Semi-Custom Kitchen Cabinets


When you’re looking at remodeling your kitchen, you might be considering different customization options as part of the cabinetry selection process. While fully customized kitchen cabinets can be very expensive, many homeowners opt for “semi custom” cabinets instead.

But what exactly are semi custom cabinets, and how much do they cost? Here we look at semi custom cabinets for your kitchen, giving you advice on whether semi custom kitchen cabinets are right for your space.

Let’s get to it!

What Are Semi Custom Cabinets?

Semi custom cabinets are a halfway point between stock cabinets (also known as “prefab” or “prefabricated” cabinets) and fully customized made-to-order bespoke cabinets.

Usually, semi customizable cabinets are stock cabinets that come with additional options for personalization. For example, you may be able to change the size of certain dimensions and vary certain elements to better match your kitchen style.

Things you might be able to customize include:

  • Different cabinet door styles
  • Style/number of cabinet drawers
  • Depth of the cabinet frames
  • Internal storage options
  • Various colors
  • Organization features
  • Certain finishes

Generally speaking, the general shape and materials used for semi-custom cabinet brands will be consistent, so there will be some aspects of the design that you cannot change.

However, the ability to choose different door fronts, finishes, and certain size specifications gives many homeowners the ability to customize their cabinets enough to keep them satisfied.

If you’re looking at fancy new cabinetry, custom designs can cost you a fortune while stock cabinets can look a little cheap and low-quality. Part-custom cabinets retain the high-quality look of higher-end cabinets and still give you a lot of different features to tinker with.

For many, part-custom cabinet sets are the perfect halfway point that satisfies their unique kitchen layout without sending their project over budget.

Custom vs Semi Custom Cabinets

Okay, so when it comes to a kitchen cabinet, custom and part-custom can make a huge difference to the overall price, aesthetic, and quality. Though details vary from one brand to another, here are some of the key features of both types of kitchen cabinet style:

Custom Cabinets

Custom cabinets are fully bespoke and made-to-order. They’re usually manufactured by a small local cabinet maker within 30 miles of your zip code. Custom cabinetry comes with more features and clever storage solutions that you can play with.

For example, you may be able to include features like integrated refrigerators, drawers within drawers, lazy susans, and cleverly designed storage specific to your home and needs.

The possibilities are endless.

Custom cabinetry is also ideal for awkward kitchen spaces that may have problems with unusually placed windows, ceiling slopes, and limited space. In this scenario, the cabinetry can be customized perfectly to the unusual space, helping the storage to flow seamlessly with the shape of the room.

These cabinets also tend to be made from much more robust materials, and many come with a lifetime warranty included in the steep price.

Semi Custom Cabinets

In contrast, part-custom cabinets are usually made on a mass scale by a large manufacturer. Oftentimes, the materials used for the high-end and low-end cabinets will be the same (or similar) so you’re often getting lower quality woods.

Part-custom cabinets allow you to change certain aspects such as the depth of the frames, the finish of the doors, and the internal storage organization (number of internal shelves etc).

Some stuff you can change… some you can’t.

If your kitchen is a pretty conventional shape and doesn’t pose any major challenges for the design, then these cabinets could be exactly what you need to get the features you want without paying full-custom prices.

Many homeowners also choose part-custom cabinets that they love and then design their kitchen around them, keeping the cabinets as the focal point of the space. This interior design technique helps to make the cabinetry appear fully-customized even if it’s not.

How Much Are Semi Custom Cabinets?

Usually, semi custom cabinetry is a decent mid-range price that many homeowners are happy to pay. This cabinetry style, done well, can look high-quality and customized already, so it’s a great way to add value to a mid-range property.

Although prices inevitable vary by company and zip code, here are the general prices you can expect for different levels of customization from most cabinet makers:

  • Stock Cabinetry = $70 to $200 per linear foot
  • Part-Custom Cabinetry = $150 to $700 per linear foot
  • Full custom cabinetry = $500 to $1,250 per linear foot

When it comes to kitchen cabinets, custom options are always going to set you back the most. However, there is quite a noticeable jump when going from part-custom to full-custom, so you need to consider whether you’re really willing to shell out all that cash.

If your home is a fairly mid-level property in an average zip code, part-custom cabinets are probably the way to go. However, if your home is high-value and placed in a desirable zip code, you probably want to get a full-custom kitchen that meets a future buyer’s high expectations.

Are Custom Kitchen Cabinets Worth It?

When it comes to cabinets and their varying levels of customization, it all depends on the value of your home and whether it’s worth spending all that money on a customized kitchen or not.

For example, if your home is worth $250,000 and you want to spend $50,000 on a fully customized kitchen, you’re probably not going to add $50,000 in value to the property, especially if it’s in a less desirable location.

On the other hand, if you spent $15,000 on some really well-integrated part-custom cabinets, you probably will add value to the home without overdoing it.

As with any home renovation project, you need to take into account your budget, your vision, the limitations of your space, and the realistic effect it will have on your future resale value. If you’re not sure, speak to a real estate agent or interior designer who can help.

Whether you go for traditional cabinets or stock, semi, or full-custom cabinets, we hope you find the right kitchen storage solution for your needs!

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