Planning, estimating timelines, and facilitating your kitchen cabinetry project or home remodel has never been more complicated than now.
What to Expect After 2021
In a pre-pandemic market, the cabinetry process typically consisted of 5 main steps:
- Allow 30-45 days to meet with contactors, designers, and suppliers to select materials and styles, design the layout and receive your budget pricing.
- Select your bids and assign contracts. Give required deposits and wait 3-6 weeks for finished product to arrive.
- Once the cabinets are delivered, allow 3-5 days to complete the installation process. This will depend on the quantity of cabinets and level of intricacy involved.
- Conduct countertop templating (precise measuring) and allow 7-14 days for fabrication and installation.
- Enjoy your new Kitchen!
The global backlog of a seemingly endless list of construction materials coupled with labor shortages and rising prices has created the following situations that are now important to consider before beginning your project.
- A shortage of available contractors to engage in projects as those that are still working are inundated with new construction due to low interest rates and a growing backlog of work.
- Lead times on imported materials are severely affected and unstable due to a shortage of ocean vessels, congestion at seaports, and a shrinking fleet of truck drivers willing to brave the interstate highways to transport goods. Domestic material timelines have in some cases quadrupled as factory workers have yet to return in force and training new ones is an arduous, time-consuming endeavor.
- Increased prices due to the rise in costs and availability of raw materials. A labor shortage has also caused unstable pricing, subject to spur of the moment fluctuations.
- Once easy project additions such as countertops now must be planned far in advance to prevent further project delays.
How to Avoid Post-Pandemic Pitfalls
However, remodeling is not all gloom and doom in today’s times and much of what is stated above are worst case scenarios. They are, however, accurate assessments of what can occur without the proper planning and orchestration of a project. Let’s discuss how these pitfalls are best avoided?
- Seek to work with a reputable contractor / design firm that will do the following:
- Select a firm that has a wide variety of materials available to choose from, along with the desire and ability to incorporate your ideas into the design. This way, whether your primary concerns focus on price, production time, aesthetics, or functionality, they can find materials right for your needs.
- Ensure they will commit to honoring the price for your project once the contract is signed and a deposit is given. A deposit signifies your commitment to the project, and you should expect your vendor to demonstrate theirs by committing to provide the goods and services at the agreed upon price regardless of the economic climate.
- A highly functioning and efficient cabinet manufacturer should be able to provide weekly (if not daily) updates on the status of your ordered materials. This information will not only enable you gain an understanding of the initial time frame involved in your order, but also track progress as time passes to ensure you are on schedule and you are able to mitigate potential delays.
- Organize all complimentary components in your project and fully include them in your cabinetry plans for before you order materials. Without a total orchestration of all the parts and pieces, you will not be able to bring everything together in the final hour. Common complimentary components include:
- Flooring – Are you replacing the existing flooring? If not, are there repairs that need to be made once the old cabinets come out? If so, is the new flooring going under or being installed around the new cabinets?
- Appliances – These should be picked out and ordered prior to the cabinetry design being finalized. They have a huge impact on the final aesthetic of the kitchen and an improper fit between cabinet boxes is not something you want to live with. There are a variety of functionalities with appliances and once cuts are made into cabinets, they cannot be undone.
- Fixtures – These include hardware for your cabinets, lighting, inserts, etc.
Have these picked out and on site so installation can commence in an organized and efficient way. You will not be pleased with the end-result if not.
Your professional partner in the remodeling endeavor should be able to walk you through all of the caveats above and suggest how to proceed in order to eliminate obstacles and avoid frustration.
While this pandemic brought on new challenges, our team at Gulf Cabinetry remains dedicated to our client’s goals. We can anticipate obstacles and address them quickly to ensure your project remains on time and on budget. Contact us today to learn more.