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Thinking about kitchen cabinet refacing? Here’s why we ended up choosing this option for the kitchen in our condo…
We bought our condo in Chicago with the idea that the kitchen cabinets had to go. We bought the condo in 2016, and the cabinets were original to the house, which was built in 2000. They were that yellowed, oak-y color that just felt very dated and blah. They cabinet doors also had some dings and dents on them.
When were deciding what to do about our ugly kitchen, we went back and forth between gutting the entire kitchen and starting fresh, or simply painting or refacing the cabinets and making do.
We painted kitchen cabinets a few years earlier, but we also didn’t have any kids back then. Now, with a baby, it felt like too much work for us. So, we whittled the options down to renovating the entire kitchen, and refacing kitchen cabinets.
After living in our home for a few months, and getting quotes from a few contractors, we decided to go with kitchen cabinet refacing from Home Depot. While I wouldn’t say it’s the perfect option for everyone, it’s right for us, and we love the results. Here’s a little bit more about the process and cost, plus why we chose it, and what we like (and don’t like) about our results.
First of all, what is kitchen cabinet refacing?
Kitchen cabinet refacing is essentially replacing the doors on your existing cabinets with something in a new style and color, and then adding a layer of veneer to your cabinet boxes so they match the new doors. The installers can also repair damaged cabinet boxes, and add new hardware. It’ll look like you replaced your cabinets, but it costs a lot less. It’s sort of like giving your old cabinets a facelift.
How much does kitchen cabinet refacing cost?
We did all of the upper and lower cabinets in our kitchen, and added one small lower cabinet, too. The cost was just under $9,000. However, the overall cost depends largely on how big your kitchen is. Since we live in a condo in the city, ours is pretty small. I’d expect to pay anywhere from $7,000-$25,000 depending on the size of your space and the options you choose.
It’s still a lot of money, but the results are major.
How long does kitchen cabinet refacing take?
Another of the big benefits of kitchen cabinet refacing is that is takes days instead of weeks or months. Our project started on Monday morning and was finished by Thursday evening. With a small baby at home, I can’t imagine being without a kitchen for longer than that.
Kitchen cabinet refacing: Why we chose this option
The cabinet boxes were in good shape, and we liked the layout
One of the most important factors that will determine if refacing is a good solution for your home is whether your cabinet boxes are in good shape and worth keeping, and whether your kitchen layout works for you. In our case, both of these things were true, so it was a good choice.
If your cabinet boxes are falling apart, or your kitchen layout is awkward or too small, you’d probably be better served by an overall remodel.
This isn’t our forever home.
This was one of the biggest deciding factors for us when choosing between kitchen cabinet refacing and replacing the whole thing. We live in the city with a 9 month old baby, and I have a feeling after we decide to have baby number two this place might get a little small.
Or maybe not, but we will want to move for a different school system. Or maybe we will move across the country again. Odds are good that this isn’t our forever home, so I don’t want to spend $40,000 on something I might only get to enjoy for a few years.
The price was right.
This was the other major deciding factor. As soon as we moved into our home at the end of June, the kitchen cabinets literally started to fall apart. The doors on three of the cabinets no longer shut at all and require a system of rubber bands in order to keep them closed.
We also realized one of the cabinet doors faces the wrong way which prevents some of the drawers from opening without first opening the cabinet door. We knew we had to do something about the cabinets, but we weren’t expecting to have to fix them so soon after moving in. After getting quotes for a complete remodel, we decided it would be out of our budget to redo the whole thing.
Refacing was a good solution that allowed us to solve both the functional and aesthetic problems of our home without spending tens of thousands of dollars.
It was easy.
I actually didn’t know much about refacing until I saw a display while I was at Home Depot one day (I know this is starting to sound like a sponsored post, but it’s not, I’m just trying to be informative in case you’re in the market for new cabinets!).
I was looking at the doors and was all “these are kind of nice!” At the time I was also debating just painting the cabinets, but that wouldn’t solve the functional issues we were having. I decided to schedule a consultation, and someone came out a couple of days later. We were able to get the cabinets done a few weeks after that.
It’s a greener solution!
I hate wasting things. Time, money, scraps of old fabric, beauty products, and kitchen cabinets. The cabinet boxes in our house are perfectly good. We weren’t planning on changing the layout of our kitchen, so it seemed wasteful to get all new cabinet boxes when ours worked just fine. And yes, if you’re wondering, Home Depot veneers your old cabinet boxes to match the new cabinet doors so everything looks seamless.
Home Depot Kitchen Cabinet Refacing Review
Overall, we were thrilled with the results from our Home Depot kitchen cabinet refacing. (Again, not a sponsored post). The cabinets were totally transformed.
Here’s the before photo again for reference:
A few things I loved about it:
The work was done in under a week
The cabinets literally look brand new
They were able to add a small cabinet to the end of our cabinets (underneath an island overhang)
They installed soft-close cabinets
You can choose from different cabinet styles, including windowed cabinets
What I didn’t like
The biggest thing that I didn’t like was that there were limited color options. Home Depot has a set selection of colors to choose from, so if you want a particular color or have your heart set on a particular kitchen cabinet trend, you’ll have to choose a different service. Most of the colors to choose from were neutrals, but they did offer a handful of colors at a higher price point.
[Update]: Additionally, after a year, some of the veneer started separating from the face of the cabinet, but it was mostly by the stove where it had gotten very hot. It was also covered by a warranty so we are able to get it replace.