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Hey everyone, it has been a good while since I have been on lumber jocks. But I have a question about pricing a kitchen cabinet job. I have done two different jobs for kitchen cabinets and both were for family. I am in the process for a job that is not for family. The client has bought 90% of the materials already so basically the price is going to be my build and installation. They also want a 6 ft bathroom vanity. Any help on pricing would be greatly.

Thanks
 

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Aside from asking a cabinet shop, I would see what the higher end cabs are at Home Depot. They are usually priced by the box but you could works up an estimate by the foot for uppers and lowers.
 

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Your description is so lacking in meaningful detail that any price someone gave you would be worthless.

How bout tellin us how many cabinets you‘re talking about building.

And type? Framed cabs are going to take longer than frameless. Longer still if they chose the wood and it’s crap and you’ve gotta spend time correcting it.

And what size(s) ??? a 15” one door base is gonna take less time to build and install than a 36“ pantry that’s 8ft. tall and full of rollouts and or Kessebohmer chefs pantry mechanism.

Are you making the drawers ordering them or using a metal box system ?

Are you going to be finishing them ? Stain ? Paint? What kind? Are you equipped to spray finishes ? Is this a veneer job with exotic material like teak in which a mistake on your part will be very costly ?

Where are you going to store all the completed boxes ? Do you have room ? How are you going to deliver them ?

Do you have historical data on how long it took you to build certain types of cabinets for your faimily ?

Do you have even a rough idea of your overhead costs ? Saw blades, glue, screws, electricity all cost immediate money and the amortized cost of your other tools like routers , chisels, air compressors ect…. need to be factored in as well.

And most importantly………..what’s your time worth ?

If you’re happy making $0-10 an hour , the project will be really inexpensive even if you take forever. If your shop rate is $125/hr the cost will be quite subs even if you‘re fast and efficient. You also need to value risk and add $$$ for profit into your quote.
 

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If it was easy and profitable everyone would be doing it. You have to assume that they are looking for a cheap alternative otherwise they would have purchased them from a cabinet shop, or a big box store. You have to assess the risk. What type of warranty can you provide? Since you are providing installation are you insured?
 

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I think everyone is trying to offer you some good help. Building kitchen cabinets for family and friends is one thing, but when you take on a set for a client then it can be a whole different ball game.

There are 5 large cabinet shops in our area. All build differently and all charge differently depending on their profit margins. The cabinet shop business carries a lot of liability and risk in today's market. Do you have insurance and do you have an LLC? If you don't have an LLC, then maybe you should think about getting the client to sign a contract with you saying they won't sue the pants off of you and try to take everything you personally own if they turn out to be unhappy with your work clients.

Our family millwork business stopped making kitchen cabinets because the profit margin was much higher. When I retired and handed it to my daughters I made a few more sets in my personal shop at home. When it came time to renew my LLC I stopped making cabinets and went to all furniture,

Are you out to just make a set of cabinets or are you out to make a decent profit?

Good luck with your decisions.
 

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I can put up an old pricing guide, but it’s from around 2005-2010. I’ve got to take a look at these numbers soon myself and rework it..

The only time I let customers buy materials is after a bid. As a matter of fact I’ve only did that once for a friend I built cabinets for..
 

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Are these custom or individual boxes?

huh ?

It'd be nearly impossible to build a kitchen as one cabinet. Even if you did, delivery would be even more problematic.

We could debate the nature of "custom" all day everyday - that label or description isn't useful for this discussion in my opinion. However the specs, box sizes, and how many of them need to be made are quite relevant no matter the what we call em.
 

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huh ?

It'd be nearly impossible to build a kitchen as one cabinet. Even if you did, delivery would be even more problematic.

We could debate the nature of "custom" all day everyday - that label or description isn't useful for this discussion in my opinion. However the specs, box sizes, and how many of them need to be made are quite relevant no matter the what we call em.
I’m not sure how this reply helps the OP?
 

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Charge time and materials and make it easy on yourself. The customer bought 90% of the materials? That’s a red flag in my mind…another reason to charge by the hour.

What’s the going rate right now in your neck of the woods? Charge that or a bit more. Do not get into a deep discussion of styles, colors, finishes, face-frames, etc…that’s a losing game, imo. A quick overview is needed and just fine—and a ballpark estimate of the number of days is probably required—- but once you start charging by the hour, then you get to charge for detailing the design, selecting the hardware, customizing the finish, etc…

I think you’ll regret trying to fix price something that you haven’t designed and bought. How are you going to handle problems when they arise, what if the materials the customer bought warp or don’t fit or look bad? Are you going to absorb that cost? I wouldn’t. T&M is the only way to go on this one.
 

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Charge time and materials and make it easy on yourself. The customer bought 90% of the materials? That’s a red flag in my mind…another reason to charge by the hour.

What’s the going rate right now in your neck of the woods? Charge that or a bit more. Do not get into a deep discussion of styles, colors, finishes, face-frames, etc…that’s a losing game, imo. A quick overview is needed and just fine—and a ballpark estimate of the number of days is probably required—- but once you start charging by the hour, then you get to charge for detailing the design, selecting the hardware, customizing the finish, etc…

I think you’ll regret trying to fix price something that you haven’t designed and bought. How are you going to handle problems when they arise, what if the materials the customer bought warp or don’t fit or look bad? Are you going to absorb that cost? I wouldn’t. T&M is the only way to go on this one.
How you run a cabinet business if you couldn’t bid?f

if materials were bought up front, hopefully the OP told him what to buy.:unsure:

You pay guys in the shop by the hour.
 

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I’d provide a rough estimate, but not a fixed price bid in this case. That being said, I’m going off a couple of sentences from the OP…and it seems that he’s not directly in the cabinet biz, per se. Only done a couple of kitchens for family, hence his questions. Don’t know if he has employees, what his experience is, etc… T&M seems like a good way to go, since what we are talking about is his labor not a firm quote to provide and install cabinets.
 

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Cabinets should be on a bid. You should get many bids. If he took the job and material , but doesn’t know how to price , I guess he will learn the hard way.

I wouldn’t hire a cabinet guy by the hour.

I want to know when my cabinets are coming..
 

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I’m not sure how this reply helps the OP?
kinda like the one preceding it ?

or the last one ?

As long as we’re just kickin the tires :

A good cabinet guy wouldn’t take your job and let you supply the materials.

We don’t “bid” jobs. Ever. If we mutually decide to proceed together , we take a deposit and start designing and creating specifications to arrive at a price. And our lead time today may be 16weeks, but when you actually place your order in might be 22. Or 10. It just depends on what you want and when you order. And we may or may not be on time. Might be early too.

Does your dentist “bid” your cavity removal and filling , or do you get a bill ? Do you even get a range of what it may cost ? If you did, would you know if it was a good or fair price ?

And lately, even your estimate , promise ect… on when your cabinets are coming is not set in stone. Parts and materials get delayed beyond quoted arrivals, ect. ect. Making your delivery time shift. Doesn’t matter if you‘re a neophyte in a basement or a global manufacture of cabinets. Times are an estimate and one places guess may or may not be more accurate than another’s. And historical data is meaningless if your projects happens to be the outlier.

So what ?

And I’ll ask you again - what does knowing “custom“ or individual boxes have to bear on the discussion?
 

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OP wants the work. Customer bought the materials already. So what the OP is being hired for is his labor…unless I’m mistaken. Labor is sold by the hour or day or week. This could include designing the cabinets, running finish samples, or merely installing. Regardless, OP (after doing whatever research he wants, providing any documentation that supports his estimate) scratches his head and says, the best I can tell you is that it’s 10 days (or 30 days) of my time. I charge XXX $ per day. How does that sound? When can we get started?
 

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#1… Your insurance determines what your dentist charges.
#2….Residential bid here as well as commercial..
:#3…Individual boxes or custom helps me figure out if he wants prices by tye box or by the foot.
 

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“A good cabinet guy wouldn’t take your job and let you supply the materials.”

There ya go. Rather than complain about people trying to help , you should try and help the OP..
 

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OP wants the work. Customer bought the materials already. So what the OP is being hired for is his labor…unless I’m mistaken. Labor is sold by the hour or day or week. This could include designing the cabinets, running finish samples, or merely installing. Regardless, OP (after doing whatever research he wants, providing any documentation that supports his estimate) scratches his head and says, the best I can tell you is that it’s 10 days (or 30 days) of my time. I charge XXX $ per day. How does that sound? When can we get started?
Hopefully the customer knows if the price is good.
 

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Pricing in such a situation is going to be a challenge because the customer bought 90% of the materials. But the 10% that’s missing might be 90% of the headaches. All depends. Which is why I advocate T&M.

So what was bought and what’s missing? I think that’s a fair question to ask Stanrc54, the OP.
 
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