23 May How to compare kitchen quotes
Kitchens are big investments, possibly the biggest investment you’ll make in your home, so when you begin researching new kitchens, it’s likely that you’ll visit several showrooms.
The great thing about talking to independent kitchen designers is the tailored service you receive in your design consultations. Once you’ve whittled down the choice to two or three kitchen companies, the tricky bit can come when you start to gather a few quotes. You’ll often find that the two or three quotes you’ve received are not formatted uniformly, making it hard to interpret and compare them.
Understanding your quotes
- What is included in the quotes?
Scan through the quotes and check to see exactly what has been included; does it just detail the furniture? Furniture and appliances? Furniture, appliances and fitting costs? Additional works and final decorating? The services offered by kitchen designers vary hugely. Some work on a supply-only basis, some quote for the full service (like us), and many quote for any iteration between the two! Some designers will quote for the furniture and appliances up front and then the fitting and additional works separately after a site visit. It is well worth checking what each quote covers before starting to compare costs.
- What is meant by full service or total project cost?
If your quote states that the figure relates to a total project cost, there is still room for interpretation! Check with the designer on what is included. To some, furniture & fitting is considered a total project cost, without accounting for additional works such as plumbing and electrics or fitting flooring or tiles. Double-check that what you think you have been quoted for has, in fact, been included to avoid surprises down the line.
- What is included in the fitting cost?
If you have a fitting cost included, is this just for the furniture, or does it include setting up appliances? Does it include all associated work with installing a new kitchen, such as flooring and tiling? Check you have understood what each designer is offering on fitting so there’s no ambiguity on your quote, but also so you know what you need to brief your builder on (if you’re having other work done).
Now that you have interpreted your quote and cleared up any queries with the designers, you’re ready to make solid comparisons.
Taking the above into account, what elements are comparable?
Comparing your quotes
Once you’ve separated out the quoted items that are very obviously not like for like, (i.e. one designer including fitting and one not), look at the remaining elements:
- The design
When you put the designs next to each other, are the layouts, features and overall design broadly the same or what is different?
- The specification
Are the appliances of the same spec across the quotes, or are there additional specification upgrades, such as a Quooker tap in one but not another?
- Fixtures and fittings
The devil is always in the detail! Look at your drawers and cupboards to see what internal storage solutions have been incorporated and what materials have been used.
Worktops vary hugely in price depending on the material. If one quote shows a Corian worktop, for example, and one shows a laminate, the prices could differ by several thousand pounds.
Your furniture costs should be broadly comparable if each designer has proposed the same style of kitchen. If the prices are not in the same ballpark, bring this up in your follow-up design consultation so your designer can talk you through the furniture you’ve been quoted and why there is such a difference. You might not be comparing apples to apples, and your designer will be happy to talk you through the design choices and materials they’ve proposed.
Making a decision
At this point you have all the information you need to make a considered decision and choose the designer you feel the most comfortable with and inspired by. Talk to them about the tweaks to the design and spec to finalise your quote, and you’re good to go!
Does this feel like a bit of a minefield? Fear not. We like to take the burden out of choosing a new kitchen, so we take care of everything and are always happy to talk through our quotes, our designs and work with you to achieve your dream kitchen. Book a design consultation on 01342 313 133 or emails us at email@example.com.