We understand the remodeling process can be a daunting one. Over the years we’ve developed this list to help the would-be-re-modeler better understand our process and what to expect.


Why do I need a professional designer?TOP

You’re making a big investment in your home so you want to be sure it’s done right. Just as you wouldn’t want a designer building your kitchen or bath, you wouldn’t want a contractor designing it. The designer is the liaison between the contractor and the client. We facilitate your thoughts and needs into construction drawings which are then shared with the contractor. The smooth flow of communication from client to designer, then from designer to contractor is a key element in making sure everything is installed properly and you achieve exactly what you want.

What are your qualifications?TOP

Your designer…

  • Has over 20 years experience designing all manner of interior spaces
  • Has attained the coveted NCIDQ Certification. For more information please visit www.ncidq.org
  • Is a member of the KNBA, in good standing
  • Has designed literally thousands of kitchens, baths and other residential and commercial spaces and will help you avoid the pitfalls
  • Has personally been through the remodeling process and is sensitive to how disruptive it can be to your life and takes steps to minimize the impact
  • Loves to cook and knows the importance of form following function!
How will I be involved in the design process? TOP

Your input is the most important part of the design phase of your project. We encourage you to keep a cut file of pictures and products you’ve seen in magazines and on the internet to help us identify elements that are most important to you and your family. During our initial consultation we really want to get to know you and find out how you live and use your space. We also recommend that all of the decision makers be there at each consultation whenever possible. After our initial meeting your specifications and requests are incorporated into the kitchen layout along with our expertise. We use an advanced software package, to show you detailed, 3-D drawings of your space from all angles. We then use your feedback to revise and refine the design and turn it into the kitchen, or bath of your dreams.

How does your process work? TOP

The first step is to determine your design, product and labor needs and decide on a scope of work. Then we schedule a consultation in your space. Depending on the level of service you have selected, this first meeting will usually last up to 2 hours in which time we take measurements, discuss your ideas and requirements and analyze the space. With this information, we begin to pull together your design solution; this typically requires about 2 weeks. We then meet to review our solution and make and discuss any revisions.

Will your design meet my budget? TOP

So often, a customer’s ideas are bigger than their budget, which is why establishing a budget from the beginning is so important. Whether you are building your dream home, or remodeling for the first time, we have the design skill and product selection to help you reach your goals. We will be happy to advise you on establishing a sensible budget that reflects your needs, the real estate market and your home’s value. Please take a look at our resources page to see some helpful articles regarding the costs of common remodeling projects. At KitchensETC you always get the best value for your dollar.

How much will a new kitchen cost? TOP

This is a difficult question to answer. We have done kitchen projects that range from $1,500 to over $200,000. The price of your remodel depends on the size of the space, the quality and style of the materials you select, and the degree to which you are altering the existing space. Generally speaking, it is often recommended that you spend between 15 and 25% of your home’s value on a kitchen remodeling project in order to achieve the best return on your investment. So if, for example, your home is worth $400,000, you might consider setting your budget at $80,000 or 20%.

Why should I use a factory made cabinet? TOP

This is a critical question. There are many people in the marketplace that can make cabinets. All too often the quality of the product, fabrication capabilities, and production schedule are wildly inconsistent. With a nationally known, factory-made cabinet you have a much more reliable time frame than with a shop-made cabinet. The typical production time for a factory-made cabinet is anywhere from 1 to 5 weeks depending on the brand. This time frame is not affected by changes in humidity, personal issues of the cabinet maker, or small scale supply-chain disruptions. With a wide variety of manufacturers to choose from, our design capabilities are also not limited to the machinery or skill set of the individual cabinet maker. With many of our semi-custom and custom manufacturers, if you can draw it, they can build it, or match it to any color or finish. All of our lines feature a catalyzed conversion varnish or baked on finish that passes strict ANSI standards for water and chemical resistance. And many offer a lifetime warranty that remains in-tact regardless of whether or not the dealer is still in business. When the situation calls for it we do have access to local, highly skilled, very experienced craftsmen whom we trust, call on exclusively and have well-established relationships with. This is the best way to be sure you are getting the quality product and service you are paying for.

Do you offer eco-friendly products? TOP

Absolutely. All of our cabinet lines meet the KCMA (Kitchen Cabinet Makers Association) strict Environmental Stewardship guidelines for environmentally sustainable manufacturing practices. Several of our favorite cabinet lines are locally made which helps support our local economy while reducing shipping damage and carbon emissions from long-haul shipping. Additionally, we have products that use only waterborne finishes and formaldehyde free adhesives. These lines are also certified to be free of VOC’s (volatile organic compounds), and HAZ (hazardous materials). Renewable woods such as Bamboo and Lyptus are also available as plywood, in the case of bamboo, and as doors in the case of both woods. For countertops we love concrete. This versatile material is one of the most eco-friendly, durable and beautiful products on the market. Take a look at our concrete division at www.artisanconcreteva.com.

Why don’t you have a showroom? TOP

We believe our way offers a much better experience for our clients. We are not restricted by the hours needed to man a showroom. Our hours of operation are whatever suits your schedule. We are free to bring all of the samples to your home or office, wherever it’s most convenient for you. A showroom is extremely expensive to build and maintain and we prefer to pass those savings on to you. Our focus is on you, not on having to maintain a showroom.

Will you work with my contractor? TOP

Sure. We will happily work with your contractor or would be glad to . Sometimes however your builder may only want to work with their own cabinet supplier. Make sure you’re working with a builder or contractor who allows you the freedom to choose your own cabinet supplier and designer so your options aren’t limited.

Do you provide installation? TOP

Yes. We actually prefer to do the cabinet installation ourselves whenever possible. We have established very strong relationships with our installers, which makes for a better end result. When we install the cabinets, we guarantee that everything will be done right. If we make an error, we are responsible for fixing it at our expense. This gives you an added layer of protection. If you choose to use your own installer, he or she will be responsible for installing the cabinets correctly. We will make ourselves available to help interpret the drawings and answer any questions that may arise but ultimately the responsibility for knowing proper installation techniques is his or her responsibility. WE are also happy to coordinate any additional demolition or construction if you would like.

Do you offer re-facing? TOP

In re-facing, often the face frames and ends of your cabinets are covered with a thin self-adhesive veneer. In this case there are often quality issues and de-lamination is a common problem. Additionally the doors are the most expensive part of the cabinet so overall savings are not what you might expect. We advise clients to wait and save for a complete remodel which will be of better quality, with more modern interior amenities, a more functional layout and offer a better ultimate return on investment.

Do you have minimum order requirements? TOP

No we do not. Unlike many other companies, we will happily order a single door, a small countertop or a piece of decorative hardware. Now some countertop fabricators do have minimum order requirements but these are typically very small and easily met. There are also typically minimum freight charges to also be aware of.

How long does it take to get cabinets? TOP

Once the design process is complete and cabinet order is placed, you can expect to receive your cabinets in as little as one week for stock cabinets, 4-6 weeks for semi-custom cabinets and up to 12 weeks for custom cabinets.

How long will it take to remodel my kitchen? TOP

Kitchen remodeling has many elements, such as plumbing, electrical, woodwork, and flooring, so it may take some time. Also, due to the importance of building codes, there are several city inspections throughout the process, which may delay completion. Furthermore, factors such as choice of materials and availability may greatly affect timing since a special countertop or custom cabinets, for example, may take longer to fabricate than already-made ones off a shelf. In general, however, a typical complete kitchen remodeling can take anywhere from 30 to 90 days, depending on size and choice of materials. If there is an addition involved, this time will likely be extended. The actual cabinet installation portion will normally only take between 3 and 10 days.

Do I need to hire an architect for my project? TOP

A typical kitchen remodel does not require the assistance of an architect. However, if the total project involves substantial changes to the exterior or increase in the total square footage of the home then an architect can set the tone for the style of the building and help ensure the additions are in keeping with the existing style. We are happy to work with your architect or recommend one for you.

Do you use contracts? TOP

Absolutely. We want to ensure that you are receiving the exact level of service you expect. Contracts are the best way to avoid mis-communication and will outline scope of work, specifications and time lines.

What is your payment schedule? TOP

While every type of project is different, for cabinetry we often require a 50% deposit on ordering and the balance due at delivery (if not being installed by us), or 40% on delivery and the balance due at substantial completion of the cabinet portion of the installation.