Face Your Kitchen
Your Guide to Kitchen Cabinet Refacing

Kitchen Cabinets: When to Replace, When to Reface

by Gabriel Traverso
Face Your Kitchen Columnist

Many Chicago homeowners, when considering a kitchen remodel, immediately think they'll need new kitchen cabinets -- especially with older homes. How do you know if simply refacing your cabinets is the right answer?

While kitchen cabinet prices range widely depending on the options, new cabinets can be very expensive. Chicago remodelers can try and save money with cheaper, ready-to-assemble cabinets where prices are low enough that you could possibly replace all your cabinets for around $1,000. However, with premium kitchen cabinets prices could be as high as $7,000 or more with installation fees. These prices could easily suck up the majority of your remodeling budget -- so how do you know if you even need new cabinets? When is refacing an option?

Older Home or New?

Homes built twenty and thirty years ago often have kitchen cabinets made of wood or plywood, decent construction possibly worth keeping. However, the cabinets in newer kitchens are often a combination of wood, plywood, and particle board -- with the latter being the primary material. Older kitchen drawers were often dovetailed and properly glued together, as opposed to today's drawers being stapled together.

Refacing Your Kitchen Cabinets

If you find you have well-built, sturdy cabinets in your kitchen, refacing them proves to be a far more cost-effective way to update the look and feel of your Chicago kitchen. Refacing your cabinets can be approached a couple of different ways. You can strip the paint and refinish your cabinets or replace the veneer on your boxes and buy new cabinet doors and hardware. Either choice could work well for your kitchen depending on the outcome that pleases you most and of course, your budget.

Before you decide to invest in expensive new cabinets, take a look at what you have now. If you live in an older Chicago home take a look at the construction of your cabinets and see if refacing them might be the better answer.

About the Author
Gabriel Traverso is a freelance writer, professional musician, and an artist. He resides with his family in Reno, NV.

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