So, you’re finally ready to start on that kitchen remodel? Now you just need to find a dealer to help – they’re all the same right? Wrong. We’ve come up with a list of 10 kitchen cabinet dealers to avoid when remodeling your kitchen.

  1. 11-cabinet-dealers-to-avoidWe sell anything AND everything!
    Big Box stores sell pretty much everything and their “designers” are often required to work in many departments.  A great way to boost their sale is to offer everything to you.  A cabinet dealer specializes in cabinets and the related components.  Who wouldn’t want a professional who specializes in kitchen and bath design?
  2. The writing is on the wall (or napkin or post-it).
    Ask the dealer how they process an order.  A lot of time and effort goes into ordering a kitchen – correctly.  If the designer is trying to remember everything with post-it notes on a manila folder, you’re in trouble.  Ask if they have software to keep them on track and complete tasks on time.  Design software is not process software.  How do they ensure all the steps happen at the correct times?
  3. Is the dealership a sinking ship?
    You’re probably looking for a cabinet dealer that is detailed and precise.  Take a look around their offices before you walk in.  If the sign is falling off their storefront or their delivery trucks look like they’ve been in a demolition derby, don’t bother!
  4. Showroom or Shack-room?
    Styles change all the time and the dealer’s showroom needs to keep up.  Broken, dirty or outdated displays and burned out lights are a dead give-a-away.  If their own showroom doesn’t hold up, why would you trust them with your kitchen?
  5. Money talks, Design Fees Walk.
    Some companies require a “design fee” which will be credited when (if) you place an order.  Woops, time to run!  Give them your real budget up front and they should meet it or beat it.  After that, their design, service and prices should lock you in – not some fee.
  6. Oh, you NEED this…
    You came for a new kitchen.  You need new cabinets, countertops, and maybe even hardware.  Don’t fall for the designer who pushes every item they sell at you.  You came to them seeking guidance and their expertise, not to empty your wallet on unnecessary items and useless upgrades.  Hint: A new roof and windows are not part of a kitchen remodel.
  7. Talk is cheap.
    “You’ve come to the right place.  We’ve designed a lot of kitchens.”  Where have they worked – exactly?  Who do they know in the area?  Get references and examples of kitchens they have done.  If you know someone who recently had their kitchen remodeled, ask them who did it.  Then, ask them if they’d work with them again!
  8. Extravagant showroom = Extravagant prices.
    A conference room with a large flat screen for presentations is nice.  Watch out if you see too many things like this.  If they’re not selling TV’s, somebody had to pay for all this stuff, right?
  9. Have I got a deal for you!
    Have you ever been pressured into buying right now or the deal is gone?  Almost every buyer recognizes this as a tactic to force you to commit without looking around.  It’s rare when a deal has to happen that very day or it’s gone.  Some manufacturer promotions do have an expiration date, so maybe they’re trying to help.  But if you feel like they’re pushing you, they probably are.
  10. Now you see it, now you don’t.
    If the first suggestion from the designer is to go in a completely different direction than your idea – watch out for their vanishing act.  Each dealership carries a limited number of cabinet lines.  If they don’t have the items you’re requesting, they will point you towards something they do carry.  That’s a good time for you to disappear and find a dealer who carries the product you’re looking for.