabinets from a Habitat for Humanity ReStore?
Sometimes they don't even need refinishing! (new cabinets that the contractor mis-measured, maybe a small ding, etc.)
You could save thousands doing it yourself this way.
(Older cabinets will likely be better built than what they're making now as well)

1320ms 02-24-2010 09:03 AM

Mop in Hand - I'll have to price out schuler, this will be my first time installing cabinets, so a trouble free install is worth paying a little more

Maintenance6 - where did you get your Kraftmaid from? Seems from what I'm reading that people who buy through HD are a lot less satisfied than people who go through a smaller kitchen remodeler

oh'mike - I'll have to see if we have any local Haas distributors

DangerMouse - haven't considered that, but don't think I've got time for it either. Might consider that once I start tearing into my own kitchen.

I'm waiting on a call back about some Merrilat Masterpiece cabinets (same company as Kraftmaid) from a local cabinet shop, if pricing is comparable to HD Kraftmaid then I might go with those. I'll be going back to lowes tomorrow to get a price on the Diamond cabinets. The Shenandoah I priced out were all plywood construction, with the silent shut drawers and doors. Came in under $6000 I believe. We're looking for top dollar for this house (most likely going to rent it out until we can get it). I've actually considered for now just getting some off the shelf cabinets from HD and throwing a laminate counter top on, wont be too hard to replace a few years down the line and I could cut the initial remodel costs down dramatically. But I'd rather just do it once.

Maintenance 6 02-24-2010 12:45 PM

The Kraftmaid cabinets were from HD. I verified all of the measurements on their sheet before I'd let them order. They had everything right, and when all of it was delivered, everything fit right as well. Homeowner opted for factory made counter tops, which was a whole different story. 2 out of 3 fit great. #3 was a disaster, and that was a manufacturer's error, not HDs. On the third try, the counter company got it right, and #3 was the simplest one....... Go figure.

firehawkmph 02-24-2010 09:01 PM

Most of the cabinets I install are Kraftmaid. I think they are a decent cabinet for a production unit. If you spec out plywood sides they are very strong. When you deal with the box stores, most of their cabinet people aren't too versed in design. Find a cabinet supplier that has some decent design people. I get kraftmaid cheaper from a local supplier than what home depot sells them for, and a lot less headaches.
Also, I don't know where you were getting bad reviews on the different cabinets, but keep something in mind, most of the people writing in are doing so to complain. The ones that are happy you don't usually hear from. Take it all with a grain of salt.
Mike Hawkins:)

romona 02-26-2010 11:13 AM

I was reading through your post. I went through exactly what you are going through. It can be overwhelming making these decisions. We ended up looking at all those brands. Our final choice was, we ended finding a cabinet maker who made them for us and we stained them ourselves. (we had some problems but they remedied to our satisfaction.))
I also noticed you mentioned a peninsula. Our last home had one and personally I would never recommend it. Perhaps, because my kitchen was a bit smaller than the ones you see in the magazines. It really became a nuisance, and jutted out too much. I would suggest a sturdy portable kitchen island or cart. It would open up the kitchen, giving more space as well as giving you the option to roll it away in a corner. I use mine all the time. It's great for storage plus you an move it around. Now I read you are thinking of selling or renting. I think this would be a great selling feature. I think renters would also like the portability. More space in a kitchen is always a plus.
Please let us know when you make your decision.


golfgirl 03-02-2010 09:32 PM

We installed Thomasville natural cherry cabinets thru HD and they are beautiful. We have had no issues but it does depend who they have install them too. You can't pick and choose. We were lucky as our installer had his own business as well as working for them. Of course they are not custom cabinets, but we put many nice goodies such as a hidden garbage cabinet base, all soft close doors and drawers, fancy trim, a full pot storage cabinet base and a pull out floor spice rack to name a few. It is customized enough without overspending. We also have a beautiful granite top, Verde Butterfly, and Electrolux appliances. If I had done full custom cabinets, I would still have my old appliances. My kitchen is a total of over 20 feet of linear cabinet space and we packed a full size kitchen into a small space. It's all about choices and what you can afford.

1320ms 03-03-2010 11:16 PM

Settled on KraftMaid from HD, the designer I was working with at HD was a big help from the beginning, lives in the same small town as the house I'm working on, even offered up one of her son's to give me a hand installing if I need it. Shes been doing this job at HD for years from what I've seen. She assured me that if we got any cabinets with problems they would take care of it promptly. Ended up getting all plywood construction, furniture ends, flip out tray under the sink, 39" wall cabinets w/top molding.. and a few other goodies, in a cherry finish, for under $7400 w/tax and delivery. Had to negotiate the price down, as even after rebates and the free sink base we were still around $8k

Ivy 03-21-2010 05:33 PM

I choose to purchase RTA's (ready to assemble). I assembled the majority of them in 1 evening, real easy. Buying RTA's saved me $2000.00 on cabinets and these are all wood, instead of part particle board that Lowe's was trying to sell me for twice the price.

IcanDIY 06-08-2010 11:48 PM

My biggest issue with Thomasville is they have a horrid thing engineered wood "solid back" for hanging the cabinets. They make the cabinets unneccesarily heavy and are horrible to install. I prefer solid wood hanging rails or at least plywood. Higher end models in the same pricepoint will use a solid wood hanging system instead.

My greatest luck has been with kraftmaid which uses solid wood and the hanging is easy and sturdy. armstrong is decent and merillat is okay.

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