kitchen cabinet: wrong size, but already installed

JulieEBMay 8, 2014

I need some advice on this issue.

My contractor had all my kitchen cabinets installed (and the crown modeling cut and installed) before he realized this morning that Pioneer sent us the wrong size upper corner cabinet. The right leg is 3 inches shorter than in my KD's drawing.

I contacted my KD and she said that she had made the error, not the cabinet company. She offered to order the correct cabinet for me, but that solution would greatly impede the work flow of the project, plus cause extra labor, new crown molding, etc. It's not clear who would shoulder those additional costs.

It looks ok as it is, and except for some minor futzing with the undercabinet lighting, it won't affect the other components of the kitchen. The main issues for me are (1) that I'm losing some storage space and (2) this isn't the cabinet that the KD and I agreed upon.

Is it reasonable to ask for some of my money back? For something else? How do you decide on the appropriate compensation (if any)?

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If it were me, since it's fine the way it is, I would just forget about it. If it isn't "fine", then I'd want it fixed. I wouldn't ask for a discount.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 1:37PM
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If she's offered to replace, that's good.

The crown molding and labor is a different story. Your installer should have caught this if he was given a layout. Granted, it'd be an easy one to miss! You should be able to reuse most of your molding, I would think. One new 8' length should cover the error. My installers look at the cabinets and check everything over to make sure they will all fit and are the right sizes before they start. Looks like your guy didn't do the math before he started.

If it were me? I'd ask them both to split the cost of the new molding. Installer should re-do the labor at his cost.

This also should have been caught at delivery. Did your GC check them off? Did anyone check off the cabinet list? Was it written correctly or incorrectly on the invoice/shipping copies? If she wrote it up wrong as well as ordering wrong, then whoever accepted cabinets did NO wrong and they are off the hook.

I would have it redone if it were me.


    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 1:45PM
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SJ wrote exactly what I was thinking.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 2:10PM
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If it looks good to you, why not request a few extra inserts or something and call it a day?

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 2:28PM
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If it looked wrong I'd definitely want it fixed. If I had something in particular I wanted stored there and that no longer fit, I'd definitely want it fixed. Otherwise I'd forget about it and not ask for it to be fixed and not ask for a discount.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 2:45PM
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I think if you want it made right that it should be made right. If it'll bug you have it fixed now. KD should make it right if it was her mistake. I'd think she should also cover the labor costs. I'm not sure what else needs to be done but I don't know how an upper could greatly impede progress. Crown should be easy enough to make right and not take too much time. I guess if electrical has to come through the cabinet. But it's not like the countertop is sitting on top of it. Make it right if you can and if it would bug you.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 2:46PM
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If you're okay with it, then there is no problem or need for a discount (she ordered wrong, so you weren't charged more). If you want what you ordered, then let the KD determine how they will absorb the costs of a redo (ask if they plan to foot the bill and do this in writing). It should cost you no more to receive what you ordered. Get what you want.

This post was edited by snookums2 on Thu, May 8, 14 at 15:36

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 2:47PM
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I would ask for the cost difference between the cabinet paid for and the cabinet received in either a refund or extra shelves etc from the cabinet maker.

If you paid for the cabinets you received and you are happy and it will not look odd in the design, I would let it be.

If it will stand out and look odd but you don't want to wait for a replacement cabinet, maybe the designer could figure out something the contractor can make on the spot to add that 3" and then be faced to match. Who ends up with the bill would depend on what you paid for to start with and maybe some equal percentage by the GC, and KD

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 2:55PM
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Cabinet supplier eats the new cabinet. Installer eats the labor to redo and the extra stick of crown.

The design should have been measured off on the wall, with the cabinets that correspond to the design checked off. Even if the cabinet matches the invoice, it wouldn't match the design elevation, and NO install should occur using an incorrect cabinets. He installed it, which means he accepted the product as being correct for the job, which in fact it was not.

So, the physical redo is on him for not reading the plans close enough and just assuming that the correct corner cabinet was sent.

If you're OK with it as is, and don't want the disruption, ask the KD what another option would be for her to make up for the (acceptable to you) error. A cutlery drawer insert, or trash can lid, or other minor accessory gratis would be as good as I'd expect for something that was OK with you. The only other option would be for her to supply the correct cabinet and you go through having things removed and reinstalled.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 3:11PM
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Thanks so much to you all for your quick and sane advice. It was especially helpful to hear various viewpoints on the responsibilities of the KD vs the installer.

I decided that since it looks fine, I'm not going to sweat it. But when I told my KD That I didn't want to order a new cabinet, she offered a discount (though no specific amount) and I told her that I would be happy with that.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 4:19PM
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That sounds great.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 4:20PM
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You are a fair and reasonable person and as such, an incredibly valuable customer. I've had many like you and on behalf of your grateful KD, thanks.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 6:42PM
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I'm not in the business, but I agree with Trebuchet - you were reasonable and fair, and therefore, so was the KD. There are so many other things to "sweat"!

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 7:12PM
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