How To Drastically Cut Your New Kitchen Cabinet Installation Costs
Installing new kitchen cabinets can be an expensive home renovation project. With the average cost to install running from $6,000 to $12,000, many homeowners find the price tag shocking.
But there are ways to significantly lower the cost of your kitchen cabinet installation and make it more affordable. By implementing smart design and material choices, along with savvy project planning, you can slash thousands off your total bill.
Choose Affordable Cabinet Materials
One of the biggest factors affecting cabinet costs is the material they are constructed from. Opting for more budget-friendly materials over premium options can lead to huge savings.
Laminate cabinets are the most wallet-friendly choice, available for $75-150 per linear foot installed. Other affordable options include wood veneers and thermally fused melamine.
On the higher end, solid wood cabinets and stainless steel can drive costs upwards of $500+ per linear foot. Carefully weigh the pros and cons of materials to balance cost savings with your aesthetic and functional needs.
Affordable Cabinet Material Options
- Wood veneers
Premium Cabinet Materials
- Solid wood
- Stainless steel
Opt for Simple Door Styles
Along with materials, the style of cabinet doors you choose will affect pricing. More ornate, customized options come at a premium.
To save money, opt for simple door styles like shaker, slab, or minimalist designs. Shaker-style cabinets with a clean, sparse look can trim thousands off your bottom line cost.
Affordable Cabinet Door Styles
Premium Cabinet Door Styles
- Raised panel
- Glass inset
Know Your Total Cabinet Measurements
Cabinet costs are directly tied to total linear feet. Accurately measuring your space is key for getting quotes.
Map out your entire kitchen and take detailed measurements. Mark windows, doors, and appliances to subtract from total cabinet footage needed. Understanding the scope of your project helps secure accurate pricing.
Tips for Measuring
- Measure in linear feet, not cubic feet
- Note window and door placements
- Map appliance locations
- Factor odd angles and corners
With precise measurements in hand, you can get reliable quotes to compare costs across contractors.
Consider DIY Installation
Labor accounts for 20-40% of total cabinet install costs. Doing it yourself can lead to major savings, but requires skills.
Ensure you have carpentry experience before tackling a DIY install. You’ll need tools, time, patience and help. But if done properly, you can pocket the labor fees a contractor would charge.
DIY Install Considerations
- Requires carpentry skills
- Time consuming
- Need tools and helpers
- Saves 20-40% on labor
Get Quotes From Multiple Contractors
Never go with the first bid. Get detailed quotes from at least 3-4 pre-screened, licensed cabinet contractors.
Compare itemized costs for materials, labor fees, total install pricing and project timelines. Go with the most affordable qualified pro to maximize savings.
Contractor Quote Tips
- Get 3-4 quotes
- Compare materials and labor
- Check credentials
- Ask about potential added costs
Adjust Your Cabinet Layout
Modifying your cabinet layout and reducing total units needed cuts costs. Optimize your layout for fewer cabinets.
Also, choose standard cabinet sizes. Odd custom sizes mean pricier customization fees. An optimized layout with standard sizing saves.
Cost-Saving Layout Tips
- Reduce cabinet count
- Use standard sizes
- Maximize corners
- Strategic placement
Demolish Existing Cabinets Yourself
If demolishing old cabinets, do this work yourself to avoid added labor fees.
Safely removing old cabinets is labor intensive. But with some demolition know-how and elbow grease, you can handle this yourself and pocket the savings.
DIY Demo Tips
- Wear safety gear
- Disconnect utilities
- Remove doors and shelves
- Take down boxes carefully
Install During Off-Peak Seasons
Avoid summer cabinet installs when contractor demand is highest. Opt for off-peak seasons like spring and fall when pricing dips 10-15%.
Contractors offer more discounts during slower seasons to fill schedules. Time your install right to capitalize on seasonal savings.
Best Installation Seasons
Summertime brings peak demand and higher pricing. Save by installing in shoulder seasons instead.
Choose Stock Cabinets Over Custom
Custom cabinets are built from scratch to your specifications, at a steep premium. Stock cabinets are mass manufactured and more budget friendly.
If you can work with standard cabinet sizing and designs, stock is the way to go. This avoids costly customization fees.
Custom vs. Stock Cabinets
- Custom: Pricier, made to your specs
- Stock: Cheaper, pre-manufactured
Installing new kitchen cabinets represents a major investment. But implementing smart design, material and installer choices can lead to significant cost savings.
Focus on affordable finishes, efficient layouts and qualified yet competitively priced contractors. And don’t be afraid to tackle demo and basic install tasks yourself. Follow these tips to realize your dream kitchen while sticking to your budget.