Realty Executives Arizona Territory

Krista Brayer

Krista Brayer


Realty Executives Arizona Territory


Should you tile under your kitchen cabinets?

(Published on - 9/26/2022 3:23:49 PM)

What makes more sense...... tiling a room before adding cabinets or after the cabinets are installed?  


I am asked this question frequently and my response is with the following question..... Are you replacing your current kitchen cabinets or are you keeping them?  


If you are keeping your existing cabinets, it is a huge undertaking to remove your cabinets, counters, appliances and then replace them once the new tile is in.  This would be costly and time consuming.  Not to mention the potential of damage to cabinets and counters.  


If you are replacing your cabinets, then I recommend placing your tile first.  There are several reasons for this decision.  If you place your cabinets first, your tile installers will have more cuts and this means higher labor costs.  Even though you will need additional tile, usually the cost of the tile is less than the labor of cuts. 


Here's a quick example.  If you have a 12 x 12 kitchen with cabinets on 2 sides,  you will need approximatley 65 feet of additional tile.  If you are paying $4 a foot for tile, this is $260.  Chances are the labor for the additional cuts will outweight the cost of materials.  


Also, if you have a water leak, concrete is more pourous then sealed and grouted tile.  In addition, if you need to replace cabinets down the line, you will not need to worry about cabinet size, floor trim or toe kick dimensions.  


Tiling before cabinets holds true for bathrooms as well.  Many new stand alone vanities do not have a base.  Tiling under the bathroom cabinet allows for flexibility in the future.  


When I show properties that may need some upgrades, or what I call "a little loving", I'm quick to point out they will need to be mindful of flooring changes, and the additional costs for the remodel budget.


To Tile or not to Tile, that is the question :)






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