Cabinets have the greatest visual impact in your home as they establish the style and design of your kitchen. They can create the base for an island kitchen whether they were designed for casual dining or cooking. Kitchen cabinets are not the place to scrimp when designing a new kitchen, as they will outlast your appliances, kitchen floor and possibly your countertops depending on the selected material. Some of the common types of cabinets used in modern kitchen include custom and ready-to-assemble (RTA) kitchen cabinets. Some people have the impression that choosing between custom cabinets and RTA cabinets is all about quality. However, the difference goes beyond quality as each type of cabinet comes with its benefits and downsides.
What are RTA Kitchen Cabinets?
Ready-to-assemble cabinets are shipped to a builder or a homeowner in boxes since they are already cut to size, labeled and finished with pre-drilled hardware holes. Once the package arrives, you need to put them together before attaching them to the wall and floor. They come with an instruction manual that takes you through the entire procedure. Most of the instructions are mainly diagrams and drawings with steps showing minimal or no written explanations. You can also check out the links on how to assemble your RTA cabinet by watching online videos highlighted in the manual.
What are Custom Cabinets?
Pre-fabricated cabinets are completely built or assembled and sold as ready-to-install cabinets. The only disadvantage is that you may never find a unique size cabinet that fits perfectly in your space. It is for this reason that other designers came up with custom cabinets, which are more like pre-fabricated cabinets, but offer the ability to customize your cabinetry. They come with a variety of door styles, wood species and a wide array of color, stain, and finishes. Unlike RTA cabinets, you can add more personality in your kitchen with custom cabinets as they can be designed to meet your taste and preferences. Although some people may choose to install it by themselves, a professional will do a better job for you, as they have the right expertise and experience in their line of work.
Factors to Consider When Choosing between RTA and Custom Kitchen Cabinets
The quality of the cabinets determines how well they blend with your interior décor and the frequency of repairs and regular maintenance. The material used in RTA cabinets may be unique in appearance but its quality may be compromised to cut down the costs. On the other hand, custom cabinets give you the freedom to choose high-quality wood, runners, hinges, and soft close doors that last for a long time.
You can assemble RTA cabinets easily but they often come in limited shapes and designs. You are likely to receive improper or missing pieces in your shipment, which necessitates the need to look elsewhere for parts that are not available. Custom cabinets offer versatility as everything is customized for you and arranged beforehand to ensure everything is done promptly. Another benefit of custom cabinets is that they can be designed to fit tight or odd spaces.
Ease of Installation
RTA kitchen cabinets can be installed easily as they come with a manual that highlights the steps taken to assemble the cabinet. Custom cabinets rely majorly on the skill of a professional contractor as they follow your specifications and preferences to design the overall setup. Because of this reason, custom cabinets are not ideal for DIY projects as they are built from scratch.
RTA kitchen cabinets are budget-friendly and you can always shop around for the best deals in the market. However, custom cabinets are quite expensive since you have to deal with several factors such as purchasing materials, labor, colors or finishes. It may also take some time based on the type of design and availability of materials needed.
While it may take less time to assemble an RTA kitchen cabinet, it might not appeal to every homeowner in terms of quality and ability to fit in spaces with odd-shaped corners. There is also a possibility of receiving missing pieces or impaired parts in the package. On the other hand, full custom cabinets are built by a professional cabinetmaker to fit certain specifications, designs, color, texture, and size. They are highly flexible which makes them an ideal choice for tight spaces and oddly shaped corners. It is always important to make wise choices when choosing the type of cabinet for your kitchen as it needs to add both elegance and functionality to space.