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By Ream Kitchen Team

An Honest Guide To Buying A Kitchen

Kitchen companies will be quick to boast incredibly low prices for ‘beautiful fitted kitchens’ without failing to mention the hidden costs of design, supplies and fitting.

“Half Price Quality Kitchens – Plus A Free Dishwasher!”

Sounds great doesn’t it?

Unfortunately, it really is too good to be true. What’s not mentioned in that headline is the cost of supplies, fitting, worktops all the way through to installation. At each step of the process you’ll find yourself exposed to yet another hidden cost and as the price quickly rises, the gripping offer that drew you in is now just a distant memory…

When you take on the project of a new kitchen there are many things you need to consider, the last thing you want is to be targeting by some of the bigger company’s classic ways of putting you out of pocket.

We’ve rounded up some of the most important things you should consider before you buy a new kitchen so you can enter the game with a few tips and tricks up your sleeves.

Black and White high Gloss Ream Contemporary Fitted Kitchen installed in Rochester

Ream Clients Kitchen in Rochester

Setting the right budget

Every great project starts with the allocation of a budget and of course you don’t want to be over ambitious, but you wouldn’t want to sell yourself short, either. A good rule of thumb is that you should aim to spend around 20% of the value of your house on a new kitchen, the heart of the home. You may be shocked or possibly even a little intimidated by this sum but look what happens when you start to break it down:

  • 35% spent on cabinets for optimal storage
  • 20% for worktops that align with your kitchen’s style
  • 20% for reliable, life long kitchen appliances
  • 15% is kept for back splashes and flooring
  • 5% electrical induced costs
  • 3% for plumbing
  • 2% on quality painting

Before beginning the design process, Ream will always discuss your budget to ensure all these features are incorporated.  We are transparent and always advise on what is more or less affordable to ensure that you are always covered.

It’s worth getting the budget right the first time – if you don’t plan correctly you will only find yourself falling victim to the hidden costs down the line…

Supplies? More like a web of lies…

You’ve been promised a kitchen for £999 so why wouldn’t you get that kitchen for that price?

The price you see on the TV adverts is usually only inclusive for around 8 units, which in the real world is probably only half of the kitchen – at best. So you’ll ask for extra units, to which the answer will be yes, but for the following price, at which point you’re left to pick up your jaw from the floor.

Finding the right fit…

When you’ve come to terms with the added units you’ve been forced to pay for you’ll be patiently waiting for the company to organise when to fit the kitchen in your home. Unfortunately, fitting leaves an almighty dent in your bank account, unless of course you’re experienced and can fit it yourself?

  • Your old kitchen needs to be ripped out? They won’t do it for fun
  • Appliances to be removed? You’ll need a paid plumber or electrician on site
  • New floor and tiling? That’s an added day for the building
  • Need your skirting redone – another possible excess of a hundred pounds…

Then of course the fitters will be paid for their work with the average cost around £350-400 a day. Now you see why the fit of your kitchen can significantly bump up the price of your new kitchen.

Ream Fitted Kitchen Walderslade Kent

Ream Client Kitchen Walderslade

The traps that leave you feeling like mice…

  • A ‘free’ consultation is great, when it is actually free.

Ream offer a free consultation that some companies will charge a fee of £50 and upwards for. What’s even better – we will follow your consultation up with a free planning service where we will take the time to understand your specific requirement.

  • It’s our mess, you clean it.

When a company quote you on how much your new kitchen will cost, they will fail to tell you that they won’t fix their own mess. Not for free, anyway. That hole you ended up with after your lights and electrics were fitted? You can find that in your invoice too. If you work with Ream you can be certain that you’ll receive a detailed, fully inclusive quote – with absolutely no hidden extras. And it’s fantastic value for money.

  • Worktops

Worktops can be a key contributor to price, with prices like £375 for laminate all the way up to £3000-4000 for Granite and Corian. The finish of a work top is particularly important, especially in a kitchen where there will be steam, hot water, gas and more spillages than you want. A lot of new-build kitchens will have displays with wooden kitchen tops but we suggest that you steer clear of wood, unless you have the time to properly maintain it.

  • Unique design… or a factory built kitchen?

In the race to compete with the lowest prices for the best kitchens, many franchises are turning to factory built kitchens and shipping off unqualified designers to ‘training’ school to learn about kitchens. This will usually consist of a week long ‘crash course’ whereby attendees are taught how to design kitchens using CAD design. What these training courses fail to include is the actual ‘building’ of a kitchen. That means when it comes to designing your dream kitchen, they don’t know enough about actually fitting it. If a proper site measure and survey is not done then major issues can start to rise. This will leaving the finished kitchen looking rather cheap, especially if pipes and radiators are in the way or units aren’t fitting.

  • Choose a company that is KBSA approved

Always check before you buy that the company is KBSA approved. This means you are completely covered should the bank go bust during the build or design process and will get your deposit back.

For Ream, designing and fitting bespoke new kitchens is our passion – not a dodgy sales process. We are renowned for competitive pricing and calculate costs to every individual design account for the complexity of units, manufacture time and materials. Your kitchen will be tailored for your individual needs; a bespoke and unique design with a pricing system that reflects this.

Have you fallen out of love with your kitchen? Come and visit your local specialists to help you once again fall in love with your home.

Kitchen Designer Rainham Kent

Ream Kitchen Designer in a Ream designed Kitchen