Do you want to go home to a kitchen that makes you want to prepare food, where all the things you need are placed where it has to be, and where all clutter is hidden away? Well, you need better kitchen cabinets. Choosing the proper kitchen cabinets is the first major hurdle in your kitchen makeover plan to achieve a well-organized and functional kitchen.


Because the kitchen cabinet is the most visible and distinguishing part of any kitchen, picking the right style is crucial to a successful design. It is not simple to find a method that works with your demands, goals, and aesthetic preferences. This is because kitchen cabinetry is considered among the most expensive things in any renovation budget.

So, suppose you plan to do some minor updates to your kitchen or invest in a major renovation soon. In that case, this will give you the perfect guide to choosing the most cost-effective cabinets for your kitchen. 

  1. Consider the type of kitchen cabinet
    When choosing kitchen cabinets on a budget, remember to include quality as a significant consideration. Even if some cabinets and manufacturers appear to be the most cost-effective option, consider the long-term implications. Significantly greater quality cabinets usually are more expensive. Still, with more modification possibilities and a longer lifespan, you will obtain cabinets that are not only long-lasting but also ageless and beneficial in the long term. Investing in high-quality cabinets in the first place will spare you money and time when it comes to kitchen renovations and purchasing new cabinetry in the future. The four basic types of kitchen cabinets include:

    • Ready-to-assemble (RTA) cabinets– these cabinets are easily accessible and available at retail stores like Ikea. RTA cabinets are much less expensive, but they are also less sturdy and lasting. Installing an RTA cabinet is not as straightforward, so you would still most likely spend on hiring a specialist for the job.
    • Stock Cabinets – Stock cabinets are considered the most cost-effective alternative in the marketplace. They usually range between $50 and $100 per linear foot. However, they will cost between $100 and $300. Please note that stock cabinets have limited design possibilities, so they are less expensive than semi-custom and custom kitchen cabinets. Because readymade varieties might sometimes have quality and dimension difficulties, you must precisely determine the position of your new installation before purchase. If you are doubtful, have an expert estimate the size of your kitchen space.
    • Semi-Custom Cabinets– Semi-custom kitchen cabinets are the most excellent option if you want something distinct, durable, and less expensive than custom cabinets. Suppose you have a higher budget and want more aesthetically pleasing cabinets. In that case, semi-custom cabinets can cost anywhere from $200 to $600 per linear foot built. If you only wish for cabinets, the price ranges from $100 to $450 per linear foot or $100 and above per unit. The unavailability of more unique designs may be the only drawback of semi-custom cabinets.
    • Custom Cabinets – Custom cabinets are the best option if your spending plan is much more significant. They are ideal for kitchens with particular and unique styles, designs, and usability. Installing them usually costs between $400 and $1,500 per linear foot. Custom kitchen cabinets can cost anywhere from $250 to 800 per linear foot. So, while custom cabinets suit all of your requirements, they can put you in financial constraints, which may be the one drawback.

    Semi-custom or premade cabinet alternatives work great if you have a basic sized and shaped kitchen that does not need a lot of modification. These are a terrific alternative for first-time homeowners because they are usually cheaper and come in various colours and styles to suit your place. On the other hand, custom cabinetry may be the option to go if you have a distinctive kitchen with unique dimensions and curves or if you desire to add additional amenities and elements.


  2. Consider the style and material of the cabinet
    Having a particular cabinet door style in mind when renovating your kitchen is crucial. You must ensure that you think about all of your possibilities before reaching a choice. Inset and raised panel door cabinet styles are often more expensive than slab door-front cabinet styles. Shaker or slab-style cabinet doors are a fantastic alternative for individuals trying to save money because they provide a powerful and flexible contemporary kitchen aesthetic.
    When looking for cabinets, evaluate material selections for the most excellent style and pricing. Wood is usually more expensive. Maple and hickory are more costly in this category, whereas oak is more economical. Laminate cabinets, which are less expensive than wood, are a popular option because they appear impeccable without spending too much money.
  3. Consider the colour and finish
    Another thing to keep in mind when designing kitchen cabinets to stay on budget is the finish and colour. These two are decided mainly by personal preference and financial constraints. Generally, you can choose between these colours and finishes to stay on budget:

    • Stained wood – Stained wood kitchen cabinets have a natural and organic look and feel. Still, they are generally pricey because they are made from only the most delicate wooden pieces. A natural or deeper stain, as well as whitewash, are available as stain alternatives.
    • Painted wood– Painted wood kitchen cabinets go well with practically any interior space. Furthermore, because the paint is usually opaque, it can be used to cover lower-quality wood. Painted kitchen cabinets are generally cheaper than stained kitchen cabinets.
    • Laminate – Particleboard kitchen cabinets are covered in laminate, which defines their appearance, finish, and colour. There are a variety of laminate possibilities, such as thin layers of natural wood, artificial wood, and MDF (a tough plastic product). All of these laminate alternatives are reasonably priced. However, please note that laminate is seldom as long-lasting as kitchen cabinet stains or paints.

    For ready-to-assemble cabinets, laminate and painted cabinets are the most popular finishes because they are way cheaper. However, the door and face frames of these kitchen cabinets are generally better finished than the sides of the cabinet frames.

  4. Consider going for a minimalistic approach
    Take note that the fewer the kitchen cabinet accents you choose, the less you will have to spend. These elements, which range from crown moulding and glass door fronts to ornamental legs, and coordinated end panels, look fantastic but will surely cost you much more. Going for a simple and minimalistic design can help you save money while still providing an aesthetic value to your kitchen.

    Ornamental drawer handles and knobs are another modification choice that can quickly add to expenditures. To blend with kitchen cabinet doors, cabinet knobs should combine usefulness and aesthetics. They do not have to be as lavish as they are. Kitchen cabinet hardware should not cost more than several dollars, especially since the entire kitchen requires the same handles. Investing in hardware that costs more than $10 each will quickly drive up the price of your total cabinet cost. Avoid overpaying on the handles by keeping them simple. Lastly, you could save cash on your total cabinet construction fees by opting for a future replacement.

Final Thoughts: 

One of the most effective and practical methods to revitalize a residence is to renovate the kitchen. New worktops, improved workflow, and, in many cases, payback on your expenditure are all benefits of a remodelled kitchen design. Some aspects of your kitchen makeover, particularly the cabinetry, require special attention.

Kitchen cabinets can be the most pricey component of a renovation project, costing more than worktops and flooring. Fortunately, you can save money on kitchen cabinetry. If you follow the guide above, you will be able to select the ideal kitchen cabinets for your limited budget!


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  6. Retreat Design Perth. 2021. 5 Ways To Design A More Cost Effective Kitchen. Retrieved from: Retrieved on 15 April 2022. 
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