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How to Choose Kitchen Cabinets

Adding style or color to your kitchen cabinets is a great way to spruce up your living space.

You don’t have to spend a lot of money to accomplish your goal. Some experts recommend spending up to 20 percent of your home’s value on any remodeling project. For a home valued at $100,000, for instance, homeowners might spend up to $20,000 on updating the kitchen. Of that money, about 40 percent should be spent on cabinets alone.

Why spend so much money on cabinets? Because they are the focal point of your kitchen. They must be attractive and useful.

Anyone planning to sell their home should purchase high quality cabinets that will appeal to a wide selection of buyers. But if you plan on spending more than eight years in your home, put your family’s tastes and priorities first.

Custom-Built Cabinets

Most homeowners agree that custom-built cabinets are an excellent choice.

The best part is that you can choose any style you want. The only limitation is your imagination. You can specify the color, hinges, rollers and even have special finished applied to the cabinets.

For this option, it is essential to work with a professional. Ask your friends and family if they know experienced cabinetmakers. Tradesmen in your area will likely know cabinetmakers. If you are using a contractor, solicit him or her for recommendations.

Visit two or three custom builders in your area and discuss your preferences. Ask to see their work. Be sure to outline your budget and specifications. A professional will give you a reasonable timeframe. You may need to live for an extended period of time without a kitchen, and that can be difficult.

Take a look at special finishes. Some people adore the antique or distressed look. Other people prefer to have the cabinets match other colors in the kitchen. Your custom cabinet builder should apply the finishes himself.

Check the quality of the materials the builder is using. Hinges, heavy duty slides and ¾-inch solid wood should have a lifetime guarantee.

You may need to change the cabinets once you have ordered them. Ask about the consequences should this situation arise. There may be an additional fee to make a change after a period of time.

Get everything in writing. Most cabinetmakers are honest and hardworking people, but a contract should stipulate what is expected of both parties. Do not sign anything until you understand the contract and have read it completely.

Pre-Built Cabinets

When you are on a tight budget, consider pre-built cabinets. You can still receive quality for a little less cost.

First, look for pieces made with real wood. Particle board is not as durable. The cabinets must also feature solid construction. There should be warranties on the hardware, slides and other components.

Choose a company that has a long track record. You should be able to find them if the need arises.

Quality companies will also allow you to order special sizes. They will be slightly more expensive, you will appreciate the results.

Regardless of the choices you make, always choose to purchase cabinets from a company that has been in business for a long time. They should be good at what they do. Look at their previous work and get in touch with previous customers. Once you do this legwork, there is no doubt you will be happy with the results.

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