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Nov 14, 2013

Cheap Kitchen Remodeling? Think again

What should you be concerned about when responding to an ad that seems to be the perfect price tag for your budget?

Many companies advertise a well below average price tag for a standard kitchen remodeling project. They do this with only one intention; to lure you into an agreement that will end up costing you a lot more than advertised. Is this really the kind of company you want to do business with? why or why not? What are some of the implications of working with such companies? Let’s talk about that.

Cheap quality materials

Cheap Kitchen Remodeling

This shouldn’t surprise you at all. The quality of materials used in these projects that promote cheap deals are awful (to say the least). For example, the cabinet box could just be coated particleboard instead of actual furniture-grade wood or even Medium-density fiberboard (MDF). It may look nice for a while, but keep in mind that eventually it will warp and sag, regardless of how much you care for them.

Granite countertops are another area you can be affected by. Using cheap granite can be a horrible experience, because you’re the one that will have to stare at them every single day. Edges on granite that do not have a proper polish can easily be waxed or sprayed with different chemicals that will make it shine… but only for a while. You may even end up with granite tops that have cracks - another sign of poor quality. Don't forget to also consider the experience level of the installers performing the job.

Hidden Costs

The best way to drive the price down on these projects is to limit your options. That is, for example, if you want to adorn your countertops with any other edge besides a plain square one, you’ll have to pay extra. Similarly, if you want your sink to be under-mounted, well, that’s also an additional cutout charge. Even worse would be to end up with multiple seams in your countertops that don't even match the flow pattern! Don’t get me wrong of course; these choices really depend on your taste, and the actual look and feel that you – personally – are looking for in your home. But I know I’m always bothered when I see offers I respond to, only to find out there are hidden costs.

Holding you hostage

It may sound a little harsh, I know. But the truth is for these companies to make any money, they must hold you hostage. This is where change-orders come into play.

Change orders can be said to be a standard part of any home remodeling project. The beauty of proper planning is that you have a road-map with the flexibility to find a better route along the way (improve on the original plan). It really isn’t uncommon for home owners to change their mind about something. But taking advantage of situations where the customer changed their mind about a specific type of material to use, or going from a drop-in to an undermount sink, etc, is absolutely appalling to me.

Next time you feel drawn by one of these “special deals”, I would just try to stay calm and “think again”. Depending on your specific project and needs, it may very well suite you. But start by asking yourself some of the things we covered in this article. Don’t be scared to automatically assume there are flaws with the offer. Believe me; this will help you avoid disappointments (and stress) later.

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