Most homeowners agree that the kitchen is the heart of their homes and the room that sees the most traffic. It should be no surprise that homeowners want to give their kitchens a facelift when the cabinets become worn or outdated. Cabinet refacing has become a popular option over a major kitchen remodel in recent years, particularly since the materials and options have become more technologically advanced. The price also makes refacing a more appealing option, as the cost to reface is typically about half that of a total cabinet replacement.
Cabinet Refacing Cost
According to the National Association of Realtors, cabinet refacing costs about half the amount of a total cabinet replacement. For example, a professional cabinet refacing job that uses laminate in a standard 10′ x 12′ kitchen starts around $3,000-$5,000 – compared to $5,000-$7,000 for real wood veneer. For a larger project with high-quality veneer, the cost could rise to $7,000-$9,000 or more.
It is recommended that homeowners budget for additional items such as pulls, knobs and hinges, which (on the low-end) can run $2 to $4 per piece and up to $20 to $50 each on the high-end.
Cabinet Refacing is Right for You If:
- You plan to keep the same kitchen layout without moving any plumbing or electrical.
- You want to add or reconfigure some of your cabinets. (For example, if you are adding a wine rack or extra storage.)
Kitchen cabinets that are in good condition and have structurally sound cabinet boxes are the best candidates for refacing, when compared to those that are warped, have water damage or broken frames. Homeowners who are considering cabinet refacing can also replace the hinges, knobs, pulls and molding to complete the new look.
Pros of Refacing:
- Cabinet refacing is about half the cost of replacement
- No demolition is required
- Requires less time and hassle than total kitchen remodel (and can typically be completed within one week)
- Moisture, heat, scratch and impact-resistant
- Easy to clean and maintain
- Doors and drawers have uniform appearance
- “Green Solution” – you won’t be adding more to landfills
- Can match the cabinet boxes to the color of the doors and drawers
Cons of Refacing:
- Cabinet refacing won’t fix a bad kitchen design
- There’s a temptation to spend more on exotic veneer and hardware, which can increase the cost
Choosing the Right Material for Your Cabinets:
There are two options for choosing the right cabinet refacing material: Wood Cabinets and Medium-Density Fiberboard (MDF) with a Rigid Thermofoil (RTF) finish.
Wood Cabinets – When choosing wood cabinets for your refacing project, you have some decisions to consider. First, you must choose between type, color, grain and whether or not you want cabinets made from a “hard” or “soft” wood. Hardwood cabinets (like cherry, oak and maple) are derived from broad-leaf trees, whereas softwoods come from needle-bearing evergreen trees (like pine). Keep in mind that wood cabinets may have an inconsistent look due to their naturally occurring grain patterns. If cabinets are not sealed or finished, over time they may be prone to warping if exposed to heat and moisture. View Wood Cabinet Color Options from Granite Transformations.
Medium-Density Fiberboard (MDF) – MDF cabinets are made from wood particles and resin. The process consists of uniformly separating the particles to make a fine, consistent material that is cooked and pressure steamed. It is then bound with an adhesive and heat pressed, producing a solid board. The result is a material that is smooth, uniform, extremely dense and free of knots and grain patterns. This makes it a great substitute for solid wood in various applications, as well as being a perfect choice for painting since there are no wood grain characteristics. MDF has become the most popular composite material in recent years on account of its versatility, as it is used in furniture, shelving and decorative molding.
- Rigid Thermofoil (RTF) – RTF is a laminate, consisting of flexible sheets of vinyl film that is bonded to MDF, using high heat and pressure. The result is a durable product with the look of natural wood with grain texture built right in. Rigid Thermofoil cabinetry has been praised by “Better Homes and Gardens” as the “40-year kitchen” and has become the most popular choice for homeowners who dream of beautiful kitchen cabinets (without the care and maintenance required for natural wood cabinets). Rigid Thermofoil holds up well in high humidity with regular cleaning. Should it get damaged with deep scratches, chips or dents, however, it will lose its resistance to moisture and can begin to fall apart quickly. View MDF/RTF Cabinet Color Options from Granite Transformations.
Remember, what’s old can look new again! We invite you to visit us at granitetransformations.com today to register for a free in-home consultation and see how quick and easy it can be to give your kitchen the new look you’ve been dreaming of – without the cost and downtime of a total kitchen renovation.
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