The second kitchen may look fine to the untrained eye, but the installation elements were less tidy, even though some of the design elements were less complex than the first kitchen. I could see that the installer failed to follow the tiny details spelled out in my kitchen design plan that would have made the “difference”, even though I had reviewed the installation plan with the cabinet installer beforehand and invited them to call me if they had any questions.
As a professional kitchen designer, it concerns me when the installer does not take the time or care enough to perform to the same high standards as I witnessed in the installation of the first kitchen. The second kitchen’s installer’s allegiance was to the builder because the builder was the one paying him to do the job.
This now brings us to a very important point for the homeowner to understand:
In the first kitchen, the homeowner paid more for the installation with a reputable high quality builder. The photos above illustrate a crisp and clean result.
In the second kitchen, where the installation was subcontracted out by a smaller, less-known builder, I initially quoted installation by my experienced “perfectionistic” installation crew for the homeowner/builder. However, the client or the builder (I’m not sure which) chose instead to assign the cabinetry installation to the builder’s own “framing carpenter.” Ultimately, and unfortunately, this homeowner paid the “price” for a somewhat substandard installation.
As you can infer, the subject of who will be responsible for installing kitchen cabinetry can be a contentious one for kitchen designers, installers, homeowners, and builders. From the kitchen designer’s viewpoint, installation quality is responsible for 50% of the outcome — meaning, how pristine the kitchen will look — so it is imperative that the installation be done as carefully and painstakingly as possible.
In contrast, the installer’s ability to carry out all tasks is governed by:
This triangle reflects the fact that the three properties of the kitchen installation are interrelated, and it is not possible to optimize all three – one will always suffer. In other words you have three options:
So, if you are homeowner who is undertaking a kitchen remodel and the topic of cabinetry installation has not been discussed, now is the time to do so. Ask a lot of questions and perhaps ask to see an installed kitchen completed by the contractor. I also recommend inviting an experienced kitchen designer to accompany you and assess the quality of the installation for aspects that only a trained eye will see.
Call Sandra today at (703) 801-6402 to schedule a kitchen remodeling consultation. Sandra will help you get the most value out of your kitchen remodeling budget and ensure that all the details of your kitchen renovation proceed smoothly, on time and within budget.