By Dan Fritschen

kitchen cabinets

Cabinets by Powell Woodworks


Cabinets are frequently the most expensive component of a kitchen remodel.  So to get an estimate of the cost to remodel a kitchen knowing the cost of the cabinets is a great first step.


The cost of kitchen cabinets varies a great deal by both the design, quality and where you buy them.


Ready to assemble (RTA) cabinets are usually the least expensive strictly based on price -but be sure to include assembly of the cabinets which can easily take longer than installing the cabinets.  Also if you are comparing prices make sure you compare apples to apples, in this case the cabinets are built of the same material and have the same door design.  It isnt reasonable to compare a flat MDF door with a solid hardwood door with recessed details.  Also consider the construction – is particle board going to be acceptable to you or will you only accept plywood.  Be vary careful with particle board cabinets around the plumbing – particle board and disintegrate if they get wet because of a plumbing leak.


RTA can cost $50 to $150 per linear foot.


Factory built cabinets are widely available off the shelf at big box stores and by special order.  The quality of these can vary greatly depending on the manufacturer and how much you pay.  These prebuilt cabinets save you the time of assembly and are often sturdier than the RTA cabinets factory built cabinets can be glued and screwed when assembled.


Factory built cabinets can cost $100 to $300 linear foot.


Finally there are custom built cabinets which usually are custom built boxes and frames and doors that are purchased and then the entire finished cabinet is stained and finished to meet your specification.  Custom cabinets are great since they can be built precisely to your requirements.   That ability to be customized is the big advantage of locally built cabinets.  The quality is not necessarily better than the cabinets built in a factory.  And interestingly, the cost of the custom cabinets isnt necessarily more than the factory built cabinets so it is important to ensure a true apples to apples comparison if you are making this decision.

Custom built cabinets can cost from $150 to $400 per linear foot.