White cabinets, a female thing?

19 Replies

So getting ready to sell a rental and had a few contractors there for various projects. And talked with all of them about the dated bleached oak cabinets, I was considering painting or refacing. Interestly all three of em didn't like painted wood cabinets. One of them was very vocal about saying he down right hated white cabinets. Watching HGTV you get the impression your property will never sell without white cabinets. Digress are white cabinets more of a female thing? 

In my market age primarily dictates what color to go with. Likely buyer 45 and under, white cabinets. Over 45, then cherry cabinets.

Haha, not sure the ROI is there on that up date. I am compiling a list of upgrades to invest in if the property does not go under contract in 2 or 3 weeks, the "White Cabinets" are near the top of the list.

I second what @Account Closed said :). In all seriousness, I think white is a very safe color for kitchen cabinets.  It’s classic and won’t go out of style as quickly as other trends. I personally do not like an oak cabinet with very prominent grain, it feels very 80s to me.  Kitchens sell homes, so make sure it looks and feels updated. Goodluck. 

The reason guys may react less positively to them may be because for years white cabinets were the cheapest things you could buy at Home Depot and the other major players.  I know that when I see them, the first thing I think of is "well they put the cheapest cabinets possible in here".  I know that's not often the case, but it's hard to get over that after seeing them be the bottom of the barrel for so long at those stores.

White has a very "clean" look to it.. *cough* so long as it's clean... the one thing I actually don't like about white cabinets is that they discolour and stain pretty easy... This is for a house you're selling... what you want is to get the biggest "wow" factor for your money.

Go white.. it's very neutral... if the buyers don't like white it's very easy to repaint.

I think it really all depends.  What kind of house do you have?  Does it have more of a traditional or contemporary feel to it?    I think that it really depends on the look you are going for and what kind of neighborhood you are in.   Painted cabinets are becoming more popular now-don't think it has to be a sterile white but a soft neutral grey could work if you have the right countertops and backsplash.  

You can really just pick up any home decorating magazine to see what is popular now and ideas that might work for your kitchen.   Do you have pictures of your rental and what countertops do you have?  Also is there a big price difference between refacing or painting?  

White cabinets are, in my opinion, not just a female thing but a one of many different styles thing :  )    And if you don't do the white cabinets the right way, they can look on the cheaper side....

But very much agree with @Steve S. that its easy to repaint if the buyer wants another look and that it looks very clean.  There is a definate wow factor with a well finished white cabinet, good countertops and backsplash, just like the picture from @Sam Shueh  Remember kitchens sell homes!!!

Thanks Kalyanii, the cabinets were left filthy by a tenant so that's another issue that favors refacing. Have not taken photos yet, been in a mad dash preparing for listing. There is a lot of variance in finish qualities in either refaced or refinished. If quality is apples to apples, price is probably not that far apart. 

Originally posted by @Aaron Taylor :

The reason guys may react less positively to them may be because for years white cabinets were the cheapest things you could buy at Home Depot and the other major players.  I know that when I see them, the first thing I think of is "well they put the cheapest cabinets possible in here".  I know that's not often the case, but it's hard to get over that after seeing them be the bottom of the barrel for so long at those stores.

 I had forgotten about those cheaper whites. I suspect it also has to do with pealing paint. 

One point about painted cabinets consider the look of the cabinet itself. Some cabinets should not be painted because it looks bad. For example cathedral style cabinet fronts painting white to me is inconsitent with the style. White is light and has broad appeal. Country look properties can handle a color like blue or cranberry but it may look wierd in other home styles. Resurfacing in a wood tone may tolerate wear better becausecit wont show as easily.

white cabinets are usually not painted, they come with that facing. The facing can get dented, scratched, etc.. And it is un-repairable. Yes it wipes down easy but I've been staying away from the cabinets with facing because they don't hold up well and you can't paint over them.

White cabinets tend to make a kitchen look brighter, bigger and cleaner. All big bonuses considering kitchens and baths sell houses. That being said, I would either go with white or I'd go with cherry. That decision is based on looking at the specific kitchen in question and taking into consideration the natural lighting, the layout, flooring and wall colors, etc etc. It's an "on site" decision.