Just how much does a new kitchen cost on average to buy and install? This is usually one of the first thoughts to run through the heads of homeowners considering investing in a new culinary space — after all, there is no point designing a kitchen and heading off towards the showrooms, design in hand, with no idea of how much you'll actually need to achieve the space you have been dreaming of.
Although choosing a new kitchen really is one of the best bits of any self build, renovation or extension, you need to be realistic if you don't want to end up disappointed or with a half-finished kitchen.
While we can't hand you a set of exact figures for what your individual project is going to come in at, we can give you an idea. What you ultimately end up paying will depend on the size, design and specification of your chosen kitchen, as well as which supplier you end up going with. You will also need to factor in any additional work that might be required when it comes to your kitchen's installation — certain appliances and fittings cost more and take longer to fit than others, for example.
Here, we take a look at the average costs of all sorts of kitchen styles and options, from flat-pack to custom made and everything in between, so you can see just how far your budget will stretch.
New kitchen costs explained
As we said before, we have no way of predicting exactly what your project will cost. We can offer you, however, the average costs facing anyone looking at purchasing a new kitchen and explain the various elements involved in the project.
In order to give you as clear an idea as possible of kitchen prices, we have broken this guide down into sections, looking at budget kitchens, off-the-shelf options, second hand kitchens and those that are made to order, as well as giving a more general overview of average mid-priced kitchen costs.
Are cheap kitchens a false economy
If you are on a tight budget, the good news is that there are cheap kitchens available for less than £1,000. The bad news is that their quality can vary hugely.
For these kind of prices you’ll be looking at largely chipboard or MDF cabinetry, faced with the likes of melamine, veneer or laminate. They will be sold flat-packed, ready to assembled on a DIY basis and are not likely to include worktops or appliances.
On average, at the lower end of the kitchen price scale, the average spend is around £8,000, although this might be less if you plan on retaining certain elements of your old kitchen in a renovation project.
"On the lower end of the scale, a basic kitchen renovation may cost around £5,000," says explains experienced senior quantity surveyor and estimator. "This option typically involves simple upgrades, like new cabinet doors and worktops, or a flat pack kitchen, while keeping major appliances and the kitchen's general layout intact."
While most budget kitchen brands — from IKEA to DIY stores such as B&Q and Homebase, will have a fitting service, it’s less common to have at home appointments where your kitchen is measured and many people taking this route end up fitting their kitchen themselves to make further savings. Usually, you’ll measure your kitchen yourself and attend a design appointment where a 3D design will be generated.
Budget kitchens are often available to take away that day and if not, should be delivered within several weeks at most.
Pay attention to details such as what fittings are included with a budget kitchen. IKEA supplies all its kitchens with BLUM fittings, which, incidentally, are also regularly used by luxury kitchen brands.
If you want to save further, what else can you do?
"The key costs involved in a kitchen renovation are materials and labour. The biggest percentage of the material cost will be the purchase of the kitchen units, worktop and appliances," explains Tim Phillips. "I always buy just the kitchen units and doors/drawer fronts from the kitchen company before purchasing the granite/stone worktops from a third-party company, who will template, supply and install."
Are flat-pack kitchens a good budget option?
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Buying a kitchen flat-packed, ready for home assembly is a great cost-alternative to have one installed for you or buying bespoke.
What you end up paying obviously depends on your supplier and what your chosen design includes. Although people can be wary of flat-packed kitchens, providing you choose a well-made product there is no reason why these cannot offer fantastic value for money. They also give your the chance to have a go at fitting a kitchen on a DIY basis, offering further savings.
Flat-pack kitchens are cheaper than bespoke. If you were to top for a flat-pack kitchen from a budget range such as the Vogue range from Wren Kitchens, for example, you could expect prices to start from £1,933, including eight units, laminate worktops, an oven, hob and cooker hood, a standard sink and tap. This price does not include delivery or installation.
Do bear in mind that many flat-pack kitchens are often only comprised of cabinetry and won't include worktops, appliances or installation.
Can you buy a kitchen from a trade supplier?
If purchasing from a trade supplier, such as Benchmarx or Howdens, you won’t be able to see a price list directly from the brands, as their kitchens need to be purchased through a tradesperson with an active account.
Don’t expect to pay the trade price that your tradesperson paid for the kitchen, as there may be a mark-up for supplying the product as they’re likely to secure a discount depending on the amount of kitchens they buy annually.
How much do replacement kitchen doors cost?
Whether you’re looking to upgrade new budget kitchen units, or replace the doors of your existing kitchen, kitchen door replacement is a growing trend for those renovating their kitchens.
The average cost for replacement doors, which tend to be higher quality than those that would be provided by budget kitchen companies, for a medium-sized kitchen, would start from around £800-£1000, rising to £3,000 - £4,000 for higher quality versions.
How much do second hand kitchens cost?
Second hand kitchens can be a brilliant way to get your hands on a designer, high-quality kitchen for just a fraction of the price it would have been sold for brand new. Of course, the cost of a used kitchen is dependent on a lot of factors, including the brand, materials used, age and condition of the kitchen. It will also depend on what is included — some second hand kitchens come complete with all appliances, for example.
As a rough guide, Used Kitchen Exchange suggests that sellers take the original purchase price, halve it, and then take off a £1,000 for every year it has been in use. If the original purchase price of a kitchen was £25,000 and the owners had used it for ten years then a purchaser might expect to pay around £2,500 for it.
Another option is to buy an ex-display kitchen from a kitchen showroom — these are somewhat easier to price with discounts starting from around 50% of the price of a non-display kitchen.
Don't forget too that it is often possible to make other savings when buying a second hand kitchen.
"Buyers on The Used Kitchen Company platform can also earn money from selling their used kitchen instead of paying for dismantle, skips and sending to landfill," says Looeeze Grossman, CEO and founder of The Used Kitchen Company. "By selling your unwanted kitchen, you could earn money towards your own renovation project."
What is the average price of a mid-range kitchen?
Middle of the range kitchens are usually made to order using higher quality materials than a budget kitchen. Carcasses tend to be constructed from better quality veneered MDF or birch ply, doors may also be available in the likes of solid timber, plywood and high quality laminate. They’re likely to be available in a greater number of sizes and contain better internal storage solutions.
As part of a mid-range kitchen, you can expect the showroom treatment — entailing a more experienced designer and home visits with professional measurements which will all be factored into the price of the kitchen.
Mid-range kitchens are likely to be priced between £10,000 and £20,000 depending on size and choice of worktops and appliances.
What is the cost of a high-end kitchen?
Luxury kitchens tend to be bespoke. This type of kitchen is custom made to the exact dimensions of your space, allowing for the perfect fit of cabinetry and a chance to make the very most of every nook and cranny — in short, it will be tailored precisely to your needs.
Bespoke kitchens are usually handmade, often in the UK, and from luxury materials. Discerning bespoke kitchen brands will use solid timber for carcasses and doors.
There are now certain kitchen companies out there aiming to offer bespoke kitchens at more affordable prices. Naked Kitchens, for example, offer a completely bespoke service with prices starting from £10,000, while Olive & Barr also make beautiful bespoke kitchens starting at this price.
At the upper end of the bespoke market, you will often see starting prices closer to around £25,000, but with an almost limitless variety in materials potentially available, high-end furniture makers will see kitchen prices of £50,000 and well above.
"A simple shaker style cabinet is quicker and easier to make than a cabinet that includes beading, or a more intricate design," explains Richard Davonport, founder and managing director of Davonport. "Additionally, the shape of the cabinets can cause the price to vary, if the design includes curved cabinetry it will be more expensive. Ultimately, the more the design varies and the more individuality required, the higher the cost."
Tim Phillips is an experienced senior quantity surveyor and estimator and has worked in the construction industry for over 35 years. He has worked on many varied projects in this time, for corporates, public bodies and private residential clients, managing multi-million budgets.
For the past 13 years, Tim has worked on a freelance basis, whilst managing his rental property portfolio. He has extensive experience of undertaking his own full-scale house renovations. He is also a speaker and expert at the Homebuilding & Renovating Shows.
Looeeze is an expert in all things related to second hand and used kitchens. In 2005 she started The Used Kitchen Company, responsible for introducing the concept of recycling kitchens from showrooms and private homes, saving 1000s of tonnes of waste from landfill, promoting sustainability and introducing an ethical choice to the kitchen industry.
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Hugh is Deputy Editor of sister title Livingetc.com and former Digital Editor of homebuilding.co.uk. He has worked on a range of home, design and property magazines, including Grand Designs, Essential Kitchens, Bathrooms, Bedrooms and Good Homes. Hugh has developed a passion for modern architecture and green homes, and moonlights as an interior designer, having designed and managed projects ranging from single rooms to whole house renovations and large extensions. He's currently renovating his own Victorian terrace in Essex, DIYing as much of the work as possible. He's recently finished his kitchen renovation, which involved knocking through walls, and landscaping a courtyard garden, and is currently working on a bathroom renovation.