This is an honest guide to working with Dean Cabinetry. You should understand exactly what to expect when working with us, your Cabinet Partner.
At Dean Cabinetry, our mission is to be your Kitchen Cabinet Partners from Start to Finish, through best value & service, creating results our clients love while guaranteeing health & well-being for our employees.
We’re a family-owned and operated company, providing beautiful and functional stock, custom, and semi-custom cabinets for more than 20 years. We absolutely love what we do, and we take great pride in our work.
We want you to love your cabinetry. To make sure this happens we have developed a careful and thorough process to make sure we hit every detail. We’d like to explain this process so that we’re on the same page, and so that we can help you as best as possible.
Follow this link to learn more About Us.
Continue reading for a detailed picture of what you can expect when working with Dean Cabinetry. If you’re unsure about whether working with Dean Cabinetry is a good fit for you, read this article, Is Dean Cabinetry Right for Me?
When you first call Dean Cabinetry, you will speak with a member of our Discovery team. This team is responsible for gathering some initial information about your project. Once they gather this info, they will be pairing you with the best fit designer for you and your project.
At this stage, you are considering your options and beginning to assemble your wants and needs. We call this “Discovery” because we are working together to understand your project.
Once paired with a Dean Cabinetry designer, your project will progress to the budget stage.
As a consumer, you want to be informed and knowledgeable, even before you contact a company. We consistently create content to answer any question you might have about your new kitchen. To learn all about cabinetry and the related remodeling services, check out our Learning Center.
Kitchen renovations, or new builds that involve kitchens, can be overwhelming as there are many decisions you will need to make. Our goal is to make this an easy and stress-free process for you. If you simply want a quote for comparison purposes, or you need more detailed information, we’re happy to help.
If you’d like to speak with someone right away, give us a call: 860-643-1501.
We’re doing our best to accommodate your busy schedule by offering convenient phone calls Schedule a Phone Call.
We are available 9-5 Monday through Friday. After-hours and weekends are also available by appointment.
Once you’ve scheduled a meeting via our web portal, our Discovery Team will give you a call at your scheduled time. They will gather some initial info about what you’re looking to accomplish with your project.
The discovery team will then send you an email asking for:
Is Dean Cabinetry right for me? We feel this is an important blog for you to read which explains our process and your partnership with Dean Cabinetry.
Once the discovery team has enough information to understand your project, we will move you forward to the budgeting team, to prepare your cabinet budgets. Your budgets will be emailed to you within 48 hours (2 business days) by your designer. Your designer will also schedule your showroom appointment with you.
In the budget stage we want to:
To start, your designer will prepare and email you multiple budget options along with some proposed meeting times. Typically, we budget each project with an option for each cabinetry level. The different levels are:
These won’t be exact quotes but rather starting points. You will certainly have questions and our designers will be happy to answer them. The next step is to set up a phone call meeting or showroom appointment.
The goals of our budget meeting are:
An initial budget meeting with a designer will take 1 to 2 hours.
Determine your budget direction. If we need to meet again to discuss the budget and understand your options, we are happy to do so. We will not discuss design details in great depth until we determine a budget direction.
You want to get the best value cabinetry for your budget. Our goal is to deliver the best value cabinetry to you and your family. We can hit any price point and any level of quality. We aren’t going to pressure you one way or another, we simply want to deliver that best value.
If we start talking about the design before we determine a budget direction, we could lead you down a path that is not right for you. When the budget is not determined upfront, it becomes difficult to help you because we are on different pages. It is important that we exceed your expectations, and therefore, we need to know your limitations.
Weigh your options, prices, service providers, and pick a company to work with.
There are many cabinet providers to choose from. Most of them are quality companies that really care about you as their customer. They want your project to come out right and they are willing to invest a lot to make sure it does. Your reasons and concerns for choosing between them matter; make sure you weigh the pros and cons of each before you make a decision. Our designers will be happy to discuss what to look for when selecting a provider.
Check out these links:
We are very willing to invest our full attention, time, and energy into your project. Going over design revisions again and again is what we do to ensure your project comes out right. We love working with you to find the best value and design for your space. We would love to help everyone with their project, but our time and resources are limited. To ensure that our committed clients are taken care of, we are unable to invest in your project without a commitment to us as your cabinetry provider and partner.
A verbal agreement with your designer, that you are moving forward with Dean Cabinetry, is all we need. With your oral commitment, we will be happy to give you our full design attention.
Once you provide your initial deposit and sign the plans and contract, your cabinetry will be ordered, and the lead time will begin.
Before placing your order, all we ask for is a verbal agreement that you are moving forward with Dean Cabinetry. It might take months or a year before you place your order, and that is not a problem. We are happy to help and offer our design services as long as your commitment to us is clear.
During this step of our process, we are happy to meet with you and discuss anything budget-related. This includes your project details, scope, and budget. We are also happy to discuss any concerns you have about services and cabinetry providers.
Dean Cabinetry will do an initial design for your project and provide a budget option for each cabinetry level. We can review the design drawing in our showroom, and provide you with a 3D rendering. However, we cannot send you plans or elevations. You are welcome to take a copy as soon as you can commit to us as your service provider.
We cannot offer multiple design drawings until a commitment has been made to Dean Cabinetry. We go above and beyond for our committed clients, and therefore we need to limit our design work before we have a commitment.
Congratulations! We are super excited to move forward with you, and we will do everything we can to ensure your new kitchen is just what you’ve been dreaming it will be. You are now in the design stage. This is where our true partnership and the real fun begins.
We believe that designing a kitchen is a partnership. It is a relationship between a client, a designer, and other professionals. This space will be the essence of your home. People will gather here to cook, converse, and laugh. To truly grasp your project, our designers will work closely with you to make sure your space is beautiful, functional, and that it fits you and your family perfectly.
Design is where we dive into the finite details of your project. Your designer will review your layout in great detail, does anything need to be moved to improve movement and functionality in your kitchen? Do you prefer drawers or rollouts, do you need any cabinet accessories? Will your island be a different finish than the rest of your cabinetry?
There will be phone calls, emails, and meetings. To help make this time as productive as possible, we may set a time each week for a phone call to discuss design plans and answer any questions. It is also very productive to gather all your questions and email them to your designer weekly. It is very productive to gather all your questions and email them to your designer weekly. You will work with your designer to turn your vision into a reality.
This is also where other designers, contractors, and service providers may get involved so that we can plan your project thoroughly.
However long it needs to be. Our goal is to be as responsive as you need us to be. If you need your cabinets ordered in 2 weeks, we can make it happen. If there is no rush, that works too. As long as we have your commitment, we will be there for you.
Absolutely. It is very important that we meet to go over the design details. Your input combined with your designer’s expertise will make ideas and inspirations turn into reality.
During our first budget meeting, it is common for clients to pick a budget direction and commit to Dean Cabinetry. The meeting can then transition into a design meeting where we determine the large details of the project.
Once you are confident in Dean Cabinetry to provide your cabinetry services we will meet at the project site. This will allow the designer to get a better sense of your space. Your designer will take measurements to ensure our drawings are accurate. We can also discuss the layout and the remaining open details of your project.
Subsequent meetings could be at the project site or in our showroom depending on the decisions that need to be made. Decisions regarding measurements, size, layout, and overall aesthetic are best made on site. Decisions of cabinet style, door style, color, and other details are best made in the showroom, where samples can be viewed.
Additionally, many of these decisions can be made through email and with our learning center. Our designers are flexible and are willing to work with your needs. Some clients want to figure things out for themselves, while others would prefer to be guided through the entire process.
We want you to be an informed consumer. If you have a question, please ask. We want to answer your questions in order to help you make educated decisions. If there’s a question or concern we haven’t answered in our learning center, please let us know. We are always adding new content; if you have a question, someone else most likely has that same question.
As the client, your ideas and inspiration are most important. We will use our expertise to explain best practices and trends, but the final decisions will be yours. We will work together through the process to make all of the decisions.
There are large details that the client should be involved in. The small details can be decided by the client or left to the professional discretion of our designers.
These large details need to be decided in order to determine the overall direction of the project:
These are the large cabinetry design decisions that need to be made before the smaller details.
These are the smaller decisions that are made to capture your unique style. They should be made after the larger decisions. This will prevent resetting your design progress and will ensure your project stays on schedule.
Smaller decisions include:
Remember, it is important to consider the smaller decisions from the beginning. However, do not let them drive the design process. It is important to make the large decisions before the smaller ones. This will make the design process more straightforward and streamlined.
Dean Cabinetry offers cabinetry, design, delivery, and installation services. We can help you with countertop templating and installation as well. We are also able to remove and dispose of existing cabinetry and help with minor remodeling.
If you are in need of additional services, your designer will be able to answer some of your remodeling questions. We are also happy to refer you to other service providers. We keep an extensive list of vetted contractors by location and expertise.
There is no cost for design services. Our cabinetry design services are included with the purchase of your cabinetry. As long as you are committed to us as your service and cabinetry provider, our design services are included, free of charge.
Your designer will guide you to make informed decisions that fit your needs. Make sure to let your designer know how much input you want. If at any time, you are unhappy with their guidance, let them know, and they can easily and quickly adjust to meet your preferences.
At Dean Cabinetry we are kitchen designers. We can help with interior design recommendations, but we are not specialists. Interior designers have their own areas of expertise. Check out this article for an honest comparison, Kitchen Designer vs. Interior Designer. We can recommend interior designers as well.
Once you are confident in your selections, it is time to order your cabinetry. Your designer will prepare a final set of plans along with a service contract.
You will initial each page of the plans, sign the cabinetry contract, and installation contract, if necessary, and provide the necessary deposit.
This will progress your project into the ordering stage.
A deposit will be needed to order your cabinetry.
The deposit will be 50% of the total cabinetry and/or installation cost. The remaining 50% will be due prior to delivery.
We want to make sure that we deliver you the best possible product, the product that you expect. We ask for payment while also asking you to trust that we are going to deliver a quality product.
We understand that this may be unnerving, to pay before you have seen the final product installed. We ask you to trust us, and to trust our reputation.
Additionally, from a legal standpoint, once we deliver our product, we have little legal power to collect payment. We cannot put a construction lien on your property, because we may not yet have done work on the site. This is why we ask for payment upon delivery.
Our goal is to begin your lead time as soon as you place a deposit. However, sometimes many details are not yet finalized when our clients place their deposit. Therefore we cannot guarantee an exact lead time until all of your design details have been finalized.
Our designers complete an extensive designer’s checklist prior to ordering your cabinets. Your designer will ensure that everything is completed before ordering.
This is where your cabinetry gets made. The first step is to detail your project plans. We go through each cabinet, double-checking the measurements, as well as making notes and specifications for the manufacturer. Stock and semi-custom cabinetry is carefully ordered from our suppliers. They manufacture and deliver the cabinets to our shop. For our custom cabinetry, we specify the exact details of your project so that our shop can build exactly what you’ve ordered.
Detailing your project is incredibly important to make sure that you get exactly what you ordered. With hundreds of parts coming together, it is easy for design details to clash. For example, an appliance might not fit the cabinetry opening, or a construction element may have been overlooked. Detailing is the time when we go through every detail, to make sure that what we order will meet your expectations.
Our goal is to have every detail taken care of during the design stage. However, there may be a few details to finalize. The detailer will likely have questions for your designer who may, in turn, have questions for you. Either way, ordering should be the easiest stage for you. The majority of this time will be spent waiting for your new cabinetry to arrive.
There may be other parts of your project that need attention in order to prepare for the cabinetry. We are able to help with light remodeling work but this is not our specialty. For larger remodeling projects we are happy to recommend you to one of our preferred contractors. We work with many contractors, and we keep an updated list of the best ones by geographic location. Ask your designer if you’d like a recommendation.
The scope of your project will determine the services you need. This is an extensive list of services to show you all the possibilities. Don’t worry, you will likely not need all of these services.
|Service||Do I need it?|
|Architectural Services||If you are looking for a custom, complex, or specific design you might want to consult an architect. Structural changes will need an architect or engineer’s approval. Do I Need an Architect?|
|Interior Design||If you want the entire theme of your space to feel professional.|
|Cabinet Design||Yes, included with your cabinetry purchase from Dean Cabinetry.|
|General Contracting||If you want someone to manage your project.|
|Framing||If you will be moving/removing/adding walls or door openings.|
|Plumbing||If you will be moving/adding sinks, dishwashers, or other plumbed appliances.|
|Electrical||If you will be moving/adding appliances, lights, or outlets.|
|Flooring||If you will be changing the floor.|
|Other||There may be other remodeling work such as sheetrock, painting, etc. Many of these can be done by general contractors.|
|Cabinetry Installation||Yes, offered by Dean Cabinetry.|
|Countertop Installation||Yes, this can be managed by Dean Cabinetry|
|Appliance Installation||Yes, if you are getting new appliances.|
|Fixture Installation||Yes, this will be done by an electrician or general contractor.|
We are happy to recommend service providers to you; however, they do not work for Dean Cabinetry. These are referrals for contractors that our clients have used in the past and have been happy with their service.
More information about preparing your space will follow in the Installation section.
Lead times for cabinetry can vary. Your lead time will likely begin when you place your deposit. Stock cabinetry can be delivered the fastest, sometimes in as short as 4 weeks or sooner, and as long as 6 weeks. Semi-custom cabinetry can be 8 to 14 weeks. Custom cabinetry can range from 12 weeks plus.
*Lead times may vary.
When your cabinetry is ready for installation, your project will move to the install stage.
This is when your cabinetry is installed.
Installing cabinetry is a difficult process. The way cabinets are installed is just as important as how they are built. The installation process creates the final product of your space. This is where you will live, work, and create memories. Knowing what to expect and what to watch out for will make the process much smoother.
Please don’t take this lightly. Cabinetry is a final finish product that is very difficult to make perfect. We began preparing for the installation when we were detailing your project.
We do our very best to make sure we meet your installation expectations.
Check out this blog, How to Install Cabinets
When your cabinetry is ordered, you will receive an email from your designer, introducing you to our scheduling coordinator. The scheduling coordinator will be organizing the completion of your project.
We will put a tentative installation date on the calendar depending on your cabinet and project timeline. As this installation date approaches there are a number of things to prepare for.
The installation lead time can vary. If you have installation deadlines please let your designer know as soon as possible. Your lead time will begin when you place a deposit. From the initial deposit to the completion of your cabinetry install, these are approximate timelines:
*Lead times may vary.
When Dean Cabinetry has an accurate estimate of when your cabinets will be ready, our scheduling coordinator will reach out to schedule the delivery and installation. This is typically 3-4 weeks in advance. We will confirm the installation 2 weeks in advance and again 3 days in advance. We will deliver the cabinetry the day before installation after the remaining final payment is made.
Our installation schedule is flexible until a week before your installation. If you need to make a change within the week of the scheduled installation, we reserve the right to postpone the installation by one week.
There are a lot of variables to line up before your install to make sure that everything goes smoothly. When properly planned, the design choices, colors, and material selections will all come together in a quick and efficient manner. This is not easy, but certainly doable with proper preparation.
As the homeowner, it is your responsibility to have the following done before the installation day. The following is the ideal job site for a cabinetry installer. We are flexible and can work around certain items, but the ideal preparation will allow a timely installation and keep your project on schedule.
The following should be done before the installation:
Over the years, we’ve found that everyone can install cabinets. However, there is a big difference between installing a cabinet and installing cabinets every day. Our installers do this every day. They know the tips and tricks, the ins and outs, and have the experience to make sure your cabinetry installation goes smoothly. Our installers are carefully selected subcontractors we use again and again.
For this reason, we prefer to install your cabinetry, especially our custom cabinetry. We are committed to you, and we are committed to making sure it comes out right. When we install, we take care of all punch list items and see it through to the end.
If you’d like, you are welcome to install the cabinetry yourself or have your contractor install it. If you’d like to go in this direction, you will be responsible for the final measurements and materials list. We will do whatever we can to help, but since we will not be onsite, we will not be able to predict possible issues. In addition, Dean Cabinetry will not be able to provide the same attention to detail with punch list items.
In terms of punch list items, all of our manufacturers stand behind their products, and so do we. We are eager to help resolve any defects from the manufacturer. This will require a simple picture of the defect emailed to Dean Cabinetry. If we did not install the cabinets, the installation of punch list items will be the responsibility of the homeowner or contractor. We will take care of any punch list items that we are reasonably responsible for.
We must dedicate our attention to the installations that we are responsible for. If you are unsure about installing your cabinets, read the blog How to Install Cabinets and speak with your designer.
A punch list is a list of items that need to be adjusted or corrected. For example, if something gets damaged during delivery, it would need to be corrected, and it would become a punch list item. Another example is if a cabinet is the incorrect size, it would be added to the punch list.
Any punch-listed items will be resolved with a return punch list visit, often completed two weeks after the initial installation.
Punch list items can be the most frustrating part of your project. Dean Cabinetry prefers to install because we will take responsibility for your punch list items, and make sure they are completed in a timely manner. It is not fun to have an almost finished project.
Dean Cabinetry does not install or move appliances in your home. You will need to make arrangements with your contractor or appliance distributor to install your appliance panels.
Appliance installation is difficult. Appliances, including the sink, should be delivered to the site, but out of the cabinet installation area. Your appliance provider will provide you with installation options.
If an appliance is integrated with your cabinetry, we can pre-install them into the cabinet. For example, if you are purchasing a farm sink for your kitchen, you should have it delivered to Dean Cabinetry. We will cut the cabinet to fit the sink and deliver it with your cabinetry. Unfortunately, we are not licensed to connect the plumbing. Another example would be a hood ventilation insert. The insert would be delivered to our shop and installed in your hood. We would then deliver it to your home, and it would be connected by your appliance installer.
Demolition is typically managed by the homeowner or contractor.
If you would like Dean Cabinetry to remove and dispose of your existing cabinetry and countertop material, we can certainly help. We will remove the existing materials and dispose of them. Next, we will install the new cabinetry. If preparation work needs to be completed between the time of removal and install, it is the responsibility of the client or contractor.
The day before your installation, we will provide delivery by skilled and careful delivery personnel. Our delivery driver will call the homeowner or contractor with their ETA, 1-2 hours prior to their arrival.
One, two, or three delivery personnel will bring everything into the installation space. For “delivery only” projects, final cabinet payment is due upon delivery. We will unbox the cabinetry, and dispose of all packaging.
We expect your cabinetry install to be completed within 3 days of the start date but may take more or less time. 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 for 1 punch list visit to complete the project. The client is responsible for communicating to Dean Cabinetry any additional items that need to be completed.
If Dean Cabinetry is unable to complete the installation during the install or on the punch list visit, due to conditions created by the Homeowner and/or Contractor, we reserve the right to charge for additional visits.
Items brought to Dean Cabinetry’s attention after the punch list visit will be considered touch-up items, and will not be an immediate priority for Dean Cabinetry. Dean Cabinetry reserves the right to charge for any additional visit, including and not limited to, hardware installation (if not onsite during installation). Dean Cabinetry also reserves the right to charge for touch-up items (including, but not limited to, damage caused by other contractors on-site).
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:
Your cabinetry installation will officially be complete once all of the punch list items have been resolved and closed. The next step is for the other final finishes to be completed. There will often be settling to your cabinetry and adjustments that need to be made once you move in. We’ve written this guide to help adjust and maintain your cabinetry for years to come, A Complete Guide to Cabinet Maintenance.
Our commitment to our clients: 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.
Your relationship with Dean Cabinetry is nearly complete. Your cabinetry project is installed and you are finally able to start enjoying it!
You set out to find the best value in cabinetry. You chose Dean Cabinetry as your provider. We helped make your project become a reality and we truly hope you love the results. This is so important to us that we want to follow up with you to learn about your experience with us.
A member of our follow-up team will reach out to you to congratulate you on your project completion. We will ask if we can come for a visit. If you are willing, we will set a date, and meet at your newly completed project location.
It will be our pleasure to bring an appreciation gift as well as ask about your experience with us.
Our questions include:
We may also bring another member of our team to see the completed project. This is greatly appreciated by our team members who don’t often get to see the end results.
With your permission, your photos will be added to our website and our social media platforms to help future clients see what is possible for their kitchen. We may also use your review to help clients understand the products and services they can expect by choosing Dean Cabinetry.
We cherish our clients who are willing to give our team, product, and process compliments as well as constructive criticism. This helps us to improve, grow, and continue our mission.
Our mission is to be Your Kitchen Cabinet Partners from Start to Finish, through best value & service, creating results our clients love while guaranteeing health & well-being for our employees.
We hope you love your cabinetry, and that you enjoyed partnering with us as much as we enjoyed collaborating with you. Also, we hope that you will happily spread the word about our mission. We look forward to catching up in the near future. Feel free to call, email, or stop in to let us know how you are enjoying your Dean Cabinetry. We would love to hear from you! Cheers!