Viewing 38 posts - 1 through 38 (of 38 total)
  • New kitchen – where from?
  • rascal
    Member

    Been toying with the idea of revamping the kitchen for a while, whether it’s a full rip out and start again or new doors, sink, worktops, floor etc I’m not sure yet. We got units from B&Q when it was last done but Wren are on the scene now…worth getting a free layout design done just to see how it can be reconfigured. Any recommendations?

    Premier Icon MartynS
    Subscriber

    Howdens.

    units come semi assembled. Makes fitting quicker/cheaper.
    really happy with ours!

    Premier Icon jam bo
    Subscriber

    Ikea, with deeper worktops from worktop express so you can route the services behind.

    Premier Icon martinhutch
    Subscriber

    Ikea.

    Seen a lot of bad reviews of Wren’s customer service.

    Check out diy kitchens. Very happy with the one we bought a month ago. Excellent reviews online and good price

    nickjb
    Member

    I don’t think I could be bothered with dealing with howdens pricing and made up discounts. IKEA are good; well made, well priced and a decent warranty. Also easy to change bits and get spares. That said if the current kitchen is in a reasonable state then I’d try and reuse as much as you can. Cheaper and more sustainable. That might limit your options to get matching new parts. Luckily our old kitchen was IKEA so it was easy to get new parts to fit and refresh. I think I reused most of the carcasses, either in the new kitchen or the utility room.

    jimmyoto
    Member

    We used diy-kitchens.com
    Everything comes fully assembled and the price is unbelievable and quality spot on. Basically you take responsibility for the design etc but they have plenty of advisors and pc’s around the showroom to help with layouts and ideas.
    The only (potential) downside is that their showroom is in Doncaster and you’ll most likely want to visit at least once before ordering.

    trail_rat
    Member

    We went with wren – on recommendation of our fitter……also my dad.

    They are also pre built.

    Howdens not what they used to be the rest have caught up. My dad fitted them solely for years.

    Will update. You when it arrives and we can see how their customer service is

    Premier Icon fatbikedog
    Subscriber

    Most of the well known names are sold by people who have know little about the product or kitchen design. They are very good behind a desk with a mouse. Try and find a good independant fitter. He will help with the design and advise you on where to go to buy. The quality of the your buying/fitting experience will vary largely depending on the fitter and the individual who sells you the kitchen. Wren kitchens although reasonable quality have zero after sales service. Other makes vary. As has been said Howdens have been left behind quality wise. DIY kitchens always get good reviews for quality and service.
    Having a new kitchen fitted is a major upheaval so bear in mind that price is not the only factor. Problems do arise and you need people who who are willing and able to sort them.
    If you are in the south wales/Bristol area I can help with all this. ( Yes its a a stealth advert!)
    Good luck and do not rush into anything, especially january sales.

    Premier Icon Rusty Spanner
    Subscriber

    We went with Wren.

    Great kitchen.
    Ordering and design process completely painless.

    Fitters were chimps.

    We got ours from Wren too and I never had to use customer services because it was all correct and present when it was delivered. Fitted it myself and to be fair we’re very happy happy with it. It was also a couple of grand cheaper than Howdens cheapest price even though I had an account with them. The kitchen designer at Wren also came up with a much more practical design.

    MY builder just fitted a kitchen last week – following recommendations on here I went with DIY-Kichens and Worktops Express – and used a local supplier for appliances. oh, i got handles from ikea too.

    For the money, the builder was impressed with the kitchen units – materials are decent, back panels aren’t the cheapest crap going, and full Blum hinges (soft close, £5 per door etc). I think it looks nice too! I didn’t go to the showroom, tho it wouldn’t have been the worst idea – I’ve recommended my slightly more fussy neighbours pop up (also doing their kitchen v soon). I just went for a simple shaker style.

    Units come fully assembled, tho my builder said he’d have preferred doors off. he was impressed with the units feet – apparently made everything nice and easy. make sure you have decent lorry access… cars were blocking my cul de sac entrance, so i/we had to carry everything 40m from lorry to house.

    i designed the kitchen with thei printable grid and cut-out units – in retrospect there were a couple of areas which could have been done a little better, but it’s worked out fine. apparently if you get wren etc to come along to quote, they can use a wren etc quote/design to give you theirs – this would probably be better than doing what i did!

    worktops express were good – fairly well priced. i went to see them in quedgley, and they talked me through the options. i went pre-oiled oak, tho i’m not sure quite how oiled it really is… again, in retrospect, i’d have gone for edges that weren’t just square as they’re quite ‘sharp’ and prone to chips i reckon – tho my builder did go round with sand paper to take the worst off.

    I just went to my local independent for appliances, spent a pleasant 90 mins with the sales woman who just sold me stuff – it cooked xmas dinner nicely, and cleaned the pans all well and good!

    I helped to move a wren kitchen and it was back breaking – the cabinets are markedly more solid / heavier than other ones I’ve seen.

    If I was buying a kitchen I’d probably go for Wren.

    qwerty
    Member

    DIY-Kichens and Worktops Express.

    Premier Icon eskay
    Subscriber

    If you have a Which membership, they have lots of info about best brands according to different criteria.

    Highest overall score was Magnet pre-assembled

    Highest customer score was IKEA

    I bought out of Magnet which was significantly cheaper than the others Wickes etc, Only bought 2 units one was pre built and one was self build (only owing to built up size (1200 x 1200 x 2400 corner larder, did take half a day to build)

    eruptron
    Member

    After buying a new house from Applethwaite homes and being sh1t on from a great height regarding the kitchen it’s quality and the hideous ability of the idiots that fit it.
    We felt we had little choice and either have to live with a load of cr4p or replace it ourselves. a long a depressing saga not nice to have to spend thousands of pound to rectify muppettry after only 5 months in a brand new house:-( The fu@!wits couldn’t even fit the feet on the base units in the right place that’s how useless they were.
    Anyway we went and replaced the sh!t with a very decent kitchen set from DIY kitchen.
    After reading the reviews on here.
    Their units come prebuilt so you just slot them in. we’re really pleased with the quality and the after service we received.
    The showroom is well worth a visit. Loads of stuff set up and a large room to help you plan.
    Currently they have 10% off.
    Free cake and coffee as well.
    I’ve also learnt I can fit large sections of a new kitchen better then Barry chuckle and his dips*!ts.

    schrickvr6
    Member

    Have seen some Wren horror stories first hand. We’ve had two IKEA kitchens and wouldn’t go for anything else next time. As said above use a deeper worktop and mount the cabinets on a 3×2″ onto the wall.

    Premier Icon captain_bastard
    Subscriber

    Another vote for DIY Kitchens, really impressed with mine, units ready built and really solid. 6 years down the line and it’s still rock solid.

    Get to work in other peoples houses a fair bit, amazed at how rubbish a lot of kitchens are, even when people are spending big money.

    Premier Icon chickenman
    Subscriber

    As a fitter I’d say the new IKEA range is slightly less badly thought through than the old stuff. Would find the unit sizes increasing is 200mm integers too limiting in many fitting applications to bother with them too. From a fitting point of view the one big plus of Howdens is that most of the stuff is in stock at their branches. DIY Kitchens quality is good though stuff can arrive damaged.

    We’ve just got a new house, where the builder specified that the kitchen come from BenchMarx. It was our choice, in the units and design we wanted. We were given a price we could spend and any excess was to be made up by us.
    What we ended up with was great, we really like it, we spent half of the money on a Corian work top, but that itself makes the kitchen.
    It was fitted by the builder, and to be honest we are very happy with what we’ve got. I don’t know where BenchMarx come in the scale of pricing, I suspect they are at the cheaper end, but the units appear well constructed, and six months in we have no issues.

    Another vote for DIY Kitchens here, fitted mine a year ago, we have the Matt painted finish, in a handless design, and I’ve been really impressed with the durability and the look, I like the fact our units are colour matched Internally to the doors as well. We tend to look after our stuff, but it still has to cope with a sometimes clumsy 10 year old and a dog!
    See a lot of kitchens being fitted in houses I work in, and the quality of most is not brilliant for the money, nor is the customer service/workmanship. As has been said above, a top kitchen fitter will make any kitchen look it’s best, and a bad one can make the most expensive units look average.

    vickypea
    Member

    We bought our kitchen from Howdens (fitted by Mr Pea) and were really pleased with it, including the delivery.

    Premier Icon spennyy
    Subscriber

    Have a Google of wren customer surveys/satisfaction etc there a more than a handful of horror stories. Got ours from DIY kitchens and had 0 issues. Worktops were done by a different company

    jim25
    Member

    I’m a carpenter by trade, we fit many kitchens throughout the year in conjunction generally with full house renovations.
    My personal opinion is to find a decent local carpenter that you are happy to have in your house for possibly 2 weeks, obviously depending on the size and scope of the kitchen fit.
    Then, they will recommend who they would suggest to use as a supplier, all fitters will have there own preference.

    A cheap well fitted kitchen is better than an expensive kitchen fitted badly.
    Ive seen and put right many atrocities over the years!

    My preference is to use Howdens, they have good stock of most items and for me will sort out problems immediately if they crop up… And they will..! Even with the best will in the world, you’ll uncover something that will need adapting along the way, be it hidden pipework, damaged floors or walls or change of unit sizes to accommodate different ideas as the build goes along

    I’m Hertfordshire based if you’d like some more local info if in the area.

    trail_rat
    Member

    Have a Google of wren customer surveys/satisfaction etc there a more than a handful of horror stories

    I did. what it did was make for certain sure I didn’t use their lowest price wins the job fitting service.

    Ikea, with deeper worktops from worktop express so you can route the services behind.

    We did exactly this. Fitter moaned a bit about the “quality”, in reality I just think he couldn’t be arsed with building them, even though he was paid for it!
    We got a pantry cupboard fitted with Howdens, quality was crap compared to the IKEA stuff and the pricing did my but in.

    Premier Icon jam bo
    Subscriber

    Ikea quality seems ok to me but I’m no professional. Hardware is all OEM Blum.

    Olly
    Member

    Where are you?

    We got quotes at around £8k from al!l the usual suspects, for chipboard carcases and laminate doors.
    Got a carpenter to do us the same in birch plywood carcasses and solid ash faces and drawers for 9k
    All custom, to maximise space, so no dead space. Its lovely.

    Premier Icon thegreatape
    Subscriber

    My mate who does loads of kitchens warned me off IKEA saying “joiners don’t rate them”.

    On further questioning it turned out what he meant was “the quality is good but joiners don’t like it that they’re assembled differently because they have to stop and read the instructions”.

    As above, DIY Kitchens and Worktop Express. Ours has been in 2 years now and looks like new despite the kids’ determination to use the kickplates as a boundary wall for Matchbox Demolition Derby. Price and quality are better than anything else out there. Our kitchen has even convinced my joiner father-in-law, a card carrying Howdens evangelist, to start using them instead.

    woffle
    Member

    Our builders, carpenters and plumber all have Howdens kitchens. We have had an Ikea kitchen before and it was cheap and lasted about five years before it started to look tired. The fitter wasn’t too impressed but we liked it.

    We recently did the whole Wren sales process thing – there was about a 125% increase in price between their original quotation and our final ‘approved by management’ price. At the end of the first meeting we were given a rough figure. Poor MrsWoffle then sat through their sales patter and went through all the choices and the price that came out of that was stupid – and it wasn’t like we really went to town.

    In the end we’ve just had a Harvey Jones kitchen fitted. The kitchen itself is ace. The company and their sales/project management are really not ace. It came in only 12% more expensive than the Wren price on a like-for-like on design, appliances, worktops etc. If we ever have to do it again (god forbid), it’ll be using our own joiner / carpenter and sourcing everything ourselves….

    I’m a kitchen fitter and my own cabinets are Howdens. With everything else sourced from elsewhere.

    I don’t rate Ikea kitchens at all, all I have seen look poor quality to me. Wickes are pretty good quality but no idea on pricing.

    I tried to start using DIY Kitchens on supply and fit jobs, took ages to go through their site to select everything and I didn’t find their pricing very good compared to my Howdens account plus I can have no delays with Howdens as I pick things up off the shelf if there’s any problems.

    I usually fit Howdens for my own jobs but also fit Hacker, Leicht, Keller and Mearways for a design company I contract for and they are all excellent if expensive.

    Premier Icon lapierrelady
    Subscriber

    Neptune? It’s pricey but lovely. Just wish we didn’t move out 2 years after fitting! Also, a lot of handles I looked at were awful (including the Neptune ones). I sourced some from Anthropologie that looked amazing and cost less than those quoted for.

    We went with Naked Kitchens in the end.

    Redhill kitchen

    Premier Icon FuzzyWuzzy
    Subscriber

    we have the Matt painted finish

    Is that a pain to keep looking clean? Thinking about it for when I get around to doing my kitchen but worried if it’s anything like matt paint on a bike it will be a fingerprint magnet

    FWIW, i just checked, and my ‘pre-oiled’ oak worktop from Worktops Express only has the pre-oiling done, rather than it being fully oiled and ready to go…

    might seem obvious to many, but to those of us who’ve never bought a kitchen, it came as a surprise, and 2 weeks after fitting and use, it’s just had its first coating of proper oil.

    arse.

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