Bill and Kelly Nadeau moved into their Coburn Street home in 1994 and did some home improvement projects four years later. It wasn’t until their 30th wedding anniversary in 2013 that they decided to upgrade their kitchen cabinets.

“We decided to give ourselves an anniversary gift,” said Bill. “It was either get a new house or redo the kitchen. We chose the kitchen.”

To spark ideas, the Nadeaus looked at projects their friends and relatives had done to upgrade their own kitchen cabinets and they quizzed them on what features they liked best.

“In one house, we liked the storage area we saw under the kitchen island,” said Nadeau, who formerly operated Affordable Eyes, an eyewear shop in Auburn. “In another, we liked the design of the cabinets and drawers. We picked the best of what we saw elsewhere before we created our own design.”

One thing Nadeau knew for sure was that he wanted granite countertops for the new cabinets though he thought prices rather steep at first.

“When I looked around, it was $100 per foot with $100 per foot for installation,” said Nadeau, noting that he was forced to look for alternatives. “In time, I found a sale on granite for $45 a foot with free installation. Needless to say, I took that option.”

Nadeau said that he was able to save additional dollars by assisting the contractor in disposing of the old cabinets.

“He would take them off the wall and I would bring them outside to take away,” said Nadeau.

While Nadeau is pleased with the new cabinets he had installed, he did encounter a few delays that added almost a month to completing the project.

“We had plans to complete the project right before Thanksgiving,” said Nadeau. “Some of the final work wasn’t done until right after Christmas.”

In hindsight, he doesn’t blame the contractor for the delays.

“I discovered that it takes about two weeks to get the granite countertops customized for a project,” said Nadeau. “The first countertops that we got were not cut to the size we needed. They had to be reordered and that added more waiting time to the project.”

Nadeau also experienced a delay in getting the kind of glass tile that he wanted for the wall area above the countertops. “This was another delay in getting the project done.”

Nadeau admitted that the delays were a result of having this kind of project done so close to the holiday season.

“Let’s face it. Anyway who takes on a project like this in November wants to have the work done in time for the upcoming holiday,” said Nadeau. “Even the contractor admitted that this time of year is difficult to get products on a timely basis due to the high demand before the holiday.”

When asked to give advice for others tackling similar projects, Nadeau advised that people think carefully about the features they want to have in their kitchen cabinets.

“Look around and see what is available. Take your time shopping, observe what other people have and ask questions,” said Nadeau, who also advised using contractors that you know and trust.

“For this kind of project, I’d also recommend not trying to have it done so close to the holidays,” added Nadeau. “It simply was not the best time of year to put pressure on getting the product you want and getting the project done by the time the holidays roll in.”

Bill and Kelly Nadeau moved into their Coburn Street home in 1994 and did some home improvement projects four years later. It wasn’t until their 30th wedding anniversary in 2013 that they decided to upgrade their kitchen cabinets.

“We decided to give ourselves an anniversary gift,” said Bill. “It was either get a new house or redo the kitchen. We chose the kitchen.”

To spark ideas, the Nadeaus looked at projects their friends and relatives had done to upgrade their own kitchen cabinets and they quizzed them on what features they liked best.

“In one house, we liked the storage area we saw under the kitchen island,” said Nadeau, who formerly operated Affordable Eyes, an eyewear shop in Auburn. “In another, we liked the design of the cabinets and drawers. We picked the best of what we saw elsewhere before we created our own design.”

One thing Nadeau knew for sure was that he wanted granite countertops for the new cabinets though he thought prices rather steep at first.

“When I looked around, it was $100 per foot with $100 per foot for installation,” said Nadeau, noting that he was forced to look for alternatives. “In time, I found a sale on granite for $45 a foot with free installation. Needless to say, I took that option.”

Nadeau said that he was able to save additional dollars by assisting the contractor in disposing of the old cabinets.

“He would take them off the wall and I would bring them outside to take away,” said Nadeau.

While Nadeau is pleased with the new cabinets he had installed, he did encounter a few delays that added almost a month to completing the project.

“We had plans to complete the project right before Thanksgiving,” said Nadeau. “Some of the final work wasn’t done until right after Christmas.”

In hindsight, he doesn’t blame the contractor for the delays.

“I discovered that it takes about two weeks to get the granite countertops customized for a project,” said Nadeau. “The first countertops that we got were not cut to the size we needed. They had to be reordered and that added more waiting time to the project.”

Nadeau also experienced a delay in getting the kind of glass tile that he wanted for the wall area above the countertops. “This was another delay in getting the project done.”

Nadeau admitted that the delays were a result of having this kind of project done so close to the holiday season.

“Let’s face it. Anyway who takes on a project like this in November wants to have the work done in time for the upcoming holiday,” said Nadeau. “Even the contractor admitted that this time of year is difficult to get products on a timely basis due to the high demand before the holiday.”

When asked to give advice for others tackling similar projects, Nadeau advised that people think carefully about the features they want to have in their kitchen cabinets.

“Look around and see what is available. Take your time shopping, observe what other people have and ask questions,” said Nadeau, who also advised using contractors that you know and trust.

“For this kind of project, I’d also recommend not trying to have it done so close to the holidays,” added Nadeau. “It simply was not the best time of year to put pressure on getting the product you want and getting the project done by the time the holidays roll in.”


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.