Stock Cabinets Vs Custom Cabinets: Which Will Boost Your Kitchen’s Efficiency The Most?

Struggling to choose between stock cabinets and custom cabinets for your kitchen remodel? 

You’re not alone; this decision is a common challenge many homeowners in Overland Park face.

This article provides insight into the differences, pros, cons, and cost considerations of both options – helping you make an informed choice tailored to your needs and budget.
Ready to get started?

Blue kitchen cabinets

Key Takeaways

Stock Cabinets vs. Custom Cabinets

Stock cabinets and custom cabinets have distinct differences in terms of design, customization options, quality, materials used, and cost considerations.

Differences in design and customization options

Stock cabinets and custom cabinets greatly differ in their design options and degree of customization. Standard off-the-shelf units from Home Depot or Ikea cabinets often offer limited cabinet depth, door styles, sizes, colors, and finishes.

They are pre-manufactured based on general trends and popular market demands but might not be a perfect fit for every kitchen layout or aesthetic vision.

On the other side, custom cabinets provide unlimited design options for your kitchen remodel in Overland Park.

Every detail, from size to material type, color palette to finish can be tailored to your specific needs and tastes ensuring you get exactly what you want in terms of appearance, functionality and individuality while seamlessly blending with your home’s decor scheme.

Variations in quality and materials

Stock cabinets from big box stores typically use pre-fabricated parts, often relying on particle board or medium-density fibreboard (MDF). While these provide a cost-effective solution, they may not possess the longevity that solid wood offers.

Custom cabinets, on the other hand, are usually crafted with high-quality hardwoods such as oak, cherry, or maple which ensure durability and an aesthetic appeal unmatched by stock options.

The enhanced longevity makes them ideal for heavy-duty usage in your kitchen.

Materials choices for replacing kitchen cabinets

Cost considerations

When it comes to cost, both stock and custom cabinets have their own set of financial implications. The following table sheds light on the monetary considerations for both categories:

Stock Cabinets vs. Custom Cabinets

Stock Cabinets Custom Cabinets
Initial Price Stock cabinets are generally cheaper upfront, making them a popular choice for budget-conscious homeowners. Custom cabinets have a higher initial investment due to the added customization and quality of materials used.
Long-Term Value While being cost-effective, stock cabinets may offer less durability, leading to potential higher maintenance costs in the long run. The higher upfront cost of custom cabinets can be offset by their durability and the increased value they may add to your home.
Installation Costs Due to their pre-fabricated nature, stock cabinets can be less expensive to install. Custom cabinets often require skilled craftsmen for installation, which can increase labor costs.
Consider not only the initial investment, but also the potential long-term financial impacts when deciding between stock and custom cabinets.

Cabinet Comparison

Type Cost per Cabinet* Cost per Linear Foot* Quality
Stock / RTA Cabinets $220 - $500 $100 - $400 Low to Good
Semi-Custom Cabinets $250 - $850 $150 - $700 Low to Great
Custom Cabinets $600 - $1600 $500 - $1200 Good to Great
A large kitchen remodeling cost with white cabinets and a light green island

Factors to Consider When Choosing Between Stock and Custom Cabinets

When deciding between stock and custom cabinets, consider your budget, available space, desired level of customization, and installation timeline.

Budget constraints

Stock cabinets are generally more affordable compared to custom options, making them a popular choice for homeowners on a tight budget. Because they only come in sizes and designs, their costs are very low.

On the other hand, custom cabinets are typically more expensive due to their personalized nature.

Available space and layout requirements

One key factor to consider when choosing between stock and custom cabinets is the available space and layout requirements of your kitchen.

Stock cabinets are pre-made in standard sizes, so if you have a limited or unusual layout, they may not fit properly or maximize your storage potential.

On the other hand, custom cabinets can be designed specifically for your space, allowing for tailored solutions that make the most of every inch. Whether you have a small apartment kitchen or a spacious open-concept design, custom cabinets will fit every inch of your kitchen.

Desired level of customization

With stock cabinets, your options may be limited to pre-determined designs, sizes, and finishes.

Alternatively, custom cabinets offer a wide range of possibilities for personalization. You can choose everything from the materials used to the intricate details like hardware and trim.

Timeline for installation

Stock cabinets are typically readily available and can be purchased immediately, which means they can be installed quickly.

Custom cabinets, however, require more time as they need to be designed and built according to your specifications. This process can take several weeks or even months depending on the complexity of the design and materials used.

So if you’re working on a tight schedule, stock cabinets may be a better option for you.

Wood island with hardwood cabinets


When it comes to choosing between stock cabinets and custom cabinets, there are several factors to consider. Stock cabinets offer a more affordable option with less customization, while custom cabinets allow for personalized design and higher-quality materials.

Ultimately, the decision depends on your budget, space constraints, desired level of customization, and installation timeline.

Here at Mortise & Miter, we work with our own carpenters to build you the perfect custom cabinets that’ll match your needs, lifestyle, and kitchen. We’re a one-stop shop for your kitchen remodeling needs, and building the cabinetry is one of the things we know best!

If you’re ready to get a free quote for your kitchen remodeling project, give us a call at (913) 214-6211 or request a free quote from from this link. We’ll help you make the most of your new kitchen cabinets, custom or not!


Stock cabinets are pre-made cabinets that are mass-produced and available in standard sizes and door styles. Custom cabinets, on the other hand, are built to order based on the specific requirements of the customer.
Basically stock cabinets are the ones you buy directly from big box stores. The main difference between stock cabinets and custom cabinets is that stock cabinets come in fixed sizes and limited styles, while custom cabinets can be tailored to fit any space and can be customized in terms of design, materials, finishes, and features.
In general, stock cabinetry tends to be more affordable than custom cabinetry because it requires less labor and materials. However, prices can vary depending on factors such as quality of materials used for stock options or complexity of customization required for a custom cabinet project.
Both stock and custom cabinetry can offer good quality depending on the manufacturer or supplier chosen. Stock cabinet manufacturers often have strict quality control measures in place to ensure consistent production standards. Custom cabinet makers typically focus on using high-quality materials tailored to each individual project’s specifications. Look into semi custom cabinetry if you want a more balanced option.