Best White and Gray RTA Cabinets in the Business

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RTA Cabinets Versus Custom: Are Custom Cabinets Worth the Extra Cost?

Having anything customized has a fancy sound, but how much of a difference does it really make when it comes to cabinets? There are several factors to consider, with quality being first and foremost. When comparing custom cabinets with ready to assemble cabinets (RTA cabinets) from well-established companies such as Nelson Cabinetry, there aren’t that many differences. First and foremost, the quality is comparable, and RTA cabinets even offer advantages that custom cabinets don’t. Read on to find out what the varying levels of customization are and also how custom cabinets stack up to the competition in terms of quality as well as convenience, sizing, and design.

Differing Levels of Customization

The term “custom” can be misleading and even somewhat confusing, so it’s useful to get into some terminologies for clarity’s sake. There are different levels of customization, from the full custom cabinet maker who will work with you on selecting the construction materials, style, sizes, and finish to cabinet makers who offer semi custom premade models and use them for your custom design. The full custom cabinet maker option is by far the priciest.


Custom vs semi custom cabinets
Custom vs semi custom cabinets


There are also large companies that feature “custom” cabinets with more limited options and styles than you’d get from a cabinetmaker, but they still carry a hefty price tag. “Semi custom” cabinets are less expensive than customized ones and are prefabricated, meaning they come in standard cabinet sizes; what distinguishes semi-custom cabinetry from stock cabinets is that specific dimensions such as the depth or the size of the drawers can be changed to fit the customers’ needs. Meanwhile, ready-to-assemble and preassembled cabinets are both prefabricated, and additions such as fillers are used to ensure the right fit.


Now that you know what types of customization are available, it’s important to emphasize that a higher level of customization does not always mean a higher level of quality! Some semi-custom cabinets have cabinet boxes made of less robust materials such as particle board or fiberboard whereas some RTAs feature boxes made of plywood. Nelson Cabinetry is proud to feature its cabinets with plywood boxes and solid wood doors, drawer fronts and face frames. When comparing quality, it really comes down to the company rather than the category of the product itself.


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Ready-to-assemble cabinets (RTA cabinets) boast lower costs than custom cabinetry and ship conveniently in flat boxes. Prefabricated cabinets are cheaper, but they can be a hassle to ship. What’s more, the construction of custom cabinets can take weeks or even months. With prefabricated (stock) cabinets, the product is usually available immediately for shipment. The advantage of RTA cabinets over preassembled ones in terms of shipping is that costs are generally less since the shipments are made in flat boxes. For custom cabinets, there is no shipping since the cabinets are installed right in your kitchen or bathroom, but there’s the added hassle of working around the installation which, like the manufacturing stage for custom cabinets, can also be a lengthy and drawn-out process.


Nelson Cabinetry White Shaker Kitchen Collection Straight Wall with Spice Rack
Nelson Cabinetry White Shaker Kitchen Collection Straight Wall with Spice Rack


Sizing and Design

One of the greatest advantages of custom sized cabinets used to be that you work with a specialized professional who can work with you to determine what will work best with your space. This is especially useful if your kitchen or bathroom has unusual dimensions and it’s not immediately obvious what layout would work best with the visions you have of your remodel. This is a traditional approach to the process of deciding on new cabinets but fast-forward to the twenty-first century when we at Nelson Cabinetry can offer our customers a free online kitchen design tool and expert consultation. This makes it possible for buyers to choose from the range of sizes available for the kitchen or bathroom. Nelson also offers cabinet filler pieces in three different heights to ensure the ideal fit.


Nelson Cabinetry Free 3D Kitchen Design
Nelson Cabinetry Free 3D Kitchen Design


For a project as substantial as a kitchen remodel, it’s always a good idea to get expert advice. While most consumers have limited experience with kitchen remodels, the experts know all the ins and outs of the industry and can give you some great tips, whether you have questions about design, cost, or quality.


If you’re considering kitchen cabinets, we highly recommend that you give us a call or visit our website to learn more about the products and services we offer.



Content Summary:

•There are varying levels of customization available for cabinets, from full custom to semi-custom to ready-to-assemble (RTA).
• Nelson Cabinetry’s quality of RTA cabinets is comparable to that of custom cabinets.
• RTA cabinets offer advantages in terms of convenience, affordability, and free design consultation.

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Nelson Cabinetry

Nelson Cabinetry is an online distributor of high quality kitchen and bathroom cabinetry. We pride ourselves in delivering a high quality product via an easy to use, convenient website. Placing your cabinet order has never been easier and you can do so from the comfort of your home, office or job site.


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