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Old 11-08-2014, 11:23 AM
 
Location: Where the sun likes to shine!!
20,521 posts, read 27,010,489 times
Reputation: 88586

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My husband and I are in the process of redoing a house. Usually we go with stock kitchen cabinets from Lowe's or Home Depot and a stock countertop. I know…most of you are cringing but these things really don't matter to me. This time I may try something new. My DH and I just helped my stepdaughter with her kitchen remodel and it came out fantastic. She used RTA cabinets and a high definition laminate. She has been driving me crazy to go with real wood cabinets.


I have been pricing things and this is what I come up with:

Right now…
Stock cabinets on sale……..$2600.00
High Definition laminate…..$1600.00

Hampton Bay Cognac

Info on those cabinets…
Hampton Bay 30x34.5x24 in. Hampton Base Cabinet with Ball-Bearing Drawer Glides in Cognac-KB30-COG at The Home Depot

And Bianco Romano Wilsonart:


Golden Romano is also an option:



OR….



RTA cabinets…York Charleston Saddle…….$4150.00(I found a very good local dealer)
Charleston Saddle RTA Kitchen Cabinets Discount



Level One granite…not sure which as I am not a huge fan of granite although I like the shine….$3600.00


For countertops that size I have to choose either laminate or granite if I want to stay under $50.00 a SQFT and that is from the local granite supplier.






So the cheaper kitchen would cost me $4200.00 for a 15x18 kitchen including an island.

The more expensive choices for the same kitchen would cost me $7750.00.


It's hard for me not to go with the $3550.00 savings on the cheaper kitchen and go with it. With that being said I really did think the RTA cabinets looked really nice. Nicer than I have ever had, lol.

If I went with the RTA cabinets and the high def laminate it would cost me $5750.00 which still saves me $2000.00 over the granite. Hmm…choices choices, lol.



So….if you could only choose one high end and one low end of "my" choices what would you do? Because I'm too frugal to do both cabinet and counter top high end

Last edited by ylisa7; 11-08-2014 at 11:42 AM..
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Old 11-08-2014, 11:45 AM
 
4,625 posts, read 7,804,202 times
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My wife and I are very money conscious and absolutely "Function before form" people. BUT, we also focus on overall value ~ an in that respect it's often FAR better to spend more money for a better quality item that lasts longer, is nicer to use, usually looks better, etc...

My "new" house (1930 built, kitchen remodel within the past few years) has 'Martha Stewart Living' cabinets from Home Depot. The other 3 homes I've owned, and all those I've lived in, have had whatever solid wood units that were installed in them originally. While all the rest were dated in looks, NONE of them showed any signs of falling apart like these less than 5 year old units. I blame the fact that they are mostly press-board (the most common damage are the holes used for shelf adjustment falling apart/crumbling). Maybe the prior owners were just REALLY hard on things (they sure as heck didn't clean and it seems as thought they didn't take care of things as well as we do), but when we have the funds to redo our kitchen it will be to put in solid wood items.

As for the granite... same house has it and I'm not a fan. For stone, I Vastly prefer soapstone (which my parents have), solid surface and wood/butcher block that's properly sealed. Granite and Quarts are right down there with Laminate in terms of what *I* want to live with. I'm sure glass, concrete and stainless steel are all there too. I like surfaces with a little more 'warmth', not so much harshness/hardness. If you don't love it, at least look into the options. I have to live with the stuff for now, and Maybe I'll change my mind about it, but as of right now I'd never buy the stuff.

Good luck!
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Old 11-08-2014, 11:52 AM
 
Location: Where the sun likes to shine!!
20,521 posts, read 27,010,489 times
Reputation: 88586
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian_M View Post
As for the granite... same house has it and I'm not a fan. For stone, I Vastly prefer soapstone (which my parents have), solid surface and wood/butcher block that's properly sealed. Granite and Quarts are right down there with Laminate in terms of what *I* want to live with. I'm sure glass, concrete and stainless steel are all there too. I like surfaces with a little more 'warmth', not so much harshness/hardness. If you don't love it, at least look into the options. I have to live with the stuff for now, and Maybe I'll change my mind about it, but as of right now I'd never buy the stuff.

Good luck!
Thank you.

I have even cheaper cabinets in my house in TN and they are 6 years old now and look the same as when I put them in. They were a bargain Bargains make me happy. I figure I will get another 15 years out of them and the styles will change by then

As far as counters…I will not spend more than $50.00 a SQFT so I am limited. Many of the stones are higher than that and concrete is really up there although I like the look. Good butcher block is pretty but very costly also. I also don't care for any wild variations in stone…it messes with my sense of analness
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Old 11-08-2014, 12:09 PM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
29,820 posts, read 65,508,366 times
Reputation: 34878
Quote:
Originally Posted by younglisa7 View Post
My husband and I are in the process of redoing a house.
Usually we go with stock kitchen cabinets...
I have to choose either laminate or granite if I want to stay under...

So….if you could only choose...
Sorry, but I lost track of your distinctions.

1) NEVER buy RTA cabinets.
There are inexpensive and US made choices (I'm liking Kitchen Kompact).

2) There's always someone around who can glue Formica onto plywood.
You can learn to do it yourself too.

I recently posted some pics of my current project:
//www.city-data.com/forum/37167967-post49.html
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Old 11-08-2014, 12:47 PM
 
Location: Johns Creek, GA
13,393 posts, read 51,351,021 times
Reputation: 15775
Since you put it that way-

I'd save on the cabinets. Even cheap-ass cabinets can support granite. Hell, even cardboard can support granite if its constructed correctly. It's much easier/cheaper to dress-up cheap cabinets with the granite selection, hardware, flooring, and backsplash. Even the right wall color can help define- or even adding a glaze finish to the cabinets.

If there's any doubt that this will turn into one of your flips- go with the granite. Everybody goes bonkers for granite; but they hardly recognize a cheap cabinet from an expensive one.
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Old 11-08-2014, 01:06 PM
 
4,675 posts, read 8,098,072 times
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I spend the money on cabinets.

Countertops are easily changed. Not so much cabinets.
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Old 11-08-2014, 01:22 PM
 
Location: Wonderland
50,001 posts, read 39,777,061 times
Reputation: 71209
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian_M View Post
My wife and I are very money conscious and absolutely "Function before form" people. BUT, we also focus on overall value ~ an in that respect it's often FAR better to spend more money for a better quality item that lasts longer, is nicer to use, usually looks better, etc...

My "new" house (1930 built, kitchen remodel within the past few years) has 'Martha Stewart Living' cabinets from Home Depot. The other 3 homes I've owned, and all those I've lived in, have had whatever solid wood units that were installed in them originally. While all the rest were dated in looks, NONE of them showed any signs of falling apart like these less than 5 year old units. I blame the fact that they are mostly press-board (the most common damage are the holes used for shelf adjustment falling apart/crumbling). Maybe the prior owners were just REALLY hard on things (they sure as heck didn't clean and it seems as thought they didn't take care of things as well as we do), but when we have the funds to redo our kitchen it will be to put in solid wood items.

As for the granite... same house has it and I'm not a fan. For stone, I Vastly prefer soapstone (which my parents have), solid surface and wood/butcher block that's properly sealed. Granite and Quarts are right down there with Laminate in terms of what *I* want to live with. I'm sure glass, concrete and stainless steel are all there too. I like surfaces with a little more 'warmth', not so much harshness/hardness. If you don't love it, at least look into the options. I have to live with the stuff for now, and Maybe I'll change my mind about it, but as of right now I'd never buy the stuff.

Good luck!
I agree wholeheartedly with all of your post but especially the part about the soapstone. We recently installed soapstone counter tops in our kitchen and I couldn't be happier - we LOVE them. And they feel DIVINE. Super low maintenance as well. We were lucky enough to find a slab that had some green quartz embedded in it and it's fabulous looking.

It was no more expensive than mid range granite.

Granite is so 2010 in my opinion! Overused, overly shiny, overly patterned. I've had it in one house and I swore I'd never have it again.

OP, I'd go cheaper on the cabinets (not cheap as dirt, just that I'd cut corners there price wise) and invest more in your counter tops. Your counter tops will be what you work on every day, what you wash every day, what takes the punishment and wear. That being said, I'd be picky about how drawers function. Life's too short to deal with poorly aligned drawers.
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Old 11-08-2014, 06:11 PM
 
Location: Eastern Long Island
1,280 posts, read 4,390,721 times
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10.5 years ago we bought our current home which was a complete fixer. We went with stock cabinets from Home Depot that my DH customized to some degree and "custom Formica" from a fabricator. We spent $2500 for everything including Sheetrock, electrical, plumbing ( we had used appliances for a while). We also added an island a few years later.
It was what our budget could handle at that time. I host several large parties a year and I cook at least one meal everyday that I'm at home. Our kitchen still looks great and I don't think the parties we host or the food we serve is enjoyed less because the kitchen isn't HGTV ready.
I would like to change out the counters at some point but we are in the process of design a kitchen renovation for our vacation house so it's not happening any time soon.
I think you should go with whatever your comfortable with, if your planning on selling soon I agree with getting nice but less expensive cabinets and splurge on the counters. I also think most buyers will love granite and SS appliances.
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Old 11-08-2014, 06:33 PM
 
Location: Southwest Washington State
25,324 posts, read 16,297,798 times
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If cost is your chief driver in the remodel, then go with the laminate, but understand that it will not really look like granite. The edges and seams of the stuff will be the giveaway, and it won't wear the same.

However, you can use granite tiles, which are less pricey than the seamless granite tops. If you get a narrow epoxy grout, they will be beautiful and easy care. However, the epoxy grout is pricey. I have porcelain tile in my present kitchen, with narrow grout lines. We had the horizontal surfaces regrouted with epoxy, and they are indeed easy care with no staining.

Open your mind to other possibilities before deciding. Prior to this kitchen, for decades, I've always had laminate. It never wore well for me. It looks great for maybe 8 years, with conscientious care--at least in my experience.

Here is another thought: fake granite will always be fake. Even the best laminate will still never look like granite. IMO, it is better to get laminate that looks like laminate. If you want granite, get granite, at least in part of of your workspace.
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Old 11-08-2014, 06:37 PM
 
Location: Coastal Georgia
39,057 posts, read 48,006,211 times
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Lisa, you must keep in mind whether this is your forever home, or just another flip. I really do not see a whole lot of difference between your choices. So, if this is the only choice, I would go with the cheaper one.

I feel as if you might be stuck in flip mode, when you perhaps should be in "listening to what the style of the house wants" mode. For example, I want you to keep the terrazzo, because it is rare and expensive, instead of covering up with ordinary tile. I wish you would go outside the box, as in "the big box" stores.

I've been with your projects for a long time, and so I know that whatever you do, it will be nice, and comfortable, but since you ask, I am giving you my honest opinion.
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