I have to submit a bid for a client to make new doors for her kitchen
cabinets and am having a hard time knowing where to start. Usually I
add up the time and materials that I think the project will take and
base the bid on that. I heard somewhere that most cabinet fronts are
bid by the square foot which threw me off some, it doesn't help that
this will be a new avenue for me so guessing the time is somewhat hard.
Each door is a different size, which makes it somewhat more complex.
The uppers are going to have inset ribbed glass, with solid lowers, all
painted white. I am planning to use poplar with a very (repeat very)
simple shaper profile for the stick and rails.
Ok, as always any help would be greatly appreciated
I would look at two things, the first (to me) being the most important.
That would be time and materials. If you don't have the machinery
that a cab shop would have to knock them out, you will take more time
to make them. If you don't buy a thousand board feet of cabinet
material from your supplier you won't get the same price he does. So I
would come up with my own estimate based on my best figures.
For comparison, I would call a couple of places like Upscale said and
see how much they would charge. If they are significantly cheaper then
I can make them, I would have them make the doors to my specs.
I quit making my doors as I couldn't compete with an aggressive cab
shop. When I need new fronts for cabs here unless they are something
silly easy like half laps, I just go have them made.
If this is a job that is one thing, but if you are looking to work with
your own tools on this project and do it all yourself, make you
estimate up and forget what competitors charge. Someone will always be
Are you doing this for profit, and how many doors?
I've tried every way to beat the door shops at this game; from doing it all
myself; to having them mill the parts with me doing the cutting and
assembly; to them milling, cutting and me assembling; to me just helping; to
finally accepting that most are set up to build a more consistent set of
doors, with more styles to choose from, at a cheaper price, and a damn sight
Personally, I would bid the job as GC, sub-contracting the doors and drawer
fronts out, and doing the finishing and installation. If you are doing this
for profit, you stand a chance of actually making money by doing so.
Although I would definitely find a local shop that specializes in doors,
there are a plethora of door companies selling their wares at competitive
prices on the Internet. However you decide to proceed, browsing the latter
would be a good start in working up your bid.
Here just one price sheet you can find online but remeber these are
going to be cheap doors with no attention to detail. Your doors will
be better and should cost a lot more.
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