Kitchen Appliances VS Cabinets: Which One Go First

Whether you are building a new home or remodeling an existing one, there’s a good chance that you won’t find enough space to bring all your ideas to life. In your kitchen, installing a countertop alone will take up a huge chunk of the space. And then you have to deal with the crucial question of appliances or cabinets first? Here’s what you need to know to find a solution to this dilemma.

Cabinets and Appliances – Things to Consider

While there are upsides and downsides to both, you will need to take the following points into consideration – 

If your focus is on kitchen remodeling to enhance its spaciousness and style, opt for cabinets first.

If your focus is on improving the kitchen’s functionality, opt for appliances first. 

No matter what your reason is, make sure to take the measurements twice, as it will help you make purchase decisions without making any mistakes. 

Proper planning and sticking to rules will allow you to stay within the allotted budget without stressing about the entire process. 

Give Priority to the Kitchen Layout

Rerouting the electrical outlets, giving the water lines an extension, and moving your gas lines are different ways to increase the budget for your kitchen remodeling. Appliances that are ‘big’ provide an anchor to the room, which is why you have to visualize the entire room to select the right spot for placing such appliances. 

However, there are some unsaid rules that apply while arranging your kitchen, which includes placing the dishwasher and sink side by side to ease the process of scrubbing followed by washing. Again, you cannot place the oven and refrigerator in proximity to each other as it will lead to an increase in electricity bills. 

Going For Appliances First

Confused about appliances or cabinets first? Opting for appliances first is the right decision if you prioritize the functionality of your kitchen. After all, the kitchen is where you have to prepare, store and eat food with the help of different appliances. When you are driven by this thought and want to use the kitchen during the remodeling or building process, you will tend to purchase your appliances first, building your cabinets around these appliances. 

The Upsides of Going Appliances First

You Will Be Able To Feed Your Family – Since the appliances are the lifeline of the kitchen, you will be able to keep your food fresh, reheat leftovers, keep the dishes clean, and of course cook your meals on time. Based on the number of family members and your cooking requirements, you need to make your choice of appliances with proper capabilities and capacities. 

Proper Accommodation – Generally, kitchen layouts are designed to be ‘work triangle‘ shaped. The vertices of this triangle include the sink, refrigerator, and range. This helps to maximize your convenience when preparing food as everything is made accessible and within each other’s range. Opting for appliances first gives you the advantage of measuring out the preview of the ‘work triangle‘ to make sure that everything is accommodated properly. It gets more convenient to plan if you already know the things you want to add to the kitchen.

Getting Appliances Of Your Choice – While it is imperative to take into account the practical aspects of having appliances in your kitchen, opting for appliances first while building or remodeling gives you the freedom of choosing the style and size of your appliances. You have the option of buying appliances that you have longed for, whether it is an induction oven or owning a ‘French door refrigerator’. This is the chance you have to design your kitchen on the basis of the appliances you intend to place in it. 

Permanent Changes – You cannot be indecisive about kitchen appliances. There is not only a huge investment, but they are also huge in size. It is tough to change appliances that are permanent once they are installed. You surely wouldn’t want to purchase a new oven soon after you have already invested in a new one. Once you are sure of what appliances you want in the kitchen, you can peacefully move on to the next step in the construction process. 

Technically Prepared – If you are aware of the appliances that you want to add to the kitchen you will have a good idea of what you must add for plumbing and power. Maybe your plan requires the range to have a separate power outlet, or maybe your new refrigerator needs a water dispenser that is built-in. Once you have the technical issues sorted out, installing the newly-arrived appliances will be much more convenient. 

The only downside with going for appliances first is that in case the measurements of the appliances are not right, they might occupy more space, which would mean that you will be limited in your choices of cabinet sizes and types. 

Going For Cabinets First

There are certain designers whose focal point in a kitchen is its cabinets and the reason behind this is appliances don’t last as long as cabinets. Moreover, cabinets are available in a variety of colors, finishes, and styles that have the potential to either break or make the kitchen’s tone. 

The Upsides of Going Cabinets First

Building the Foundation – Most certified designers believe that cabinetry lays the foundation for a kitchen. This is because the design of the cabinet dictates the utilization of available space and provides suggestions for the placement and size of different appliances. 

Not Replaceable – Faucets, appliances, and countertops can all be replaced easily. However, after the cabinetry has been installed, it cannot be replaced till such time you go for another remodeling of the kitchen. 

No Need for Boxes – A big reason why it is wise to go for cabinets in your kitchen first is that you don’t have to purchase new boxes. Once the cabinets are placed, your appliances and other kitchen items can go directly into this space, sparing you the trouble of having to box up your items and appliances and then reopen those boxes to arrange the stuff into your kitchen once the cabinets are done. 

However, the downside of going for cabinets first is that today’s appliances are no longer available in ‘standard’ size. The cabinets must adapt on the basis of the size of the appliances; for instance, a side-by-side refrigerator today comes in widths ranging between 30 inches and 36 inches, and for both these sizes there are separate sets of cabinets. Now, this size variation when applied to each appliance in the kitchen, you are compelled to purchase cabinets after having the appliances installed first. 

So, Appliances or Cabinets First? 

Finally, the one thing that is clear from above is that making a choice between cabinets and appliances depends on what you visualize for the newly-made kitchen. If you have been longing to install a particular model of refrigerator or stove in your kitchen, then go for appliances first. 

But if you plan to create more space, or utilize the space in your existing kitchen then it would be better to opt for cabinets first. The only rule that you have to follow is making sure that your tape measure is right by your side because without proper measurements your kitchen remodeling or building will go for a toss.

Related articles