Are you thinking about remodeling your kitchen but feel too anxious to visit the store in the middle of a global pandemic?
Online shopping is one of the massive conveniences of today’s world. Plus, it’s no longer clothes and books only. You can get anything, from tools to cosmetics to even furniture, without ever stepping foot inside the store.
However, some items are challenging to choose without getting to see and touch them. Cabinets fall under this category. Think about it – they hold the bulk of kitchen essentials, take up so much space, and make or break the style.
So, picking high-quality kitchen cabinets is a vital factor, practically and aesthetically. If you’re planning on purchasing them from the Internet, let’s make sure you do it right.
Enter any online furniture store, and a massive selection of options will greet you. You might even find the quantity overwhelming. Luckily, filters are a fantastic way to narrow down your search and see only the items you like. Here are the general categories you’ll find.
You’ll most frequently see stock cabinets, mass-produced and sold at every home improvement store. Most come pre-assembled and ready to install, too. They’re also the most affordable option, but they tend to impose limitations regarding colors, materials, and style.
On the other hand, there are custom cabinets. As the name suggests, it’s on you to make them match the size and appearance specifications for your kitchen. However, the style points often come with a high-end price tag.
Semi-custom cabinets are a middle-of-the-road solution. They’re essentially stock, but with some extra details. It’s a fantastic option if you’re not looking for anything over-the-top but still want to ensure your new furniture meets your storage requirements and looks the part.
The terms’ frameless’ and ‘framed’ most often describe cabinet builds on online store listings.
Framed cabinets consist of a box and face frame, which lets manufacturers use thinner materials. These pieces easily fit tighter spaces. Frameless cabinets have thicker boxes but no face frame, making them better for storage.
As this page explains, another common trend is shaker style cabinets, combining a flat center panel and square edges. It’s a frequently seen, simple, symmetrical option excellent for those looking to build a minimalist-style kitchen.
When you pick a style, the next essential consideration is the material. It determines both the look and the durability of your cabinets.
When it comes to the boxes, they often consist of human-made materials instead of natural wood, making the whole piece more economical. Notable options include:
- Particleboard. This element consists of sawdust and adhesive materials, and it’s lightweight.
- Medium-density floorboards. These combine wood fibers and adhesive, making them sturdier.
- Plywood. These are quite strong and stable.
Choose depending on what you plan on storing inside the cabinets.
Another, and more prominent, difference is in the material used for the doors. There are two primary alternatives – the ones from above with a wood finish or full hardwood. The latter option is better-looking and of higher quality, but also pricier.
If you go for maple, oak, or cherry, read up about that particular wood. Each has different features and maintenance requirements for you to keep in mind.
Once you have the primary characteristics in order, it’s time to consider add-ons. At this point, it’s much less about finding the highest quality and more about what works for you. Take a long look at your current kitchen and think about how you want it to look.
If you’re going for semi-custom or custom options, you can score some style points by adding glass doors, display shelves, plate holders, spacers, or tray kits. Even the handles can make a world of difference.
If you choose full stock cabinets, it’s still possible to personalize the display by playing around with lighting during the installation process.
Now that you know what to look for, it’s time to discuss some of the most common issues you’ll face shopping online versus in-person and how to avoid them.
The Quality Question
You can’t touch the cabinets in an online store. It’s natural to doubt their quality, especially if the prices are lower than you expected.
While this concern is among the significant deterrents to shopping online in general, there’s an easy fix. You can get an excellent, convenient, and affordable deal if you ensure you’re dealing with a legitimate co’mpany.
Other things you could do include:
Learning about high-quality cabinet builds. Comparing the offers from various suppliers becomes much less of a feat with that knowledge.
Ordering samples. While you still won’t get the full product, it’ll become much more seamless to determine the wood and finish quality.
Reading reviews. If the company is shady, you’ll find the information about those issues online from other consumers. Reviewers are your best friend.
Even if the company seems to tick all the boxes, you might have doubts, which brings us to the following concern.
Kitchen remodeling isn’t something you do every year or two. So, when you gather the time, money, and energy to tackle this project, you’ll want some assurance that the final product will be high-quality.
Internet brands are typically younger and less established, making them seem not as trustworthy as your local, expensive but 30-years-in-the-business store.
Luckily, this issue is also easy to solve by asking the company the right questions about its business and products. Older doesn’t always mean better, and with some caution, you might find your next favorite store.
The Measurements and Installation
Finally, you’ll have to tackle the measurements and installation procedures yourself if you’re ordering from the Internet.
Measuring isn’t a difficult task, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take it seriously. Otherwise, you might end up paying for cabinets that don’t fit your kitchen.
Regarding the cabinet installation tasks, hiring professionals is a go-to solution for the not too DIY-inclined. You’ll have to pay a bit extra, but you’ll save money on the furniture itself.
The Bottom Line
Overall, shopping online might include some anxiety and uncertainty. It’s still among the best available options for any purchase, though, combining convenience, affordability, and a massive selection into a smooth, easy-to-acquire package.
Learn all you need to know about cabinet builds to choose the best one and check the manufacturer’s reputability. As long as you follow these tips, you’ll end up with a fantastic product right at your doorstep.