When you want to enhance your kitchen, the cabinets are a great place to start. However, renovating can come with a hefty price tag. In fact, cabinets are typically the single most expensive item in any kitchen remodel. Instead, consider something different: reface your cabinets instead. 

Refacing cabinets is an easier and less expensive option than a full remodel. During this process only your existing doors and drawer fronts are removed and discarded. New ones are then custom-made, painted or stained, and attached to the existing cabinet boxes. While the boxes are left in place, they’re also refurbished and painted or stained to match the color you choose. 

The process to reface cabinets is therefore faster, easier, and far less expensive compared to a complete renovation. Here’s a breakdown of the costs:

Cost #1: Demolition & Set Up 

When you’re renovating your kitchen and replacing your existing cabinets with new ones, there’s a cost for the demolition aspect of the job. It can run into the thousands and is substantially more messy than simply refacing the cabinets. 

In addition, since you’re living in your home during this process, the company you use will need to erect a containment barrier to keep dust from making its way into the rest of the home. Protection must also be put down to ensure the floors you have in your kitchen don’t get scratched or damaged. Finally, since full remodels take weeks – rather than days like refacing – you’ll need a temporary kitchen set up somewhere. This all adds up to more costs and a higher overall price. 

Cost #2: Labor 

The final tally for the labor depends on where you live and the size of your kitchen. However, it’s going to be higher when you’re choosing a total renovation rather than simply refacing your cabinets. 

For a complete remodel, you have to rip out your old cabinets, build entirely new ones, and install them. Making a solid, beautiful cabinet, from the ground up, takes many more hours than simply crafting the doors and drawer fronts. It also takes more time and manpower to install them. This all translates into a higher labor cost.

Cost #3: Materials 

When it comes to the materials, the cost is greater when you’re remodeling. You’re not only replacing doors and drawer fronts, but entire boxes, as well. 

When you reface instead of replace, though, these boxes are simply repaired where needed if there are any scratches or divots. They’re then painted or stained to match your new doors and drawer fronts. 

What’s more is that when you reface, you can choose higher end materials you might not have been able to afford with a complete renovation. For instance, certain woods, like maple, are considered higher quality and priced to reflect this. If you can’t afford maple cabinets for a full remodel, refacing instead can often put these premium materials in reach. 

In addition, if you’re pulling out and replacing all of your cabinets, you’ll have the opportunity to change the layout of your kitchen. In the long run, this can increase functionality if you have a cramped space, but it also raises the final materials cost.

Cost #4: Unexpected Issues

When you completely renovate your cabinets rather than reface them, there are often unwanted surprises during the process. For instance, once cabinets are pulled out, you might notice the floors are uneven, or the space between your ceilings and the new cabinets is too tight. You can also discover issues behind or underneath your cabinets, such as with water or termite damage, mold, or problems covered up from previous remodels. 

These will have to be fixed or dealt with, further adding to the cost of a renovation. It’s why so many firms tell their clients to stay on the safe side and budget ahead – up to 10% – for change orders.

Cost #5: Replacing Countertops

When you’re fully renovating and ripping out cabinets, it’s next to impossible to save the countertops. Even if they’re made from a hard surface, like granite, there’s always a potential for a crack or other damage. You’ll therefore need to add the cost of new counters into your renovation budget. 

When you choose to reface your cabinets instead, you don’t need to replace counters unless you prefer to. Since the cabinet boxes are remaining in place, it’s simple to swap out your old drawer fronts and doors and replace them with new ones, all without damage to the countertops above. 

Why Reface Cabinets Instead of Replacing

The savings from cabinet refacing compared to replacing is often dramatic. The final tally all depends on the size of your space, the materials and design you choose, as well as any custom flourishes. However, in most cases, refacing comes in at around 30-50% less when compared with replacing. 

When you choose to reface, you can still get quality doors and drawer fronts, made from real wood, such as oak, cherry, or maple, for just a fraction of what it would cost for a full remodel. You’ll also have endless choices in terms of colors and stains, as well as hardware and finishing techniques, like antiquing. 

Not only will you improve how your kitchen looks, but also achieve this transformation much faster. It can take several weeks to remove your old cabinets and install new ones. Meanwhile, you’re left dealing with a messy construction site when you need a functioning kitchen. 

Refacing instead takes around five or so days. This is less time you have to deal with disruption in your life. You can get back into the action faster and still use your kitchen while your new drawer fronts and doors are being made off-site. This makes it a far less stressful process for you and your family, all while allowing you to get cabinets that look brand new. 

If you want to reface cabinets instead of replace them – saving time, money and hassle – call your local N-Hance at (855) 642-6230 today for a FREE estimate.