Kitchen Cabinet Resurfacing Cost: Refresh Your Space Without Breaking the Bank
Looking to update your kitchen cabinets without the expense of a full replacement? Cabinet resurfacing can transform the look by refacing or refinishing the existing boxes and doors. But what option makes the most financial sense?
Refacing For An Affordable Facelift
Cabinet refacing keeps the existing cabinet box structure intact but replaces all visible surfaces with new doors, drawer fronts, and hardware. This facelift approach is ideal if your cabinets are solid but looking tired or dated.
After removing old doors and hardware, new door surfaces are installed directly onto the cabinet frames. This saves time and money by avoiding a full tear out. The results can give your kitchen a completely fresh, updated look with just new door styles and finishes.
What Refacing Costs
For a small 10×10 kitchen, expect to pay $2,000 to $3,500 for refacing. The cost increases to $3,000 to $5,000 range for a medium 15×15 kitchen. Large 25×20+ kitchens run $5,000 to $8,000+.
Factors impacting the price include:
- Labor rates for installation
- Door material like solid wood, plywood, or MDF
- Door style – flat panel, raised panel, Shaker, etc.
- Total number of cabinet doors/drawers
- Upgraded hardware selections
Pros and Cons of Refacing
- More affordable than new cabinet replacement
- Faster installation time than refinishing
- Wide range of customizable looks with new doors
- Limited changes to interior cabinet structure
- Cost of purchasing all new door surfaces
Refurbishing With Refinishing
Cabinet refinishing involves stripping doors down to bare wood and applying new stain, paint, or another finish. This transforms both the interior and exterior of your cabinets for a completely custom look.
The process starts by removing all doors and hardware. After thorough sanding and prep work, your choice of stain, paint, or glaze can be applied for dramatic change. Distressed finishes are also popular for a worn-in vintage style.
How Much Refinishing Costs
A small 10×10 kitchen will run $2,000 to $4,000 for refinishing. For medium 15×15 kitchens expect to pay $4,000 to $7,500. Large projects can cost $8,000 to $12,000+ with more labor and finishing products needed.
Biggest factors affecting the price:
- Labor rates and hours required
- Number of finish coats needed
- Stain vs paint (stain is generally more affordable)
- Distressed finish adds cost
Pros and Cons of Refinishing
- Fully custom look changing both exterior and interior
- Unlimited color options with stains and paints
- Mess and dust from sanding and stripping
- Matching existing colors takes skill
In most cases refacing has a clear cost advantage over refinishing. Homeowners can expect to pay at least $500 to $2,500 more for a full refinishing job depending on kitchen size.
Key factors that increase costs for both options include:
- Large number of cabinets
- Premium materials like solid wood doors
- Distressed finishes requiring glazes
- Hiring a professional contractor vs DIY
For many homeowners on a tight budget, refacing provides an affordable kitchen facelift. Refinishing costs more upfront but allows heavier customization if desired.
Carefully weigh your goals, available time, and resources to determine if a simple refacing or full refinishing better fits your kitchen and budget needs.