In Home Design

How Much Does It Cost to Paint Kitchen Cabinets

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Painting kitchen cabinets can be an excellent way to update a kitchen for less money than a full remodel. The hard part is that painting cabinets can be a difficult and time-consuming process, especially if you want it done right.

The cost to paint kitchen cabinets can be anywhere from $200 to $4500 depending on the size of your kitchen, the complexity of the kitchen, and how much work you do yourself. Of course, this is going to increase the cost of painting kitchen cabinets but it can be worth it for a lot of people.

What Does it Cost to Have Kitchen Cabinets Painted

There is no easy answer to how much it costs to have kitchen cabinets painted. It is dependent on a lot of different variables unfortunately. There are a few costs that you can rely on as a starting point though.

paint kitchen cabinets cost

A good typical range for the cost to paint kitchen cabinets is $300 to $3700 nationally. Of course, this will again depend on your kitchen layout. One of the most important variables is also the size of your kitchen.

Small kitchens can cost as little as $200 to $300 if you have only a few cabinets and a very simple layout. If you have a medium size kitchen, anywhere between 100 square feet and 200 square feet, the cost will be a little bit more. You’d be looking at a cost to paint your kitchen cabinets between $500 and $1500.

Large kitchens, with variable layouts are complicated to estimate. You can have a large kitchen with a simple layout that is far less expensive than a large kitchen with a complicated layout. Expect to pay anywhere between $1000 and $4500 to have your kitchen cabinets repainted in a large kitchen.

Factors that Affect the Cost to Paint Kitchen Cabinets

There are several factors that can greatly affect the cost to paint kitchen cabinets. Some of them are more variable than others. Don’t be too afraid to see how changing one of these variables can change your cost estimate for painting your cabinets.

6 factors that affect the cost to paint kitchen cabinets

Cabinet Paint Type and Quality

If you’ve ever shopped through a hardware store’s paint aisles, you know that paint comes in a very wide range of prices. Lower quality paint will cost less but will require more coats of paint which will cost you more money in materials and labor.

Lower quality paint will also cost you more in a few years when it starts to chip and wear out because it wasn’t meant for the intense use that cabinets get. Cabinet doors, even in the most gently used kitchen, get abused beyond any other painted surface in the home.

The best paint to use for kitchen cabinets is oil-based paint because of its ability to set up hard as a rock quickly. Latex paint just can’t stand up to the slamming of kitchen cabinets. If you want the quality of an oil-based paint without the cleanup, check out an alkyd paint like Benjamin Moore’s Advance line. It holds up like oil-based paint but cleans up as easily as water-based paint.

Method of Cabinet Painting

The way your kitchen cabinets are painted will also make a vast difference in the cost of painting your kitchen cabinets. If your cabinets are painted with a brush or roller, the cost will be lower because there is less set up required.

A more expensive way to paint your kitchen cabinets is with a spray gun and spray booth. This method is more expensive because there is much more setup and equipment required however it results in a much smoother, more professional finish.

Spraying cabinets produces the best paint finish

Cabinet Design and Layout

complicated kitchen cabinet design

The cabinet design and layout can increase or decrease the cost to paint kitchen cabinets. Simpler cabinet designs, like those with flat faces will cost less to paint than those with more ornate details and moulding on the face.

The layout of your kitchen can alter the cost to paint cabinets as well though it is one of the less important factors. Complex kitchen designs increase the cost only because they tend to have more doors and drawers. Simple kitchen designs, with straight runs of cabinets, will cost less to paint.

Total Number of Cabinets or Kitchen Size

The total number of cabinets and the size of the kitchen will affect the cost to paint kitchen cabinets. The average cost to paint kitchen cabinets is typically between $120 and $170 per cabinet. So you can see how that adds up.

large kitchen

Color of Paint

There are a couple specific reasons why the color of paint will increase the cost of painting kitchen cabinets. The most common one currently is painting lighter colors over darker colors, or stained cabinets. This requires more primer, more paint, and a better technique which results in a higher cost.

Another popular trend right now is to paint your kitchen cabinets multiple different colors. If you add colors to your kitchen cabinet color scheme, it will increase the price because the contractor will have to set up multiple times and buy more paint.

painting labor

Labor

The labor to paint your kitchen cabinets is one of the most important factors in determining the cost to paint kitchen cabinets. You can see that as you read through every factor listed here. 

The more the contractor has to set up, the more material the contractor needs, the more intricate the design, the more money it costs. This is because the contractor has to take more time and effort to give a flawless finish.

What’s the Difference in Painting Kitchen Cabinets Cost vs Refacing Kitchen Cabinets

Painting kitchen cabinets costs less than refacing kitchen cabinets. Painting your cabinets involves only painting your existing cabinetry a new color whereas refacing them involves putting new doors on old cabinets and then painting the boxes to match.

Since it doesn’t cost as much in materials to paint a set of cabinets, the cost to paint your kitchen cabinets will be less. If you don’t like the profile of your existing cabinet doors or drawers, you should consider refacing. But if you like the moulding and details, save some money and paint the kitchen cabinets.

Painting Kitchen Cabinets Cost: Hire a Pro or DIY

The real question when you are painting your cabinets is whether you are going to do it yourself or hire professional help. There are some real benefits to both. If you do the project yourself, you’ll save some money.

However, a professional would have the right space and the right equipment in order to do the job well. Don’t misunderstand, there are professionals that are not worth the money they cost. But that’s why you should always get at least three estimates and choose the contractor that seems to work the best with you.

There will come a moment when you feel you have to choose between using better materials or paying for help getting the job done. If you can be patient and do the job correctly, you will find it more beneficial to pay for better paint, more sandpaper, and primer to really get the cabinets painted correctly.

Pros have the time, equipment, and experience to paint your kitchen cabinets correctly.

How to Save Money on the Cost of Painting Kitchen Cabinets

  • Spend on quality paint that covers in less coats and lasts longer
  • Don’t buy new material to protect work area, just new brushes, rollers, and paint
  • Accurately estimate amount of paint needed
  • Do some of the prep work yourself

How do I Prep my Kitchen for Painting Kitchen Cabinets

The most important part of painting your kitchen cabinets is the prep work. Even if you buy the best paint on the market and use the best techniques to apply it, without the right prep work, your cabinets will look terrible.

So make sure to not only use decent materials and decent procedures. Clear off any existing paint or shiny finishes with either a stripper or by sanding it off. If you do sand it off, you need to go through rough grits at first and work to progressively finer grits.

prep kitchen cabinets for painting

Remove Cabinet Doors and Drawers

The first step to repainting your kitchen cabinets is removing all of the doors and drawers. Make sure you use small pieces of painters tape to carefully label which door goes to which cabinet. You will definitely find this helpful when you put your kitchen back together and you won’t have to guess where to put each door.

Make sure as well to keep all of your hardware together in a cup or baggie. Even if you are planning on replacing your hardware as part of your update, you will want the old one as a sample to make sure that you purchase the correct profile in the new hardware.

Fill the screw holes where each hinge and pull were, even if you plan on reusing the old ones. It will make sure that the screws fit tightly when you replace the hardware. And if you are going to buy new hardware, you will not be able to find hardware that matches the original holes.

Clear the Workspace

You will find that when you repaint your kitchen cabinets, it is an incredibly messy job. Not only is there splatter from the actual painting that you need to watch out for but you also need a ton of space to lay out all of the doors and drawers.

A kitchen table is not nearly enough space. And even though you need a lot of space, somewhere outdoors isn’t really going to work either. If you try to dry your newly painted cabinets outdoors, insects will land on them or it could rain.

A clear workspace is crucial for a good paint job on your kitchen cabinets.

The best setup to paint your kitchen cabinets is a large garage with plastic on the floors and walls to prevent damage from roller spray. You also need to make sure that you have a cleanup area somewhere nearby so that you don’t mess up your new paint job trying to clean things.

Remove Appliances

If you are spraying your cabinets to repaint them, make sure to remove appliances or cover them VERY well. If you don’t, you will probably damage them in some way from the paint job. The last thing you want is to have beautiful, newly painted kitchen cabinets, only to pair them with paint splattered or stained appliances.

Why Should you Paint Kitchen Cabinets

Painting kitchen cabinets costs money, sure. However, it can be a wonderful home improvement project. It can easily and quickly refresh an outdated kitchen and since it is less expensive than replacing your cabinets, it can save you money.

In fact, repainting kitchen cabinets is one of the first major items on most flippers’ project lists. Many homeowners have found that painting cabinets is one of their favorite projects as well though.

  • Refreshes outdated cabinets
  • Less expensive than replacing
  • Simple update for a kitchen
  • Add value to home

The best part is that while, yes, painting kitchen cabinets costs money, it can add tremendous value to your home. On average, painting your cabinets can add roughly $1,500 to your home’s value. (https://www.nhance.com/ames/how-painting-your-cabinets-can-boost-your-homes-value/)

Painting Kitchen Cabinet FAQs

Is Painting Kitchen Cabinets Worth It

Yes, absolutely! If you want a quick, relatively simple, and cost-effective update to your kitchen, painting your kitchen cabinets is most definitely worth it. Especially if you think that changing the color of your cabinets is all you need to do to update your kitchen.

painting kitchen cabinets

Is it Hard to Paint Kitchen Cabinets

The hardest part of painting your kitchen cabinets is that you have to be patient. If you try to rush the process, you will inevitably be disappointed in the end. This starts at the beginning with your prep work and it goes all the way through putting the kitchen back together.

What Does it Cost to Paint Kitchen Cabinets Yourself

The cost to paint kitchen cabinets yourself is as simple as paying for materials. Depending heavily on your kitchen size and layout, plan on spending somewhere between $150 and $500 to paint your cabinets yourself.

How Much Does it Cost to Have a Professional Paint Kitchen Cabinets

To get a professional to help you paint your kitchen cabinets, plan on spending anywhere between $200 and $1500. Of course, this runs the gamut and it is heavily dependent on your kitchen size and layout.

You should also plan on getting at least three estimates before you decide on a professional. Make sure that you know what materials are going to be used, what clean up is included, and what the final expectations are.

Conclusion

Painting your kitchen cabinets has a price, though the cost to paint kitchen cabinets is far less than replacing your cabinets. This home project also allows for a quick and easy update so that you find your kitchen more aesthetically appealing as well.

Make sure when you paint your cabinets that you take the time to do it right, use quality materials to do the job, and set things up correctly to protect the area from splatter. Of course, you can also hire a professional. Either way, your kitchen will immediately get a facelift for very little cost.