What You Should Know about RTA Kitchen Cabinets

kitchen with RTA cabinets

Many homeowners take a kitchen-remodeling project very seriously, especially with their choice of kitchen cabinets. Cabinets represent a major investment, so they want to make sure they choose the right ones.

That said, it is perfectly possible to stretch your remodeling budget by choosing to ready-to-assemble or RTA kitchen cabinets without compromising quality and design. Many top cabinet brands such as Schrock, Forevermark, and Fabuwood carry RTA cabinets in many colors and styles.
RTA cabinets are generally more cost-effective than semi-custom or custom cabinets. This is not a reflection on the quality of the materials or construction, but rather a result of lower costs for shipping them. The come in convenient, flat packages that make it easy to transport large numbers of them at one time, and this savings trickle down to end users.

You may also realize additional savings with RTA kitchen cabinets, as they are relatively easy to assemble. If you have any DIY skills, you might even install them on your own. Of course, it always pays to have a pro do it for you, just to be on the safe side.
If you are still doubtful about the wisdom of choosing RTA kitchen cabinets for your home, here is what you should know about RTA kitchen cabinets.

Definition

RTA cabinet parts diagram
The ready-to-assemble of RTA cabinets is largely self-explanatory. The cabinets are broken down into sections so the manufacturers can lay them out flat. That said, you could easily assemble them because they should come complete in the box. You need to check these first thing to make sure everything is there.

You should see the panels that make up the door, box, and drawers (if any). These will all have the necessary holes predrilled, so all you have to do is line them up. The package should also include all the nuts, bolts, screws, hinges, rails, and plates you need to put them together as well as any pulls and knobs you chose.

Where to buy

showroom
RTA kitchen cabinets are easily available from big box stores and online stores. You simply choose the ones you like and they will deliver them to your home, usually with a small shipping fee.

However, you will probably have a smaller selection if you buy from big box stores because of limited space they tend to keep to just the most popular models. You can order from a catalog, but it may take some time before they get to you.
Space constraints are not a problem with online stores. However, you may not get what you expect in terms of quality and design. This is especially true if you choose the cheapest options, as these are often very poor quality.

You can minimize this risk by choosing from recognized brands, but there is always the problem of reliable after sales service in case you receive defective products, or they ship you something other than what you chose. Most online stores are not great at customer service, and the wait for reasonable action can take a while.

Your best bet is to get your kitchen cabinet from a local outfit and authorized distributor of these top brands with a showroom. You get to inspect the samples before you buy, and they are much easier to pin down when you need some assistance, before and after sales. It is even better to deal only with reputable companies such as Fairfax Kitchen Bath in Fairfax, Va. They will respond quickly to any issues you may have with your
RTA kitchen cabinets.

What to expect

types of RTA cabinets
You can expect to pay significantly less for RTA kitchen cabinets compared to semi-custom or custom cabinets because of mass production. This does not mean you should expect inferior quality, though.

While some RTA cabinets may be of poor quality materials, the same might be true for custom cabinets. It depends on where you get it. For good quality RTA cabinets, opt for ones from recognized brands. They might cost a bit more, but it will be a good investment as these often come with quality assurance seals and warranties.

Why cost varies

flat style RTA cabinets with white melamine
The price you pay for a set of RTA cabinets will depend on a few things you choose. These include the design, finish, hardware, and level of completion.

For the cheapest alternatives, opt for flat panel particleboard construction with a melamine finish that you can paint yourself. The most expensive ones may involve solid wood front panels in an inset style, plywood boxes, and a catalyzed lacquer finish. You might also pay more if your kitchen requires non-standard dimensions, and you opt for optional features such as crown moldings.

How suppliers estimate price

linear foot example
Generally, cabinet suppliers will give a cost estimate based on the area, usually in sets of wall and base cabinets. The supplier will measure the wall the cabinets will occupy in inches, and divide it by 12, so you will get a quote per linear foot.
For instance, if your wall is about 60 inches, this means 5 linear feet multiplied by the cost of the RTA cabinets you choose per linear foot. The unit price varies, but the minimum per linear foot is $250.

How to assemble

people assembling a cabinet or screwdriver
If you have all the parts you need, it is easy to assemble RTA kitchen cabinets. The pieces are clearly marked, and the holes are pre-drilled. Each package will come with a list of parts and assembly instructions, so if you follow this carefully, it should take you as little as half an hour to assemble one set.
For tools, you will probably just need a screwdriver, hammer, and glue. The hammer only becomes necessary if your kitchen cabinets use dowels for some areas.

Conclusion

Choosing RTA kitchen cabinets for your home is a good move in many respects as you can see from these facts about them. if you are still unsure, consult with a reliable remodeling contractor in your area for some advice. Fairfax Kitchen Bath is the one for you in the DC, MD and Northern Virginia metropolitan areas.

We are a Class A, licensed and insured contractor, registered in the Commonwealth of Virginia. We have a showroom in Fairfax, Virginia, which houses all our products.

We sell only top-quality products for all your kitchen remodeling needs, from top-brand kitchen cabinets of all type materials to natural and engineered stone slabs. We carry products from Schrock Cabinetry, Fabuwood, Silestone, Blanco, Kohler, and Mosaic D├ęcor.

Contact us today to get free in-home design consultation and quote for your RTA kitchen cabinets and other remodeling projects. We guarantee you will love it for life!

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Sam Kazanci <br/><span id="position">Owner</span>

Sam Kazanci
Owner

Sam Kazanci is the owner of Fairfax Kitchen Bath Remodeling. He has experience to build and remodel the kitchen and baths with his team and the author of fkb blog: You can find Sam on LinkedIn and Twitter.