Howdens Kitchens - are they any good?

(32 Posts)
extremelychocolateymilkroll Wed 23-Feb-11 23:32:52

We are having a new kitchen and were looking at getting one from John Lewis but our builder is recommending Howdens as he says the quality is better which surprised me. Does anyone have experience of Howdens? TIA

pinkcushion Thu 24-Feb-11 08:45:08

I really doubt the quality is better - they might be cheaper though. Or your builder may make some extra cash from selling them to you.

My friend has one and it is lovely. Sorry, can't compare it to JL though, no experience there

EdgarAleNPie Thu 24-Feb-11 08:56:21

MIl is having a howdens kitchen. we compared the price to a near-identical kitchen from Wickes, and it was much cheaper even paying the builder his mark up and even with the promotion wickes were running at the time.

Howdens units arrive made up too, saving a bit of time on the install.

as it isn't finished yet, can't comment on quality.

thx1138 Thu 24-Feb-11 08:59:43

I don't know about John Lewis but I have a Howdens kitchen and the quality of the doors and carcasses was noticeably better than the other mid-range places we looked at (Ikea, MFI, B&Q etc). Why don't you go down to Howdens and have a look with your builder. Howdens supplies the trade so maybe your builder will get a better price which he could pass on to you. We got a fantastic solid oak work top from Howdens - cost much less and was of much better quality than the other places.

notapizzaeater Thu 24-Feb-11 09:01:07

I have a Howdens one in wood and its been fab - 2 years old now and still looks pristine. No issues with draws etc

TheChewyToffeeMum Thu 24-Feb-11 09:02:52

My parents have one - looks lovely, feels good quality. But... 3 door hinges have broken in the 2 years since it was fitted.

CeliaFate Thu 24-Feb-11 19:52:23

I've got Howden units in the utility room. They look great and have had no problems.

mcfee Thu 24-Feb-11 20:06:48

I have a Howdens kitchen. Got it 2.5yrs ago still looks brand new. Can't compare it to JL but quality is absolutely fine.

JojoLapin Thu 24-Feb-11 21:44:28

I have one too, mine is 8 years old and still looks like new. V good quality.

bacon Thu 24-Feb-11 22:42:17

Howdens, magnet etc etc all the same and I'm not a fan, good for short term as in investment for selling but look tired after a while. I see them as a short term investment while a more expensive will look sharper and will last. But budget is budget. It depends something that is made of a better quality materials will cost more, you dont get something for nothing.

You'll prob find John Lewis are using another company - just rebranding. Could be a good quality company - lots of companies use Second Nature.

I wouldnt get taken in by these so called sales either - no one can offer 50% off unless the product is worth 50% less than RRP. Builders get excellent rates at Howdens thats why they offer them - some get amazing deals too - prob gets club points!!!! I deal with a lot of builders who always say the xyz product is better but they are going by price not quality.

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Thu 24-Feb-11 22:45:06

Bacon who would you recommend for kitchens then? I've just chosen (not ordered) a Howdens one. My last one was OK for 6 years and it was a low budget one - Magnet, Wickes or similar.

NB: my friend's IKEA one is showing wear and tear after 3 weeks!

thefirstMrsDeVere Thu 24-Feb-11 22:47:34

I have a howdens. They do tend to operate in a no frills way which appeals to builders. Mine is great. It gets a lot of bashing and I havent had any problems with it at all.

We have had our Howdens kitchen for 5 months. So far so good. It all feels solid, it all arrived ready assembled so dh and I had a good fiddle with the units before they were fitted - all felt solid and did not flex or bow.

Our builder is a family friend of a close friend. He passed all his discounts on to us (got us to settle the account straight with Howdens so we saw all the discounts on the bill) and thus we got a hell of a deal.
And we love our kitchen. It is fab smile

saltyseadog Thu 24-Feb-11 22:55:36

We had a Howdens kitchen in our last property. Very good quality for the price.

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Thu 24-Feb-11 23:03:23

Am I permitted to ask what style you all have? grin

I'm considering Hamilton - shaker style in matt white.

extremelychocolateymilkroll Thu 24-Feb-11 23:23:39

Thanks very much for all of your responses. I think we need to get down and have a look at some of the units.

brookeslay Mon 28-Feb-11 16:55:07

I have had mine for 6 years it is pristine cream and is perfect even being attacked by toddlers !

no1KITCHEN Thu 17-Jan-13 00:02:41

Hi there all,
My builder suggested me to get a kitchen from Howdens as they are good in quality and reasonably priced. The sales person was very friendly and helpful on the phone and booked my appointment to plan my kitchen as I already had exact measurements. So I went to their Islington brunch to see their kitchen range, I have already picked a style through their website before the appointment. I thought it would be an hour or two to plan, choose, get costing etc..
Unfortunately I could not even see a designer as promised, or sit down and have my kitchen planned! I had the exact measurements, already decided on units and style prior to our appointment. I have been told the designer was busy but they could work from the plans I had from IKEA previously. He opened an account in my name as my builder was away, which was very kind... Couple of days later I had the estimate but still no plans and no visuals, plus worktops and few things we have discussed was missing! so I requested to see the visual and re-estimate and a day later pdf document has been sent but it was just put it together so very quickly and things were wrong and not how I would have plan it.

I have phoned the sales person and suggest him make another appointment with me, and with a designer and draw a proper visual and add or take out things/units etc to keep it in the budget and taste, and plan it more accurately as buying and installing a kitchen is not cheap so needs to be right. He was still suggesting me to do it over the phone or emailsmile

Buying kitchen via emails -backwards and forwards- is not the proper way to shop especially when I am willing to purchase kitchen units and appliances that cost not cheap. Don't they have in-house designers already, why it's so difficult to get things planned and visualised?

Caffeineismydrug Thu 17-Jan-13 08:59:51

I've just had a Howdens kitchen fitted and would recommend. The designer came out before the work started (was an extension), took measurements and requirements etc. He quickly came back with a design, we went back and forward a few times by email, me making changes and him updating the design. They did some great visuals which really helped as I'm rubbish at visualising things! Once sorted, they dealt with the builders. Easy peasy and kitchen is good quality.

They have all the units, appliances etc in stock and if you're local branch doesn't have it, they'll order it in from another one. Means you can make changes pretty much up until it's installed. We ended up getting flooring from them too. I ordered it one day and it arrived the next.

stella1w Thu 17-Jan-13 09:15:50

My mum googled who supplies JL and found the supplier of exact same itchen who suppled it to her direct for much less.

gobbin Sat 19-Jan-13 14:30:10

My mum's had a Howdens kitchen for approx 9 yrs (similar to current Tenby range) and it has been brilliant.

We went with an independent company two yrs ago who were great, but now having issues with the supposedly good qual hinges. I wish we'd used a builder and Howdens now.

emsyj Sat 19-Jan-13 15:03:10

We've literally just fitted a Howdens kitchen and we're very happy with it. We had someone out twice to measure up and they did 3 different designs for us in the end as we kept changing our minds as the build (extension) was happening - we hadn't really any idea what the space would be like until the work was well underway and it turned out we had more room than we expected so we added more cupboards and moved some appliances around etc.

The other good thing about Howdens is you can change your mind right up to the last moment - because it's all in stock, you can ring the day before delivery and change the whole order no problem.

emsyj Sat 19-Jan-13 15:03:33

They do have showrooms also, so you can go and look properly before you order.

austenozzy Sat 19-Jan-13 15:54:20

we had a howdens kitchen put in and it's great. one thing to beware: they asked if we wanted soft close doors and drawers, and when we said yes they immediately selected the more expensive range of everything. the soft close plunger things can be clipped on after and cost pennies! may just have been the designer that came to us.

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