Are you wanting to renovate your kitchen, but are thinking that custom cabinetry wouldn’t fit into your budget? Custom cabinetry makes more sense financially – it’s more durable, it gives you more choices, is made to fit your kitchen exactly, plus so much more. Find out why it is a better investment than big box store cabinetry.  Contact Cerwood to order your custom cabinetry today!

Custom Cabinetry from a Local Company vs. Big Box Store Cabinets

Your budget is one of the big deciding factors when it comes to choosing what goes into your kitchen renovation. The temptation to cut corners wherever you can in order to make your money go further may be great, however, purchasing the cheapest kitchen cabinets may not be your wisest investment.


It is true that you get what you pay for and what seems like a great deal initially may not give you the look or the durability that you were hoping for.

Custom cabinetry vs. Big box comparison chart

custom cabinetry comparison chart

Choice: Vast Selection vs Limited Selection

A custom cabinetry company will be able to offer you an extensive selection of styles, colours, materials, and finishes to suit your budget. If you have a particular vision of what you would like your kitchen to look like, a custom cabinetry company can bring it to life because of the flexibility that they offer.


A big box store, on the other hand, has a limited selection of cabinets in stock to choose from. You will have to be satisfied on something that is perhaps close to what you had in mind but not exactly.

Sizing: Exact Fit vs Approximate Fit

A custom cabinetry company can design your cabinets to fit your kitchen exactly. Unusual layouts are not problem since your cabinets can be made to the exact measurements and layout of your space.


Big box store cabinets usually come in 3″ increments which means that your kitchen has to adapt to your cabinets. Because of this your design options will be limited and you may have to use fillers or put up with extra spaces in order for the cabinets to fit your space. For example, standard cabinet boxes are 15″ or 18″ wide. If you have 16 inches of space between your dishwasher and the wall, then you will have to hide 1″ of space somehow.


Because you may have to settle for cabinets that don’t fit your space, you will possibly be losing out on valuable storage space and functionality. In a kitchen, every inch of storage space is valuable, so getting custom built will ensure that you have the maximum space possible.

kitchen island

Quality: High Quality vs Lower Quality to Keep Costs Down

When you choose custom cabinetry, you can also choose the type of materials you want. Most custom cabinet makers will offer you high quality, furniture grade plywood and real wood options. They also have a selection of high quality hardware that is guaranteed to last.


Big box stores keep their costs down by using lower quality materials for their cabinets such as melamine, which is more susceptible to shocks and scratches and is difficult to retouch if it gets scratched.

Designs: Experienced Kitchen Designers vs Part-Time Staff

Most custom cabinetry companies will have a professional kitchen designer on staff who will be able to help you design the perfect kitchen and layout for your space. These designers are usually very experienced and familiar with kitchen designs, will listen to your needs and desires, and be able to design a space that will fit your particular situation.


The staff at most box stores rarely have the experience of training that a professional designer has. They are often part-time staff and may have very little experience in design and will therefore not be as qualified to help you design your kitchen like a professional designer can.

custom kitchen island

Time: 5 to 8 weeks vs 1 to 3 weeks

Custom cabinetry will take a bit longer because it needs to be manufactured from scratch. It can take anywhere from 5 to 8 weeks depending on the size of your kitchen, the types of materials your order, and the level of customization.


Big box store cabinets can be installed much quicker, anywhere from 1 to 3 weeks, because you are getting a ready-made product. Waiting a few weeks longer to get the exact cabinets that you want is probably worth the extra wait in the long run.

Measurements: By Professionals vs By Part-Time Staff

A custom cabinetry company will be able to take accurate measurements of your kitchen and will be able to order your cabinets to fit exactly.


You may have to take your own measurements when you order from a big box store. If there are staff who will do it for you, they may not be experienced enough to get exact numbers.

kitchen cabinets kitchener

Payment Policies: Payment Plans vs 100% Upfront

Custom cabinet companies often allow you to pay a deposit and then the balance later upon installation.


Big box stores usually require 100% of the payment upfront.

Installation: Professsionals vs Part-Time Staff

When you are dealing with a custom cabinetry company, they will often have their own professional staff install your cabinets. Their installers are familiar with their products and are highly experienced with cabinet installation, giving you a very professional result.


Big box stores, if they offer installation, will usually contract this job out. The installers you get may or may not be familiar with the product they are installing and may not have the experience needed to do a great job. Other box stores such as IKEA sell cabinetry that needs to be assembled as well. The price tag may seem amazing at first but once you factor in the amount of labour involved in assembling and installing your cabinets, the price will be a lot closer to custom cabinetry.

kitchen layout

Pricing: All Inclusive Pricing vs Upsells

When you get a quote for your custom cabinets, it will include everything such as your installation and special features like soft closing drawers and doors.


Big box stores will quote you a price that doesn’t include extra features. You will be charged extra for these features.

Durability: Very Durable vs Less Durable

Because of the high quality of materials used to make custom cabinetry, your cabinets will be much more durable. They will last longer and will wear better, as they are less susceptible to scratching and breaking. In time, if you want a change, custom cabinets can be refinished while a big box version may not last long enough to even consider refinishing and are often made from materials that can’t be refinished.

Because they last longer, custom cabinets are more environmentally friendly. They are a less “disposable” option than big box cabinets. In addition, if they are locally made, then they are also better for the environment because they haven’t traveled all over the world before being installed in your home.

Lower quality, big box store cabinets will generally be less durable and won’t last as long, showing signs of wear and tear faster.

Resale Value: Generally Higher vs Generally Lower

A high quality kitchen that includes custom kitchens cabinets will generally give your home a higher re-sale value than a kitchen that has been designed with standard, lower quality cabinets.

cerwood custom cabinetry

Trust Cerwood for Custom CAbinetry that exceeds the big box stores

If you are looking for the best value in kitchen cabinetry that exceeds what the big box stores have to offer, order custom cabinetry from Cerwood Custom Cabinetry.

Cerwood is a locally owned and operated custom cabinetry company that has over 40 year of experience. All of our cabinets are made in our New Hamburg facility with care and to your exact specifications.  If you want the best value for your renovation dollar, contact Cerwood today.



“…We would recommend Cerwood & Family to anyone looking for a high end kitchen, at a reasonable price! We absolutely LOVE our kitchen!”
– Cathy and Steve B.


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