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Cost to Install Kitchen Cabinets 2021 (Average Price Guide)

kitchen cabinets-pixabay

kitchen cabinets-pixabay

Cabinets are just about the most necessary part of any kitchen. If you are planning to install new kitchen cabinets, expect to pay around $5,000. Ouch! Because of how functional they are in a kitchen, there is no way to avoid them, no matter how expensive they may be.

Luckily, kitchen cabinet installation prices do have an extensive range. There are a variety of factors that impact the overall cost. Read on to learn about these factors so you can get the best kitchen cabinets based on your budget.divider 4

A Note on Kitchen Cabinet Estimates

Before jumping into the average price, we need to talk about how kitchen cabinet prices are estimated. Most of the time, kitchen cabinets are estimated by linear foot. This measurement is pretty straightforward. It measures a 12-inch linear line. Throughout this guide, we refer to the linear foot often. Whenever we do, this is what we are referring to.

Most estimators use your kitchen’s linear footage to estimate the cost. That’s because it determines how much materials are needed. This measurement can also tell installers about how long it will take them to finish the entire project.

installation-of-kitchen-unit_brachostudio_shutterstock
Credit: brachostudio, Shutterstock

Average Cost to Install Kitchen Cabinets

In 2021, the average cost to install a kitchen cabinet is $5,158, but the price ranges from $1,842 to $8,597. Most people find this wide range incredibly shocking. After all, a cabinet is a cabinet, right? Not in the slightest. There are various cabinets to choose from, ranging from ready-made cabinets to custom cabinets, all of which use different materials and labor.

Average Cost Per Linear Foot

Stock Semi-Custom Custom
Materials $50 to $200 $75 to $400 $300 to $750+
Labor $50 to $100 $75 to $250 $200 to $450+
Total $100 to $300 $150 to $650 $500 to $1,200+
  • Stock or Ready-Made Cabinets

The cheapest option is a stock or ready-made cabinet. These cabinets will cost about $55 to $600 per linear foot installed. Whenever you purchase these cabinets, they may already be assembled or finished.

The downside of the ready-made cabinet is that you might have trouble finding one that fits your kitchen. This is especially true if you have an odd-shaped or old home. Those with unique tastes may also find it difficult to find a cabinet that matches their exact preferences.

  • Semi-Custom Cabinets

Semi-custom cabinets are named as such because they come in ready-made sizes, but they are more versatile than stock options. These cabinets will range between $150 and $900 per linear foot installed.

These cabinets are the happy medium between stock and custom cabinets. They are still affordable, much like the stock options, but they offer more versatility and flexibility. This means that those with odd-shaped kitchens or unique styles will have more options but won’t break their budget.

  • Custom Cabinets

Custom cabinets are easily the most expensive. You will likely need to pay between $500 and $1400 per linear foot installed. These options are so expensive because they are typically hand-built by skilled carpenters.

Obviously, the downside of custom cabinets is that they are highly expensive. Still, you will be able to get a beautiful finish that matches your exact wants, kitchen dimensions, and style.

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Size

The size makes a big difference in the cost of kitchen cabinet installation. That’s because a bigger kitchen will have larger linear footage. As a result, it will require more materials and time for installation. Here is the average cost based on average kitchen sizes:

Square Footage Cost
Small kitchen 70 $1,700 to $11,000+
Average kitchen 120 $2,200 to $14,000+
Large kitchen 200+ $4,000 to $26,000+
kitchen-pixabay
Credit: mgattorna, Pixabay

Material

Material is another important factor when it comes to estimating the price of your cabinet installation. Today, there are many materials to choose from. For ease of reading, we have compiled the most popular options below:

Material Types Average Cost
MDF $1,000 to $2,500
Wood veneer $4,000 to $9,000
Laminate $5,000 to $8,000
Thermofoil $7,000+
Hardwood $6,000 to $25,000+

divider 8Other Factors that Impact Cost

In addition to the cabinet type, size, and material, installation and additional painting will make the cost go up even more.

  • Labor and Installation

Most of the price for installing kitchen cabinets comes from the materials. Still, labor is important to remember. The average cost to install new kitchen cabinets costs right around $5000. Of that $5000, only about $1000 of it comes from the installation. The remaining $4000 is generally due to the materials.

The average installation cost is between $50 and $70 per linear foot. Labor and installation can range from $400 to over $1,000. This cost may increase if the installers are removing your old cabinets as well.

  • Painting

You can easily find kitchen cabinets that are finished. However, you may stumble upon an item that is not finished, which means you will have to pay for it to be painted. The average for painting kitchen cabinets ranges between $1,200 and $7,000 extra.

How to Save Money

Kitchen cabinets are incredibly expensive. Unfortunately, there is not much you can do about this price, other than getting crafty. You can save money by becoming a DIYer when you can. This may include refacing or refinishing your old cabinets. This will save you a whole lot of money and give you new-looking cabinets at the same time.

You can look online for many DIY ideas for refinishing your cabinets. If you don’t have any cabinets to start with, you can look at thrift shops. In the worst-case scenario, buy cheap stock cabinets and finish them yourself. IKEA is a great place to start. This store offers many affordable yet stylish options.

If you aren’t crafty, you can save money by choosing base cabinets instead of wall ones. Base cabinets with open shelving are way more affordable than closed wall cabinets.divider 1

Conclusion

Once your kitchen cabinets are done, you can think about adding a few useful appliances to finish the look. A good quality water filter is a great item to start with. Here we recommend looking at the Big Berkey Water Filters or the Aquasana filters.

Also, even though cabinets look pretty basic, they can be very expensive. With the average kitchen cabinet installation costing around $5,000, expect your cabinet installation to cost you a pretty penny. Of course, there are some things you can do to cut this price if need be.

A word for the wise: functionality is more important than appearance. If you are on a tight budget, all that matters is that you have sturdy cabinets that organize all your kitchen tools!


Featured image credit: u_jup1hbno, Pixabay

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