Complete Guide: What to Expect with Cabinet Installation Process

 Kevin Dean | Budget & Design Team | Dean Cabinetry

By Kevin Dean

We’ve created this blog to provide you with valuable insights into cabinet installations. We understand that installing cabinets can be a complex process, but we’re here to help make it easier for you. By knowing what to expect and being mindful of potential challenges, we can guide you towards a smoother and more successful installation experience.

kitchen cabinets during installation

There are 4 steps within our installation phase at Dean Cabinetry:

  1. Scheduling
  2. Cabinet Installation
  3. Punch List(s)
  4. Follow Up

Step 1: Scheduling

Once your cabinets are ordered, an install manager will reach out. Then we’ll schedule a phone call to review this process and discuss your timeline and questions.

We will send you a copy of the contract and the final plans.

Please notify us any install requests, items not specifically noted will be left to our professional discretion.

Next, we will offer dates through email. Please confirm the dates through email.

Please do not consider your dates confirmed until you have received email confirmation. Please notify us of any schedule changes as soon as possible.

Items to consider:

  • We typically book kitchen installations 4-5 weeks out.
  • Install should be before the final coat on the floors and before the final coat of paint.
  • The appliances can not be in the space during install.
  • Please have your knobs and pulls onsite.
  • The final balance is due prior to delivery. Please mail this in when we schedule your delivery.

Step 2: Cabinet Installation by Our Professional Installers

We typically deliver your cabinets before the install. Our delivery team will call ahead. They will need to place:

  • Large cabinets directly into the space, not in an adjacent room or garage.
  • Small cabinets and other pieces may need to be placed in an adjacent room or garage.

Our installers are excited to be your cabinetry partner. They are carefully selected subcontractors we use on a regular basis.

Our teams typically arrive between 8am and 9am and leave between 4pm and 5pm. They should be the only workers in the space.

Please be onsite during the last day of install to:

  • Choose hardware locations
  • Review each cabinet with your installer and create a Punch List (defective or incomplete items)
dean cabinetry installer

Step 3: Punch List(s)

We understand that you need some time to use and inspect each cabinet. If you notice anything, please let us know. We are eager to resolve any defects.

We will email you the Punch List and schedule a phone call to review it. We will ask for your email confirmation on the punch list, before it is ordered.

Our goal is to return within two weeks. Depending on the supply chain and if items need to be ordered, this may or may not be possible.

We work diligently to complete your project within one Punch List. If necessary, we will return for PL2. After PL2, your installation will be considered complete and your project will move to the follow up stage.

Please keep in mind that we are more than happy to come out to do maintenance, adjustments, or touch ups for you. It is in our best interest to keep your kitchen looking great for years to come, so please do not hesitate to give us a call.

Step 4: Follow Up

If you request additional items outside of the contract and plans, these items will be considered follow up items.

If the client requests additional punch list items after PL2, these items will be considered follow up items.

Dean Cabinetry reserves the right to charge a $150 “additional work” fee for follow up items including:

  • Additional visits due to unforeseen conditions created by the homeowner and/or contractor.
  • Touch up items due to damage caused by other contractors on site.
  • Hardware installation

Follow up items will be completed at the convenience of Dean Cabinetry’s installation schedule.

Touch ups and adjustments within the first year are free of charge.

Touch ups, adjustments, and other work beyond one year will be charged on a time and materials basis.

cabinets being installed


What is a punch list?

A punch list is a list of defective or incomplete items that need to be resolved.

Can my contractor or myself install the cabinets?

Absolutely.  If you choose to go in this direction, please notify your designer.

When you choose to install the cabinetry yourself or use another contractor, you are also accepting the management of punch list, final field measurements, and the final materials list.

When should I schedule my countertop template and installation?

Generally, your countertop template should be scheduled for after the install.  Countertop install can occur before the punch list visit.

This is a general rule and does not apply to all situations.

What should I look out for with my countertop template and install?

We recommend being onsite for the template as the technicians will have questions for you about the layout of your countertop.  Once the stone is cut, it is very difficult to change.

Most countertop companies prefer your appliances be installed prior to the countertop template.  This is most important for slide in ranges and farm sinks.

What about demolition?

Demolition is typically managed by the homeowner or contractor.  However, Dean Cabinetry offers demolition services.  If preparation work is needed in between demo and install, it is the responsibility of the client or contractor.

Who installs the appliances?

Dean Cabinetry does not install or move appliances in your home or attach integrated appliance panels.

Appliances should be installed after the cabinetry.  This will allow the cabinet installers to perfectly level the cabinets.  Then the appliances can be installed and leveled to fit inside the cabinetry.

When the appliance model numbers are provided to Dean Cabinetry, our installers will prepare the appliance openings to the specs.  Our installers will tape the spec sheets inside of the openings.

Appliance installation is difficult.  Appliances, including the sink, should be delivered to the site but kept out of the cabinet installation area.  Your appliance provider will provide installation options.

What will the installation be like?

We expect your install to take 1 to 5 days, but this may vary.  Once installation is complete, the installer will review the cabinetry with you, and take note of any items that need to be replaced or adjusted.  We will fix or order the punch list items and return at a later date to complete the project.

What does Dean Cabinetry take responsibility for?

When we install your cabinets we take full responsibility for all details, dimensions, touch ups and adjustments, now and into the future.  Our referrals come from keeping your kitchen looking great.

We take responsibility for what is reasonably expected and we do our best to help guide you through the rest.  The following is a list of what we are not responsible for:

  • Any appliance defects caused during cabinet installation.  The appliances should not be in the space during cabinet installation.
  • Scuff marks made in the drywall and paint.  We do our best to avoid these marks but they are often unavoidable and should be expected during installation.
  • Dean Cabinetry installers will do their best to protect your finished floors with moving blankets during installation.  Scratches to the floor are rare but may be unavoidable.  If your floor is scratched we will take reasonable measures to touch up the scratches but cannot take responsibility beyond touch ups, including financial responsibility.
  • Providing knobs and pulls, unless otherwise specified in the contract. 
  • Integrated appliance panel attachment, unless otherwise specified in the contract. 
  • Template and installation of countertops, unless otherwise specified in the contract. 
  • Plumbing and/or electrical disconnect and reconnect.
  • Asbestos and/or lead identification and/or removal/disposal.
  • Backsplash removal, spackling, sheetrock work, painting and touch ups (other than for cabinets).

When is my cabinetry installation complete?

Your cabinetry install will officially be complete once all of the punch list items have been resolved and closed with PL1 or PL2.  The next step is to complete any follow up items and the other final finishes to the project.

Please keep in mind that we at Dean Cabinetry are more than happy to come out to do maintenance, adjustments, or touch ups for you.  It is in our best interest to keep your kitchen looking great for years to come, so please do not hesitate to give us a call for adjustments.