Comparing Ready-to-Assemble (RTA) vs. Pre-Assembled Kitchen Cabinets

Kitchen cabinets | ARMOIRES EN GROS

When renovating a kitchen, one of the key decisions you’ll face is choosing between ready-to-assemble (RTA) and pre-assembled kitchen cabinets. Each option offers distinct advantages and considerations, making it important to weigh these factors carefully to find the best fit for your project, budget, and preferences. Here’s a comparative look at RTA vs. pre-assembled kitchen cabinets to help you make an informed decision.

Ready-to-Assemble (RTA) Kitchen Cabinets


  1. Cost-Effective: Generally, RTA cabinets are more affordable than their pre-assembled counterparts, making them a great choice for budget-conscious renovators.
  2. Shipping Efficiency: Because they’re flat-packed, RTA cabinets often have lower shipping costs. Their compact packaging also reduces the risk of damage during transit.
  3. Customization and Flexibility: With RTA cabinets, you have the flexibility to modify or customize pieces during assembly, offering a bit more control over the final look.
  4. Storage and Space: If your project is phased, RTA cabinets can be stored more easily until you’re ready for installation.


  1. Time and Skill Required for Assembly: You’ll need a certain level of DIY skills to assemble these cabinets. The process can be time-consuming, depending on the complexity and quantity of cabinets.
  2. Quality Variability: The quality of RTA cabinets can vary widely between suppliers. Thorough research and purchasing from reputable suppliers are crucial.

Pre-Assembled Kitchen Cabinets


  1. Convenience: Pre-assembled cabinets are delivered ready for installation, saving time and eliminating assembly-related stress or errors.
  2. Quality and Durability: Often, pre-assembled cabinets are perceived to be of higher quality, as they are professionally assembled and inspected before delivery.
  3. Time-Saving: Since these cabinets are ready to install upon arrival, they can significantly reduce the timeline of your kitchen renovation project.
  4. Less Skill Required for Installation: With no assembly needed, you don’t require as much DIY skill. You’ll mainly focus on the installation process, which can still be complex but is generally more straightforward.


  1. Higher Costs: Pre-assembled cabinets are typically more expensive due to the labor and assembly process before shipment.
  2. Shipping and Handling: These cabinets are bulkier and heavier, leading to higher shipping costs. There’s also a greater risk of damage during transport.
  3. Storage Space: If your renovation project is delayed, storing these larger, fully assembled units can be more challenging.

Summing Up: RTA vs. Pre-Assembled Choices

The choice between RTA and pre-assembled kitchen cabinets depends on various factors, including budget, timeline, DIY skill level, and personal preference for customization. RTA cabinets might be the way to go if you’re looking for cost savings and have the time and ability to handle assembly. On the other hand, pre-assembled cabinets offer convenience and quality at a higher price point. Evaluate your specific needs and circumstances to make the best decision for your kitchen renovation.

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