How much does a cabinet maker cost?

Price guide

$2,000 - $30,000

low

$2,000

median

$10,000

high

$30,000

Low, median and high bar chart distribuiton

How much does a cabinet maker cost?

There is a discrepancy in the skills needed for cabinet-making and repair tasks. Cabinet making can involve highly specialized and exquisitely detailed craftsmanship. It can also involve much more drilling and joining. 

Whether or not you’ll need a cabinet maker will depend on the type of job, as well as your expectations for the finished product. If you need something that looks like it’s been done by a professional, it might be best to hire one. The average cost to make cabinets start from $2,000 to $30,000.

Average cabinet-making and repair prices 

The price you’ll have to pay for cabinet-making services can cost up to $2,000 for customized furniture. Some of the average prices charged for tasks are listed below:

Cabinet making service

Price

Bathroom cabinet maker

$2,500 - $7,500

Custom TV cabinets

$1,000 - $65,000

Kitchen cabinet maker

$2,000 - $30,000

Custom shelving

$5,000 - $14,000

a male woodworker completing a project

How to estimate the cost of cabinet making and repair

The best way to estimate the costs involved in cabinet making and repair is to get a range of quotes for the specific task you need.

It is possible to make a rough guess of the cost of new cabinet installation based on industry standards. Stock cabinets typically cost around $150 to $250 per linear foot, plus the installation cost. Semi-custom cabinets can cost around $250 to $350, and custom ones are usually priced at $350 or beyond per linear foot, depending on the style, details, design, and quality. 

Repair tasks are typically estimated on a time-based method. You should factor in at least $30 to $60 per hour for cabinet repair tasks and potentially more for valued or valuable furniture.

What does a cabinet maker do?

Cabinet makers typically make and install wooden furniture - often cabinets. This can involve shaping, cutting, and designing the wood for the furniture. Or it can include assembling parts that have been pre-cut elsewhere. 

Even if a cabinet maker is working with pre-cut parts, they are still likely to have to customize those parts for installation in specific sites. Cabinet makers are often called upon during the design, creation, and installation of household and business kitchens.

Although cabinet makers work mainly with wood, they are also often adept at using other materials, such as glass, stone, vinyl, or metal. 

Cabinet makers can also be highly specialized. For instance, cabinet makers can be specialised antique furniture reproducers or restorers or specialised chair and couch makers.

How is a cabinet maker different from a carpenter? 

Both trades deal with wood. Both require the cutting, shaping, preparation, and finishing of building materials. But cabinet makers tend to have a different emphasis than carpenters and additional training. Cabinet-making work tends to be situated inside and centers on internal fittings in buildings, such as cabinets, tables, kitchen cupboards, and desks.

Carpenters, on the other hand, often work outside, erecting larger structures for dwellings. For cabinet makers, attention to detail is crucial. Skilled cabinet makers can spend almost as much time honing and refining the intricate wooden finishes on a chair as a carpenter can spend erecting a wooden veranda. Of course, many carpenters are also skilled cabinet makers and vice versa. But the difference between the two trades is one of training and emphasis. 

Common cabinet making and repair tasks

Although the list of jobs a cabinet maker might be asked to perform is infinite, some tasks arise more often than others. Some of the everyday tasks performed by cabinet makers include:

  • Preparing and installing prefabricated furniture or fittings, such as flat pack kitchens

  • Designing kitchens, shelving, and other home fittings

  • Building pieces of furniture to order

  • Designing and building individualized furniture

  • Repairing wooden, antique, or valued furniture

  • Repairing locks, hinges, and doors inside homes

  • Lacquering, staining, or laminating furniture or fittings

  • Making cost estimates for clients

  • Translating a site layout into a manufactured furniture design, for example, for a kitchen installation

  • Choosing and fitting hardware additions to furniture, such as handles or hinges.

a young female apprentice sanding a cabinet part in a woodshop

Questions to ask your cabinet maker

You might want to consider asking your cabinet maker or repairer these questions before or after you hire them:

  • Can they show you examples of their previous work?

  • Do they have any specializations?

  • How are they proposing to charge you? If the work should turn out to be more complicated than first thought, who will bear the cost of this?

  • What are the materials they most like to work with? What materials do they propose to work with on your task?

  • Will they be working with others’ on the job?

  • How long do they expect the task to take?

  • Will they provide you with their design drawings? (You might want to get a second opinion on them).

  • Is the cost of installation included in their quote?

  • If the cabinets or other furnishings are made elsewhere, where are they made, and who is the supplier?

What is the process for having new cabinets made?

The process for getting new cabinets made begins with you. You’ll research what kind of cabinets you are after, check out cabinet style and design inspiration online and elsewhere, and collect photos and images to show to the cabinet maker later. Review the quotes you get on Airtasker and select a few tradespeople to have initial consultations with. 

Depending on the complexity of your task, the process might require a cabinet maker (or yourself) to develop designs and sketch drawings of the items you are seeking. They might also need to take measurements of the location where the things will be installed. The cabinet maker might also prepare two and three-dimensional drawings or representations of what is proposed. 

At some point, the cabinet maker might also need to make you a formal proposal of what they would make for you. This proposal might cover factors such as finishes, accessories and hardware, color matching to your existing decor, and what would be involved in cabinet creation and installation. 

Example cabinet-making and repair listings from Airtasker

Need some guidance on how to write your listing for seeking a cabinet maker? Here’s how some other people have advertised on Airtasker for cabinet makers:  

Price guide

$2,000 - $30,000

low

$2,000

median

$10,000

high

$30,000

Low, median and high bar chart distribuiton

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FAQs about cabinet making

Cabinet makers usually charge a total fixed cost for the job, rather than per hour. This is because their cost needs to be based on the construction techniques and level of customization and detail required, as well as the materials you select. On average, this can work out to be between $13 to $27 per hour.

As the name suggests, a cabinet designer is not necessarily a person who creates the items you might be seeking, but one who designs them. A skilled cabinet designer is usually someone adept at software that can make three-dimensional representations of proposed cabinets and other fittings. However many cabinet makers will also have cabinet design skills, and many cabinet designers will also have experience in constructing and installing cabinets.

In a typical first consultation with a cabinet maker you should discuss things like design, materials, finishes, hardware and accessories, budget and timings. The clearer your idea of how you would like your cabinets, the more efficient your consultation will be. However, it’s also perfectly fine for you to ask the cabinet maker for their advice on cabinet style and functionality.

Normally installation is part of the cabinet making process, but this can vary depending on the project. Make sure to confirm this with your tradesperson before you agree on a price.

Depending on what type of cabinets you need and how customized they are, it can take 2-4 weeks for your new cabinets to be made and installed. Alternatively, if you are only seeking help with a repair task, the job might take as little as an hour or two. The length of time required will also vary according to the standard to which you require the work to be completed.

Cabinet makers usually charge a total fixed cost for the job, rather than per hour. This is because their cost needs to be based on the construction techniques and level of customization and detail required, as well as the materials you select. On average, this can work out to be between $13 to $27 per hour.

In a typical first consultation with a cabinet maker you should discuss things like design, materials, finishes, hardware and accessories, budget and timings. The clearer your idea of how you would like your cabinets, the more efficient your consultation will be. However, it’s also perfectly fine for you to ask the cabinet maker for their advice on cabinet style and functionality.

Depending on what type of cabinets you need and how customized they are, it can take 2-4 weeks for your new cabinets to be made and installed. Alternatively, if you are only seeking help with a repair task, the job might take as little as an hour or two. The length of time required will also vary according to the standard to which you require the work to be completed.

As the name suggests, a cabinet designer is not necessarily a person who creates the items you might be seeking, but one who designs them. A skilled cabinet designer is usually someone adept at software that can make three-dimensional representations of proposed cabinets and other fittings. However many cabinet makers will also have cabinet design skills, and many cabinet designers will also have experience in constructing and installing cabinets.

Normally installation is part of the cabinet making process, but this can vary depending on the project. Make sure to confirm this with your tradesperson before you agree on a price.

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