How Much Does Cabinet Refinishing Cost?

Closeup of Woman Holding Paint Brush and Painting Kitchen Cabinets

How Much Does Cabinet Refinishing Cost?

How much does cabinet refinishing cost? Here’s what you can expect price-wise when it comes to refinishing your cabinets.

If you’d like to give your cabinets a face-lift without having them replaced, you’ve got options that don’t involve a tear-out. Refinishing your cabinets is one of them. The cabinet refinishing cost is much lower than a complete remodel.

During the cabinet refinishing process, all old paint, stain, and varnish are removed and the newly exposed bare wood is repaired and refinished. It’s a cost-effective repair that gives new life to an existing structure.

Your cabinets might be good candidates for refinishing. Read on to learn more about cabinet refinishing cost and the process itself.

What is the Process of Cabinet Refinishing?

Refinishing usually involves stripping the existing finish off the surface of your old cabinets. This can be a messy, time consuming task that we like to avoid at Rise Painting. We have options to refinish right over your existing finish! The coatings we apply are durable, factory grade finishes that look amazing and save a ton of time and money.

During the process, the faces of the cabinets and any hardware are removed so that the new finish covers as much of the surface as possible.

Any nicks, dents, scratches, or other damage is then repaired. The surface is then prepared for a new finish.

After repairs and preparation, the cabinets are repainted or stained. When they’re repainted, a primer and then paint are generally used.

With staining, the wood may be sealed, sanded again, and then stained. After the final stain, a varnish or lacquer is then applied.

Easier on the Pocketbook

Refinishing is great choice on a tight budget. It costs far less than other cabinet repairs and replacements because there’s no change to the actual structure of the cabinet boxes or doors.

You can choose an entirely new color of paint or stain for your cabinets. This transforms the look of your kitchen without draining your bank account.

Though it’s a fairly straightforward process, a professional painter will be able to do the best job from start to finish. They’ll be able to thoroughly remove the old finish, fix damage correctly, and apply the new finish properly.

When Should Cabinet Refinishing Be Avoided?

If your cabinets are very old, have structural damage, or were poorly installed in the first place, a replacement may be a better choice than a refinish.

Refinishing can’t cover issues in the actual placement, shape, and stability of your cabinetry.

Different Factors Affect Cabinet Refinishing Cost

If you’re considering refinishing your cabinets, there will be several factors that will affect the final cost of the job.

A professional can assess cabinet condition and can usually give you a price estimate based on the job size, job complexity, cost per hour, and cost of preferred refinishing materials.

Size and Number of Cabinets

The size and number of cabinets you’ll be refinishing will be an important factor when cost is determined.

Larger areas with more cabinets will naturally cost more. The actual size of the cabinets is relevant as well since more cabinets or those with larger surface areas will take longer to refinish.

You can save some money, however, by choosing to paint all of the cabinets with the same type of new finish. You’ll generally be charged more if several cabinets will receive a different finish.

If you have an island or another feature that can be accentuated, an inexpensive option that can drastically improve the look and feel of your kitchen is to refinish those accent pieces alone.

Complexity of the Refinishing Job

The design and style of some cabinetry are more intricate than others. This will affect the cost, as more detailed or difficult to paint styles will require more time and possibly more materials.

Other cabinetry is less complicated to refinish, so the cabinet refinishing cost will most likely be lower. This is especially the case for cabinets with a smooth front.

Preparation Time

Preparation involves quite a few steps, so it’s not always a quick process.

We decide our prep steps based on the current condition and material of your cabinets. Depending on what we find, any previous coats of paint, varnish, or stain may need to be stripped off of the cabinets. Surface imperfections and damage will need to be repaired next. This includes any splintered or broken wood, dents, scratches, and gouges.

Surface Preparation

After damage repair, the entire surface must then be sanded until it’s very smooth and clean. All of this surface preparation ensures that the new finish will adhere to or absorb correctly when applied.


Protecting surroundings and prepping kitchen surfaces for cabinet painting

Kitchen Cabinets Being Prepared for Refinishing

Failing to properly prepare a surface can be problematic. A few issues that can arise from improper surface preparation are:

  • An uneven or bumpy look to the newly applied finish
  • A finish that peels off quickly
  • A new color that will not look right over areas where the old color comes through

If your cabinets have more extensive damage, the preparation time may take longer and cost a bit extra. It’s worth the investment of time and money to get a clean, even surface for your new finish.

Refinishing Materials

There are many refinishing materials to choose from when you’re refreshing your cabinetry.

You’ll be able to choose from:

  • Many colors of paint
  • Paint sheen, such as flat, matte, eggshell, satin, and gloss
  • Different types of paint, such as oil or latex
  • Different types and colors of stains
  • Different varnishes

All of these finishes will vary in price depending on brand, finish, and color.

While most of these choices are aesthetic in nature, some involve finish quality. If you choose to save money by using less expensive refinishing materials, it’s likely the finished product will reflect this lack of quality.

Quality Is Worth the Cost

If you’re taking the time and effort to refinish your products, it’s worth investing in the best product possible for durability and visual appeal.

Higher quality finishes can generally withstand exposure to sunlight, water, and wear and tear better than lower quality ones. This is important because you’ll want your new finish to last.

The Final Cabinet Refinishing Cost

After all factors are considered and materials are chosen, you’ll have a good idea of what you’ll be paying for a cabinet refinishing. Most homeowners pay between $2,800 and $3,800 for a refinish job.

This is quite low compared to installing new cabinets, which can run between $15,000 and $45,000 on average.

It’s a money-saver you might consider if you like your cabinetry but would like a bit of an update or a change of color.

Budget Friendly and Immediately Rewarding

Refinishing cabinets can help you improve the look of your home without spending a ton of money.

In a short time, your cabinets will look updated and beautiful.


Updated Kitchen With White Painted Cabinets

If you’re interested in professional painting and refinishing surfaces, contact us today. For more information on painting services, feel free to explore our blog!