The average cost of a complete kitchen renovation is around $11,400 to $28,850. This large gap in cost is most often due to cabinetry. Replacing your cabinets often costs much more than refacing them. If your cabinets are in good shape, there is no reason to completely replace them.
$10,000 to $15,000 Kitchen Remodel
If you would prefer to stick to the lower range of the national average for kitchen remodels, you will most definitely want to do a kitchen cabinet refacing. A less expensive kitchen remodel often includes the following:
- Updating the kitchen sink and faucet.
- Replacing your kitchen countertops with inexpensive laminate.
- Note: If you dislike laminate, visit your local stone yard. They often have leftover pieces of stone from previous jobs that you can buy for a fraction of the cost of a brand new slab.
- Installing a backsplash.
- Refacing the kitchen cabinets.
- Upgrading appliances (oven, dishwasher, and refrigerator).
- Giving the walls and ceiling a fresh coat of paint.
- Installing new, energy-efficient lighting.
Another way to keep costs down is to hunt down the materials for the renovation. Contractors charge for labor, and that can include purchasing materials. If you do the legwork first, you can cut labor costs later.
Kitchen Cabinet Veneers
A major bonus to a kitchen cabinet refacing over a replacement is that it takes much less time, about two to four days. You do not have to wait for a construction crew to demolition the existing cabinets. Plus, you do not have to wait for custom cabinets to be built and assembled before installation.
The cost to reface cabinets ranges between $4300 and $9050 on average. Where your cost falls depends a great deal on the size of your kitchen. The more cabinets that need to be refaced, the more it will cost. Another cost-determining factor is materials.
There are three veneers available for kitchen cabinet refacing: Rigid thermofoils (RTF), laminate, and wood veneer. RTF is the most economical option and it can be formed to fit any style of cabinet. They have fewer solid color options than laminate and the imitation-wood options are not convincing up close. However, they are very durable and from a distance they look authentic.
Laminate comes in a variety of colors and designs. They are not malleable like RTF, so you can only install them on flat cabinet doors. They are also very durable and affordable. Laminate refacing options are the most popular as they are wallet-friendly and come in numerous designs and patterns that can complement any kitchen.
Wood veneers are the most expensive, but they have the most wow-factor. This type of veneer comes in nearly any type of wood you could want. Wood costs 10 to 25 percent more than the other two veneers and the construction crew will need to seal it to protect it from moisture. Once sealed, it is very durable.
How to Reface Kitchen Cabinets
Kitchen cabinet refacing requires a number of steps. First, the construction crew removes the doors and drawer fronts. Then they will rough up the cabinet frames and panels so the new veneer can adhere properly. Once the veneer is glued or nailed in place, any nail holes and seams are filled to make the cabinet surface continuous. They also panel any exposed cabinetry undersides as well as replace the base cabinet’s toe kick to make your cabinets look uniform. Once this is complete, they install new cabinet doors, drawers, and hardware.
Refacing your cabinets instead of replacing them is a more economical and eco-friendly option. It is also much faster than a complete cabinet tear-down, so your kitchen remodel can come to life on a more expedient schedule. If your cabinets are in good shape, you can save yourself nearly half the cost of replacing them by refacing them instead.