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?
Also confirm that the quoted price includes hardware. Believe it or not, some companies will not include hardware and that could be 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.
Does the company give an estimated delivery date? We will give you an estimated delivery date within one week. We will require from you the information to complete your kitchen so we can meet this delivery date as promised. We will let you know well in advance the decisions that you must make and the time frame to make them so that our delivery date will remain as promised.
At Elite Kitchens & Bathrooms, our delivery date means that we deliver all of your cabinetry and begin installation immediately. This includes all boxes, panels, mouldings and doors. This process should take approximately one week to complete installation, depending on the size of kitchen. The countertops are installed at a later date, approximately 2 ½ weeks after they are templated. The delivery process is something that makes a big difference in how long it takes to complete a kitchen renovation and something you should ask in your quote and decision process. Some companies have added weeks and even months to a renovation due to lapses at this stage of the installation.
If there is a delay on a product, we will contact you, 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. We want you to love your kitchen renovation experience and feel confident that you are a priority and we can work together to keep your renovation on track. We know that it is in everyone’s best interest to keep our promises and we have been doing that since 1990. Bottom line: ask when your kitchen can be expected, so you 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
Finally, we have been building and installing cabinetry since 1990 and have worked hard to earn the trust and loyalty of our customers. We pride ourselves on our old fashioned values where we produce quality workmanship in the timeframe promised and all at a fair price. We stand by our products and do not hide costs within or outside our quotes. All our cabinetry is produced right on site and in the event of unexpected damage or a piece requiring resizing, we can provide a replacement within a short period of time and not cause a delay in the remainder of your renovation.
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