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Ikea kitchen

(18 Posts)
princesschick Mon 11-Feb-13 10:47:38

I've already posted this in DIY but haven't had any joy... so thought I would try my luck over here smile

We're getting toward the end of our renovation and we're running out of cash, so we're going for an Ikea kitchen. We've used the design programme on their website and have a rough design that we're happy with but I'm aware of a couple of key areas that are not going to suit ikea out of the box solutions and will need some degree of customisation - mainly pipes on the wall, boiler and under floor heating manifold to navigate by cutting out bits of sheet material and a deeper work surface to hide the pipes and free standing washing machine.

I'm wondering if it's worth paying for one of their design team to come out to us to measure, suggest and discuss the options as we're probably going to use their installation service and plan on spending more than £2k and if so, this would be refunded anyway. So it seems like a pretty good deal to me. However, not such a great deal if we can't have their cupboards because of our awkward corners. I've heard that people pay the designer who then turns them away because of pipes on the wall etc

Has anyone used this service? Has anyone got around any awkward corners (ie leave a gap and have a deeper work surface?) I'd love to hear your experiences and any suggestions.

TIA x

SmallerClanger Mon 11-Feb-13 21:07:58

Hi, we had an IKEA kitchen fitted. We didn't use their designer, but did use their installation service. As part of this someone came out to double-check measurements and look for awkward pipes etc. Wasn't very impressed with the fitting service to be honest. Did OK job, but had assumed they would be a dedicated IKEA team, but it was contracted out, so our guy travelled over 60 miles every day to us (not even local), his mate had been injured so he was on his own, took ages, stayed late and when we needed oil for the surfaces, and hadn't got IKEA brand, he made us drive back to IKEA to buy their oil, or it wouldn't be covered in the guarantee. Would have thought he'd have a bottle, or the order would have stated to buy it. Anyway, may be worth getting a local fitter with IKEA experience to quote, more reliable and probably cheaper. BTW, we loved the kitchen! good luck.

princesschick Wed 13-Feb-13 10:48:09

Hmm.. I'm not hearing good things about these IKEA kitchen fitters. I'm glad you like your kitchen clanger but that doesn't sound like a great experience. Thanks for letting me know. I did read in the blurb that we'll need to provide oil for the work surface. We need to go back up there to pick out some other bits - we were just too tired on Monday night and couldn't think about anything else but kitchens (plus I was starving and DH wouldn't let me have the meatballs there - meat chip board as he likes to call them!!) I'll make sure we are def going back up or order some with the kitchen. It seems very inflexible that they wouldn't use another branded oil - surely they're just as good and wood is wood?!

I must admit I'm impressed with their planning service so far. We signed up on Monday night, got a call yesterday evening and have booked an appointment in for tomorrow afternoon. The guy seems really friendly, the staff in the store were helpful and we still like the kitchen we've picked out (thank god!). I'll post after the consultation tomorrow in case there are any lurkers thinking about using this service smile

Isabeller Wed 13-Feb-13 10:54:03

Quite a few years ago my Dad fitted his IKEA kitchen and it is still going strong and looking great.

Can you describe your awkward corner more? Is it one section of deeper worksurface and some boxing in?

I'm sure you've thought of getting a local fitter recommended.

princesschick Wed 13-Feb-13 11:08:53

So the awkward corner....

It is the back wall of the kitchen with the window on. The space next to the window is 51 cm wide. The boiler is on the wall in this space and takes up the space with a small space down each side. DH has suggested attaching a baton in the space between the window and boiler, and then on the next wall to attach some sort of door too.

All of the pipes for the house run down from the boiler to a manifold (for the underfloor heating) and then along the wall (not at floor level) to the supplies for the sink, washing machine and dishwasher. At this point, they run down the wall and into the floor.

The pipes come out from the wall by 8cm, so we need at least an extra 8cm to hide the pipes as they cannot be put at floor level; we cannot move the manifold which annoyingly isn't directly underneath the boiler (I thought it was and could be boxed in)

All of the other walls in the kitchen are freshly plastered and have no pipes on them. It's just the back wall as it's where we've bought all of the services into the house to.

I would send a picture, but I don't have one! I don't know if any of the above makes sense - it's a complete mess in that corner from a neat IKEA kitchen point of view. I think we'll have to have a custom worktop and bring the cupboards forward and I think DH will end up building something for the boiler / manifold issue before the IKEA people install the kitchen.

We would install the kitchen ourselves, not scared, but we've got a whole house to finish (quite a lot more to do) and DH is running out of time and steam. As our baby is on the way and it's getting a bit fraught at the in laws my parents have offered to pay to have the kitchen installed to take away the pain! Love 'em! smile I'm nervous of local fitters as I would need to start researching and feel that if we do go the IKEA route, I should have some come back if it's not right (i.e. 3 year workmanship guarantee and 25 year kitchen guarantee only valid if installed by IKEA). I'm not writing off an independent fitter but we'll see how we get on with the ones sent out from IKEA. We recently had a "cowboy" plumber and it's taken months to get someone else to come and restart finish the job and we effectively paid out double too - we didn't have any comeback as he didn't do anything "wrong" just walked off the job and charged us for his time (seemed to take a long time to do stuff compared to the new guy). I haven't got time for anything else to go wrong!

janek Wed 13-Feb-13 11:29:24

Cna i just hijack and ask if you are planning to buy and fit a kitchen for £2000 or if i've misunderstood? We wanted a new kitchen last summer and it seemed that this was impossible for less than about eight grand, no matter where we went.

I'd be really interested in how much ikea say they'll charge you, if you'd care to reportback.

Also, i know it's a slim chance, but friends of ours in nottingham would recommend their independent kitchen fitter if you're anywhere nearby...

JustCallMeFish Wed 13-Feb-13 11:34:18

We bought an ikea kitchen with new oven and hob, and sink, fitted ourselves. Cost under £1400 and our kitchen is 6ftx13ft. Lots of units.

Just have to take your time and think things through properly. Can't rush it.

Looks fab!!

Isabeller Wed 13-Feb-13 12:23:21

I want to go through your description properly later but have to go out now. You might find it worth it to join Which? and look on their Which? local website for recommendations. I trust this site and found a really good builder on it.

princesschick Wed 13-Feb-13 13:28:33

Thanks Isabeller, that's a good tip. I have a which subscription so if I need to I'll check out kitchen fitters on there.

Janek we have about £4.5k to do the kitchen (incl installation) but we already have a cooker and all the plumbing, electrics, flagstones down etc We're buying the washing machine separately, so the only appliances we'll need are dishwasher, fridge and freezer and then of course cupboards, work tops, sink

princesschick Wed 13-Feb-13 13:33:19

Oh and we're in the SE, so our local store is IKEA, I mentioned the £2k figure as once you spend over this you get a discount on the planning fee. I'll let you know how we get on :-)

We're going for the Romsjo white cupboards with cup handles and oak personalig top too btw

princesschick Wed 13-Feb-13 13:34:24

Gar! Our local IKea store is Croydon - sorry just doing this on iPad over lunch whilst talking to DH!

DorisIsWaiting Wed 13-Feb-13 13:38:54

We customised an IKEA kitchen (mum and I built the units and dad and I fitted them).

We made the tall units smaller (low ceiling height!) and adjusted where doors ran to make them in line with the 'normal' height units. We also buit a cupbaord to go around our boiler and pipes (It has ventilation on the side.) we bought a cupboard door and 2 drawer fronts and attached them together to geth the height we needed (the fronts were solid oak so be could cut them to size).and for the side of the cupboard we bought an end panel and chopped it down to size.

Rather than kitchen fitters I wonder if a local chippy would be able to do the job for you for a lot less?

princesschick Wed 13-Feb-13 15:04:20

Ok, so I sent a list of "concerns" to the kitchen planner this afternoon. I'm starting to feel much more happy about the corner of doom as he has said this:

"With regards to your worries about the pipes running around you kitchen, ideally we recommend cutting the cupboards around the pipes where possible, this is practical, quick and cheap solution."

This is exactly what I wanted to hear! The boiler / manifold issue will probably be something for DH to figure out but at least it would seem that there is some flexibility. I hope he's not leading me down the garden path and that the fitters and designers can work together! Will keep you posted smile

princesschick Wed 13-Feb-13 15:05:50

Oh and Doris, good to hear of someone customising their kitchen to fit around their space. DH is good friends with a bespoke kitchen maker (but they start at £15k and even with mates rates we still can't afford it) and has offered DH the use of his workshop if he needs it, so he could go and make some cuts there if needs be.

mackerella Wed 13-Feb-13 21:47:19

We've just had an Ikea kitchen put in (Applad white) and had to customise some areas. However, Ikea quoted us a ludicrous fee for their in-house fitters (the kitchen itself was just under £2k, but their fitting quote was £3.6k!) so we found an independent kitchen fitter instead. He was brilliant! He did moan at first about how different the kitchen was to "standard" ones (no service gap at the back of the units, the units are non-standard heights, the way the wall units are hung is different, apparently), but he was completely converted to Ikea price/quality by the end smile.

The main modifications we made were:

* Cutting down a 40cm full-height larder unit to make a 30cm one after I mismeasured a wall blush. I had to buy the interior fittings/mechanism separately because Ikea don't do a 30cm one, but the one I got is much more robust.

* Creating an 80cm corner cupboard to go in an awkward space - the standard Ikea one is 120cm, but we used a normal 80cm base unit and put a 50cm door and a 30cm blank panel on it (the bit that went into the corner - there was a void beyond it).

There were other bits and pieces but the fitter and I just did lots of problem-solving as the kitchen was being installed and it all worked out ok.

Btw, you don't have to buy everything from Ikea! We have oak worktops but bought them elsewhere because they were much cheaper for longer lengths. I used the money I'd saved on the Ikea units to buy a posh sink and floor, too, and the whole kitchen (including fitting, extensive electrical work, lots of plastering on ceiling and walls and completely new floor) was a shade under £7.

mackerella Wed 13-Feb-13 21:47:42

£7k, obviously, not £7... blush

princesschick Thu 14-Feb-13 10:33:35

£7 would be a bargain wink.

We don't have to go ahead with the Ikea fitter if we don't want to. The planner will do all of the measurements and suggestions - there's no obligation to use their fitters and if the Ikea fitters turn out to be very expensive (I'm starting to get the feeling that they will!), plus cutting holes in the back of cupboards and voiding the guarantee anyway, I'll look into independent fitters. My Dad used a guy for his offices who seemed pretty good but I'd like to check out my own on which / checkatrade as he put in a very straight forward kitchen.

We'll see where we get to with the worktops - their custom made worktops do seem expensive and can take up to 3 months to come (I don't have time for that as baby will practically be upon us and I need the kitchen way sooner!) Plus I keep seeing people saying to buy work tops from elsewhere. We're going to stick with the sink though and go for a cheap tap, with a view to replacing it down the line with something more flash.

princesschick Tue 19-Feb-13 11:24:38

Just a quick update on where we are:

- kitchen design service - good but not excellent. We've basically gone with a design that I did using their software. He tweaked a little and added in a few things I hadn't thought about. Appeared to have a very good solution to the awkward corner - that is to say - larger work top to create void at the back of the cupboard leaving space for pipes and manifold. Useful ideas about concealing boiler. However, installers have said that we can't have the sink we want in this solution as their butler sink needs to go flush to the wall. We will be working with them tomorrow to come up with a different plan of action - we may be looking at a Franke sink - not a butler sink though as these don't fit onto Ikea cupboards.

- Planner got a couple of things wrong: such as saying that all kitchen fitters are Which recommended - they're not - he got confused and has corrected this by saying that Which recommend Ikea kitchens and that installation is part of this review. Quite different things! Also tried to push me on his design despite the sink problem flagged by the installation company. I've had to be firm to say that I'm not accepting a design with flaws / elements that could undermine the guarantee and leave us having to replace things in the future. However, he's been quick to come back to my emails and very polite and helpful and has accepted our position. I'm waiting to see where we get to before I decide my final verdict on the value added of this service!

- we're sourcing oak work surfaces from elsewhere - good tip mackerella. They quoted £1100 for 2 x custom oak worktops, I can get them including delivery for £590 elsewhere. These are very good quality Euro oak work surfaces. Other plus is that the comapny we're buying them from have them in stock. We'd have faced a 4 week delay if we'd have ordered from Ikea as they come from Germany. Also worth knowing that their stock oak doesn't match their custom oak.

- they've been really quick to make appointments. We're also speaking to a couple of local fitters to compare costs. So far, we're at £1500 and that's just for cupboards / sink / fridge / freezer and dishwasher installation. Worktops will be extra, as will concealing the boiler. However, the Ikea installer seemed much more flexible and knowledgeable than the local guy I found on checkatrade.

So, close but no cigar.... will keep you all updated smile

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