Choosing a Kitchen Installer

Having designed over 200 hundred custom kitchens in the past twenty years, I cannot overstate the importance of choosing the right installer for your project.  As the professional kitchen designer, I am the watchman, the preparer, and the planner, but the installer is the key once the job goes live.

A good kitchen contractor can make a poor kitchen design work.  Conversely, I have seen a perfect design brutally murdered by a poor installer!  (Fortunately, I have some GREAT installers!)

He who installs has the power—to make or break the outcome for us both!

Chicago Kitchen Installers

The kitchen installer must embrace the project and my work because I will ask them to sign off during several stages of the project. For example, the contractor must first agree to the list of materials I order and then when the cabinets, trim and other components arrive, them must sign again.  I require multiple points of verification with the installer to insure that you receive what you have paid for.

Sub-par installers will do a poor cut when mitering, and then say they need more trim than originally agreed to.  Sometimes, they will say the order shipped short or that a piece was warped.

It is inevitable that problems will occur on the job and this is why it is critical to have a designer and installer who work well together.  Indeed, I often say that a job can be measured not by how many things go right the first time, but rather how quickly and seamlessly problems are solved.

A skilled, reputable installer understands that once they approve the material list, and he encounters a problem onsite, he has to be part of the solution rather than simply pointing fingers. If an installer says four pieces of crown is enough, and he needs five because his saw isn’t sharp – then he pays for this, and doesn’t hit you with additional costs.  

Everyone has a part to play, but the true power is in the installation specialist hands once the job goes live.   Sadly, most contractors are lousy.

So, what should you do to find the right kitchen installer?  The key is to embrace the difference between price and value.  All too many contractors will give you a low price to get the job, but once your home is in pieces and the extra costs add up, how much value are they providing?

Of course, you need to check references from previous clients and design professionals who have worked with the kitchen contractor.  And Google them to see if they have any reviews on Angie’s list, Google, Yelp or Yahoo.

In then end, make sure that whomever you choose is someone whom you would welcome into your home long after the job is complete.  It is this level of trust and compatibility that is your best protection.

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Did You Know?

There are nearly 10,000 carpenters and kitchen installers in the Chicago area?

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Cabinet Style Studio offers the complete line of Wellborn Forest cabinetry at exceptional prices.