How Much Will My New Kitchen Cost?

(Part 1 in a series that examines our customers’ most frequently asked questions.)

New clients often call us wanting to know what a new kitchen will cost them. The simple answer? Until we visit their home and find out what they want us to spec out for the project, we don’t know what the exact price will be. But we can provide some general pricing information. Kitchen remodels can run from $15,000 to well over $200,000. However, most of our kitchen customers spend between $45,000 and $90,000 for a soup-to-nuts, gut-to-the-studs-and joists total refit to their kitchen.

Let’s take a look at what one of our kitchens in this average price range looks like. This is what we mean when we say “gutted”:


In this case, we didn’t take the floor down to the joists, but that happens on many projects in older houses. We gut a room like this because the system of mechanicals, structure, and vapor control behind the walls does not meet code requirements or is not performing adequately. We need to open everything up to bring it to modern performance standards and code. For this project, we also had to jack up the small bay the kitchen sink sits in, and install a replacement beam for the one you see in this picture. Over time, the bay had drooped more than two inches because the builder used undersized structural components.

We installed all new wiring, lighting, plumbing, insulation, drywall, and ceilings. After that came some very nice quality modern cabinets, stone, backsplash, and appliances. A few more nice touches, and it looked like this:


Most clients then ask “Why is there such a big price range?” and “What do I get for my money?” If you have $15,000 to spend, chances are you are going to be doing the job yourself or working with an unlicensed, uninsured carpenter charging a nominal hourly rate. This will be a simple room re-fit that includes the following:

  • No new plumbing, electrical, or structural work
  • Self-management of the project, including selection and ordering the products
  • Reuse of existing appliances or purchasing inexpensive replacements
  • Simple, inexpensive lighting solutions
  • Low-quality cabinetry and countertops
  • DIY painting of the finished room.

If you are spending $45,000 to $200,000 or more, your project will likely have a scope that includes:

  • A design-to-build general contractor to manage all facets of your remodel
  • Gutting the room to the studs to run new electric, plumbing, and heat
  • High-end appliance packages, such as Miele, Wolf, Sub-Zero, Thermador
  • Custom or high-end cabinets
  • Granite, soapstone, or similar countertops
  • High-end tile backsplash
  • New floors
  • A complete lighting plan that includes ceiling, task, and under-cabinet lighting
  • Possibly structural changes to open the kitchen to another room in the house
  • Possibly inclusion of a new adjacent mudroom, laundry, or powder room.

Over the past year, we have seen many customers seeking alternatives to this comprehensive kitchen package approach. Some want to have their own subcontractors handle some sections of the work. Some want to specify and buy their own countertops or appliances. We handle these requests on a case-by-case basis, but generally speaking, we are happy to work with clients who want to handle some tasks on their own, as long as those changes do not alter the scope or schedule of the project.

Have additional remodeling questions you need answered? Please don’t hesitate to ask.