It’s summer and that makes me think of fruit…more berries, but really all fruit. And so, today I wanted to talk to you about some of my favourite fruit-apples and oranges! Yes, this is still us at Elite Kitchens and Bathrooms, but the reason I wanted to talk about apples and oranges is to show you how to compare quotes you receive for kitchen or bathroom cabinetry.
We encourage you to get another quote or two if you wish before you renovate your kitchen or bathroom, but sometimes this can cause more confusion than if you didn’t get another quote. Today, I wanted to give you some tools to know what to look for, what questions to ask and how to compare quotes for kitchen and bathroom cabinetry. You’ll want to make sure that the quotes you are getting are comparing apples to apples!
Free Estimates and Drawings
To start, here at Elite we give free estimates, designs and quotes. Be careful of those who do not. Some cabinetry companies charge for this service. A good place to start is to ask if their quotes are complimentary.
Also, some cabinetry companies do not give you the drawings to take home to consider. This may not sound like a big deal, but it can lead to confusion when you are trying to compare one price quote to another. We operate on a trust basis. We trust that you will use the drawing to make your decision based on all the information.
Delivery and Installation
Next thing to watch for is whether delivery and installation are included. Our quotes include both delivery and installation. You can ask if their installer is in-house or a subcontractor. You can ask for the price of installation and delivery to be added to your quote to get a more accurate cost.
Does the Quote Include Quality Hardware?
Another thing to watch for is if the quote includes hardware. Believe it or not, some companies will not include hardware and that could be quite an additional cost that you are not prepared for. Also, if they do include the price for hardware (pulls, knobs, handles, etc.), make sure you know the parameters you were quoted. If the quote includes knobs up to $2 each, I would advise you to look at the quality of the hardware that you would be getting for the quoted price.
Hardware is definitely something you should not accept in substandard quality, it really can set the style for your kitchen or bathroom and the prices can vary greatly. You wouldn’t want to find out after you have signed a contract with a cabinetry company that you will be adding hundreds of dollars to the price because the hardware was either not included or not substantial enough. We do include the price of hardware in our quotes and we will give you the price range for your hardware. If you have any questions, we are happy to clarify and show you the quality of the hardware we use.
Drawers and Doors
Also, check to see how many drawers are in the kitchen, as opposed to doors. A bank of drawers in the lower cabinets of your kitchen are more expensive to install, but they are so much more user-friendly. If you are looking for a kitchen that is easier to live in rather than cheaper to build, remember drawers in the lower cabinets are a great option!
What About Accessories?
Does your quote include accessories like pantry roll-outs, garbage cans, lazy susan’s, etc. If you just look at the bottom line, you might not realize that the $2,000 difference in price is a lack of any accessories. Also, all these accessories come in various prices and qualities. Again, be sure you are comparing apples to apples — the same accessories and the same quality.
Guranteed Delivery Dates
Does the company guarantee the delivery date? If you are okay with waiting for your kitchen cabinets to arrive late and the renovation to take months, then don’t worry about this. I just don’t know anyone who wants to live through a renovation any longer than they have to-myself included! Obviously, at Elite, we guarantee your delivery date and we will keep you up to date on what decisions and the time frame in which you need to make them to keep on track.
If there is a delay on a product, we will contact you and keep you informed and give you options to keep your delivery date secured. Unfortunately, we have heard many people tell us of how their kitchen renovation was promised in a short timeframe, but the company did not deliver and there was a great deal of stress and added cost to their renovation. We want you to be our return customer and love your kitchen renovation experience. We know that it is in our best interest to keep our promises and we have been doing that for 25 years. So, bottom line, ask if their delivery date is guaranteed and know what you are getting into.
Taxes Charged by Retailers vs. Manufacturers
Another factor to consider is if you are getting a price quote from a retailer rather than a manufacturer. Our price is subject to GST only as we will be installing the product. The retailer price is subject to GST and PST plus there is the additional cost of installation which is not usually quoted and that cost is also subject to GST.
The Question of Trust and Reliability
And lastly, we have noticed a company that gives a quote and then dramatically drops its price when it realizes it is losing a customer. Perhaps the question to ask is this: would you trust a company that inflated its initial price substantially, but obviously could produce the product for much less?
Why would this happen? Is the quality substandard? Why didn’t they quote you the lower price initially-were they wanting to overcharge you? Is it now going to be made with lesser quality products? Can you trust this company after they have already been misleading? Check the company’s history. Look at their testimonials. Ask your friends and neighbours who they would recommend. It’s too big of an investment to gamble on the lowest price alone.
Make Sure You’ll Get Good Customer Service
Customer service is the last point I wanted to make. When you have asked for a price quote from a company, keep track of the timeframe in which they respond to you. The customer service you receive before you have signed a contract should be exceptional and is definitely an indicator of the kind of service you will receive once you have paid your deposit. If the response to you is late and they do not deliver at the time you were told, that is likely their best service and you can expect the service to wane once the deposit has cleared. We pride ourselves on meeting your expectations by being timely and not missing an appointment because we know your time is precious.
I hope this has clarified the questions you might have had. My hope is that you will be able to look at your price quote and see where the differences in price might be due to a difference in product rather than simply a higher quote. We at Elite would love the opportunity to show you our exceptional customer service and our commitment to quality and making your dream kitchen or bathroom a reality!
Happy summer everyone!
Verona Jungling blogs and works for Elite Kitchens and Bathrooms in Langley BC