Brookwood cabinets from DirectBuy anyone?

rockrisleyMarch 30, 2010

Neighbor went to DirectBuy and just texted me to ask if I know anything about Brookwood or Brookline cabinets? I personally have not heard of them. Anyone know anything positive or negative? Thanks.

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Direct Buy has their own line of cabinets, and I think that's it (not certain, though, that this is their line). I don't know anything about the house brand - sorry.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2010 at 1:36PM
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Wish I could help, but they don't seem to have that brand up here in Canada. Some of our options include Cabico, KraftMaid, and KitchenCraft, none of which are DirectBuy specific. I'm surprised that they would have their own brand, isn't the idea of DirectBuy to resell other manufacturers' stuff? Apparently we're limited north of the border, as usual. ;)

BTW, we didn't end up getting our cabs from DB, we went with a semi-custom local cabinet maker who gave us more options but a better price. YMMV.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2010 at 10:49AM
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Ummm- I would NEVER, EVER, EVER, buy another thing from Direct Buy. It is a scam. DH and I joined years ago when we were first married, and quickly realized we were suckered. Glad it was years ago when the membership fees were not as high as they are now.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2010 at 11:19AM
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Not sure about that Brand. Private label cabinets kind of got started in the industry back in the 90s but never really took off. (Not that I'm aware of) I think people are more comfortable knowing the manufacturer. What happens if the dealership goes out of business and the homeowner can not find out who the manufacturer is? I just think it's kind of weird. My business does not make cabinets....why pretend that we do???

I own a K+B dealership. A few years ago, my business partner's cousin decided to build a house, so she bought a DB membership. With our builder's discount which is only 5% off, DB was higher than us for KraftMaid cabinets. She felt sick about it, thinking the cabinets was one area she could really get back the savings toward the membership cost.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2010 at 2:54PM
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did DB's higher price include the expensive membership fee , or was that on top of the cabinet price?

    Bookmark   April 2, 2010 at 7:36PM
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"Brookwood" is the brand name given by the Starmark Cabinetry Company to the cabinets sold through Direct Buy. The cabinets are exactly the same. The address for the company which sells the brand is 600 East 48th St North Sioux Falls, SD 57104. Norcraft owns Starmark and 4 other brands of cabinets. In order of quality they are Fieldstone (custom line), Starmark (semi-custom), Ultra Craft (semi custom and stock), Mid Continent (stock), and Norcraft (stock). Brookwood/Starmark are high-end cabinets and should only be compared to other non-Norcraft brands of similar quality (lifetime guarantee, 1/2 to 3/4 inch panels, veneer interiors, dovetails, soft close drawers and doors, etc). If compared on characteristics such as these DB customers will see 10-20% savings versus other cabinet makers with the same quality even with the handling and shipping. DB ONLY makes sense for those who will be buying well over 15 thousand dollars of high-end merchandise over the term of the membership. The savings are nice on the cabinets but actually better on the really high-end furniture. The things where customers will reap the most savings are not found in Home Depot or Best Buy, but Bloomingdales. They do not make this clear in the sales pitch. I have been a member for 20 years and knew all of this before entering the door. I am satisfied because I only buy high-end merchandise from DB. Otherwise I buy my goods elsewhere. If one is not going to structure one's purchase in this fashion then it makes no sense to join.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2010 at 1:30AM
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I am a Directbuy member. Recently had kitchen done, install in progress from Brookwood. DirectBuy also carries Omega, if you're a member, stick with Omega no matter how much the designers try to steer you to Brookwood. Brookwood is not customer friendly. I ordered a 5 thousand dollar custom hood, which was finished shabbily with the glaze, the hood liner they sold me didn't fit in the hood that they built!!! and had to be returned, took forever to facilitate a return at all - refused to cross-ship despite the fact that it was holding up my project for weeks, and they were at fault. The drawer bottoms are cheap, push your hand and they bend. Brookwood didn't tell my desinger the custom piece would take 2x as long as the rest of the order, and then wouldn't separate the single custom piece and ship the order partial. The hood was the last piece needed because the piers sit on the counter top - everything else including counters had to be installed first anyway, we could have been working while waiting on the hood. Delayed project another month. You will provide the model #'s of all your appliances, and they are supposed to assure they fit in the design, my microwave cabinet was not deep enough for the specified microwave. Don't do it.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 10:13AM
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I too, have found Starmark/Brookwood entirely unfriendly to the customer. We ordered 14 cabinets from them and they were awful(see the post "Starmark vs. Omega" for pictures). They replaced 11 of the cabinets and all the doors and drawers. The second set is not much better than the first. The Starmark independent marketing and sales rep tried to convince me all the defects would "blend" once in my kitchen. We have not heard from him in the almost 3 weeks since he came to look at our sub par cabinets and he does not return calls. Direct Buy is not being particularly helpful either. We bought Omega cabinets before from DB and love them. Wish we had not bought the Brookwood this time.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2011 at 10:13AM
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I know it's too late for the original poster, but I just got Brookwood kitchen cabinets from DB and they were fabulous. My builder was impressed with the quality too and estimated that based on quality I saved a good $5000-$10,000. I agree that DB should make it clear that the only way memberships make sense is if you are buying a fair amount of big ticket items, but if you are you do save $ even after the membership fee.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2011 at 7:28PM
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    Bookmark   March 26, 2011 at 12:27PM
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Put in $40,000 of brook wood cabinets, could not be happier with quality, and appearance. And I agree if you are not buying high end products Direct Buy is not for you. I have been a member for over 15 years and love them.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 3:06PM
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here are some pix of Brookwood we have done
they are the finest cabinets we carry imho
we have over 11 brands of cabinets, including semi, custom, inset and full access euro design cabinets... these are my favorite b/c they are best finish and 3/4 construction boxes... their wood spices are also top grades

these are our designs and I took the photos at the members home... also see my web site for more.

John Massaria

Here is a link that might be useful: Our Web Page

    Bookmark   June 7, 2011 at 6:33PM
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GO WITH BROOKWOOD!!! The main reason I got my Direct Buy membership was to buy cabinets and I couldn't be happier. Even my builder asked me where I got them because of the quality. The company was excellent to work with also. We were short a couple feet of crown moulding and they shipped it out the next day. Please contact me if you have any questions.


    Bookmark   August 16, 2011 at 12:04AM
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This conversation is probably long gone and over, but in case anyone is out there, i would love to hear more about their experience with Brookwood and DB.
My first experience with DB, and why i joined, was for cabinets.
I ordered the frameless ones from Ultracraft and love them and loved the xperience and LOVED the price. I was shocked at the savings. HUGE.
I'm putting cabinets into a post and beam house and have to have them customized where the posts are and therefore can't use ultracraft.
Considering Brookwood or the other ones DB offers and was hoping for some more input from you guys about your DB cabinet experience.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2012 at 8:06PM
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I know time has gone by since the first posting, but as people will keep running across this discussion through searches, I thought I would add my two cents.

We joined Direct Buy to do a gut job on our kitchen. Our showroom was in the tri-state area so, when we decided to get Brookwood cabinets, we found that, as with most showrooms, there was a kitchen designer available to work with us. We also found that the Brookwood distributor had a showroom about two hours away so we went there. For a 5% upcharge, they provided an architect to draw up plans and come to our house and measure. We also found that this is not a "private brand" cabinet but was in a showroom catering to very expensive homes. I agree with those who point out that, if you love Walmart, Direct Buy is a bad investment. If you like high-end merchandise, you will save a lot of money, especially on items with big markups such as furniture and home improvements. We more than paid for our membership with the kitchen remodel. We have another home now and are shopping for cabinets and fixtures for a bathroom romedel which will justify our annual dues.

    Bookmark   December 29, 2012 at 3:43PM
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Just happen to see these postings. Have been a Direct Buy member for years. We did a complete kitchen through DB - Brookwood Cabinets, KitchenAid appliances, floor tile, wall tile, granite, sink, faucet, (even our Mikasa dishes came from DB)... Came out beautifully and we saved a good bit of money. After selecting our cabinet style, color, etc., I actually did all the cabinet designing on-line with a Brookwood designer in Ohio because I couldn't wait the 6 weeks it would have taken me to book an appointment with one of the designers at DB. I am meticulous when it comes to doing these kinds of projects, so I was able to do all my own measuring, planning, etc. DB makes sense if you have a large project or 2. You will make back your initial fee and then some! Since signing up we now only pay $149 per year for life... There's lots we've save on since that more than covers that annual fee.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 4:36PM
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Adding a comment regarding Direct Buy. We joined and we saved a lot (whole house 4,200 square foot remodel- we purchased from DB: Crystal cabinets, Jeldwen Siteline EX wood interior/aluminum clad exterior windows and doors, IWP (Jeldwen) magahony front door system, plumbing fixtures, lighting fixtures, wood flooring, tile, stone/quartz slabs, furniture, etc.), but be warned... you will have to spend a huge (and I mean huge) amount of time figuring things out for yourself, or your contractor will have to spend a huge amount of time helping you figure it out (and measuring things like all the door and window openings, square footage for floor materials, etc.) which is a losing situation for him since he normally just has his installers/subs do this as part of their pricing. If you get it wrong- you eat the cost (which happened with a few items on our job totaling about $4K in wrong sized items ordered). And you will spend a ton, ton, ton of time scouring catalogs to determine what you need (this is after you hunt down a local retailer to go and actually look at the item you are interested in). We saved a lot but it was an exhausting experience and if you work full time, I venture to say it is too much to take on if you want your remodel done in less than eighteen months (which is what ours has taken).

The good thing about being a DB member is you don't need to be a "price taker" from your contractor or subs. They bid it and you check the DB prices and internet pricing and you instantly understand that you are getting a very good value by buying through Direct Buy. The other frustrating thing about DB is that there are many items that don't offer home delivery so you are hauling yourself to the club constantly to load up your stuff (if you don't have a truck, you are going to be frustrated because trying to get a bathtub or other big item home is a necessary evil of Direct Buys very low pricing). If you expect your contractor to do this then you are going to need to compensate him for the extra work.

P.S. If you are buying cabinets through Direct Buy... start the process very very very early (6 months before you need them because the process of designing, selecting, revising, etc. takes forever since you have to constantly make appointments with your DB cabinet designer to review things at every step). This was the single biggest delay with our remodel and I would say it cost us a full 2 months of delay because our house was framed, wired, plumbed, drywalled and ready to go 7 weeks before our cabinets were ready for delivery.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2015 at 12:41PM
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Direct Buy has changed a lot in the last year or two, closing showrooms and moving more toward the web. For example, you no longer have to take delivery of furniture and such at the showroom but have delivery to your home. Things such as home improvements vary greatly by area as wholesalers and distributors tend to be regional. When we did our kitchen in the home in New York, the wholesaler was about two hours away and, for a slight markup , sent someone to the house to take measurements. Though we started by selecting from the catalog, in the end we went to the distributor's showroom and selected the cabinetry and sat down with the planner there. On the other hand, when we moved to Tennessee and remodeled a bathroom we chose from the showroom display and worked with the designer in the showroom, which has since closed. There is still a showroom about an extra 45 minute drive should we need it, but DB has gone much more to on line ordering.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2015 at 2:10PM
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They went bankrupt and shut their doors here in Memphis.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2015 at 2:36PM
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They were franchises. Our location in NY closed several years ago. Chattanooga closed a few years back and Knoxville, which had been taken over by corporate for a few years, closed fairly recently. The only location in Tennessee is Nashville area. In looking at their map, they seem to be only in major metropolitan areas now. Don't forget, the showrooms were mostly for the purpose of selling memberships. I assume that part of the business got soft and, if you can't sell memberships, there's no income to pay the overhead.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2015 at 3:07PM
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Thanks for sharing that Direct Buy went Bankrupt and was a Franchise operation.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2015 at 12:50AM
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To be far as I can see Direct Buy is still ongoing. Individual franchise(s) have gone bankrupt.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2015 at 1:13AM
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