Which Kitchen Companies Should Be Avoided?

(50 Posts)
ELW85 Fri 30-Oct-20 09:41:59

Apologies if this isn’t in the best section, but we’re moving house snd are going to be knocking the kitchen through j to the dining room and putting a new kitchen/living area in.
We love the look of a Wren kitchen we’ve found but have been put off by some nightmare stories.
Can anyone shed some light; who should we avoid? Currently browsing Magnet and Howdens too.
We have a small baby so can’t afford for f-ups that’ll lead to a kitchen disaster or work ongoing for weeks!
Also intro hear if we should just avoid the Wren fitters if the quality of their product is otherwise good?


OP’s posts: |
billyt Fri 30-Oct-20 10:48:54

Hi Op, we have a Wren kitchen, fitted a couple of years ago. The units are very good and solid.

But don't use their installation team. Way over-priced. I normally do all DIY but salesman convinced me that in the unlikely event of any issues they would be quickly solved by using their team as they would get bits next day rather than having to stick to usual delivery schedules.

He lied. He gave me utter bullshit. Delivery was as scheduled. Fitters turned up on day arranged, so far so good. Except there were some doors missing. Had to wait for scheduled delivery which was ten days later! this happened twice.

Get a local fitter to install.

I'm pleased with the units, just the sales and install aren't good.

ArmchairCritics Fri 30-Oct-20 10:51:19

If you happen to be in the west of Scotland PM me and I can let you know about a local company to avoid.

UnconsideredTrifles Fri 30-Oct-20 10:55:59

We've had recent experience with Howdens delivering the wrong items repeatedly - though they blamed that on one in-house designer I think so that may be person specific!

ELW85 Fri 30-Oct-20 11:04:16

@billyt - thank you, that’s really helpful! We turned up for our design meeting and the sales guy was super slimy and hadn’t done any prep, so we weren’t impressed with that! We love the kitchen we’ve found and my brother is a builder (but super busy) so it sounds like maybe getting it delivered and fitted separately would be ok?

@ArmchairCritics - oh I’m in Newcastle but I hope your experience with the local company was resolved?

@UnconsideredTrifles - oh no!! I can’t be doing with that it would drive me mad. Did they resolve it well?

OP’s posts: |
Chasingsquirrels Fri 30-Oct-20 11:07:48

Have a look at DIY Kitchens 're pricing. They have lots of styles so you might find something similar to the Wren one.

ELW85 Fri 30-Oct-20 11:08:24

@Chasingsquirrels - thanks for the tip!

OP’s posts: |


Em8725 Fri 30-Oct-20 11:13:47

Don’t go for b and q either. Utter shambles. I’ve had 5 delivery dates so far and it still isn’t all here. As I was writing this post another bit turned up!
They missed bits off, ordered us extra stuff we didn’t need/want that weren’t supposed to be on the design. I would never use them again.

Youvegotafriendinme Fri 30-Oct-20 11:18:54

My DS has just had a kitchen fitted with wren and they had nothing but issues and they never did finish it.

We used IKEA but my DH fitted it. We did an awful lot of research before buying and ikeas kitchens came out at the top of a which list but bottom for their fitters. Seems it’s the fitters that are the issue in most cases

wowfudge Fri 30-Oct-20 11:21:21

If you decide to go with Magnet, find a fitter with a trade account there - they'll be able to buy the same kitchen for less than the retail price Magnet will charge you and are unlikely to charge anywhere near as much for fitting. We laughed when we got Magnet's quote. Went to DIY Kitchens instead.

billyt Fri 30-Oct-20 11:21:58

Hi ELW85,

I wish I had had it delivered and either installed myself or got a local fitter.

As a side note, all Wren units come pre-built.

SendHelp30 Fri 30-Oct-20 11:22:57

Do not go with Wren. The quality and finish is atrocious. I didn’t use their fitter so can’t comment on that but the kitchen itself is crap!

SendHelp30 Fri 30-Oct-20 11:23:47

You can pay more at Howdens for ready built units as opposed to flat pack. Howdens all the way

IAintentDead Fri 30-Oct-20 11:26:58

DIY kitchens are better quality than Wren -

Pretty sure any style they have in Wren, they also have at DIY. Plus they don't do 'hard sell'. If you have any way of visiting their showroom, it's an excellent day out. They provide tea, coffee and home made cakes too. (not sure if they do at the moment). Prices closer to Wren's sale prices. Carcases come made up solid, sizes in 50mm increments so you can easily have a bespoke looking kitchen.

My fitter usually used Howden's and was very sceptical - now recommends DIY to all customers.

This is mine

billyt Fri 30-Oct-20 11:31:22


Nothing at all wrong with the quality and finish of my units. Still very happy.

Just the selling and installation are shit

UnconsideredTrifles Fri 30-Oct-20 11:54:22

DH was fitting it for a client, I think after about the third mis-delivery he adjusted the remaining dodgy bits to fit!

I can second (third?) the DIY Kitchens recommendations - came ready-built and no mistakes!

Egghead68 Fri 30-Oct-20 11:55:28

Magnet Amersham. Total nightmare.

ELW85 Fri 30-Oct-20 14:15:17

Thanks for all the comments everyone; keep them coming!
It sounds like pretty mixed results everywhere although everyone loves DIY Kitchens? I’ve never heard of them, so am busy browsing their site as we speak!

OP’s posts: |
ZeroFuchsGiven Fri 30-Oct-20 14:18:04

A Friend of mine just had a Wren kitchen fitted and they had nothing but issues.

DannyGlickWindowTapping Fri 30-Oct-20 14:29:31

Just had a Wren kitchen fitted. The fitting team were actually very good, but I think it's luck of the draw. My sales person was not good - lied about things, "forgot to mention" lots of others. Whoever you go for, ask what it doesn't include.... Wren fitters will slot in integrated appliances, but won't connect them unless you pay extra. They have rubbish taps, so if you supply your own, they won't fit unless you pay extra (less surprising, but still annoying when you have a standard tap connection included in the fitting service). If you have a quartz worktop, it cannot be measured, made, delivered and fitted until the kitchen units are in place. This can add up to 3 weeks to the time without a worktop and any integrated hob (although they will fit a temporary sink and tap). I also had to do a lot of ringing around to coordinate all the teams - branded as "Wren", but separate companies for customer services, worktops, appliances, logistics, fitting etc.. Pretty crap service, but the kitchen is what I wanted and is decent quality.

Hadalifeonce Fri 30-Oct-20 14:39:12

Don't go with anyone who doesn't come out to your house. They need to talk through how you expect to use your kitchen, what your style is. Also a professional will have some great ideas you haven't thought of. You can't get any of this from a diagram in a showroom.

wowfudge Fri 30-Oct-20 16:56:30

DIY don't come to your house - they sell online so have lower overheads which is why they are such good value. Get a design you like from AN Other and recreate it on DIY's planner or I think they will do you a quote based on any design you've got. They'll also sense check it and make sure everything you need is included, all the doors open the correct way, etc., etc.

Shadowboy Fri 30-Oct-20 17:58:43

We had a stunning Wren kitchen. All was absolutely fine- not a single issue. We did however have our own carpenter fit it. He was impressed with the quality for the price.

RHOBHfan Fri 30-Oct-20 18:01:29

Used Wickes for a £20k kitchen (design, supply and fit)

No complaints at all.

Appreciate their fitters are self employed therefore must be luck of the draw though.

Ratched Fri 30-Oct-20 18:04:37

We have had three Howdens kitchens so far.
Independent fitters to put it in, but Howdens customer service second to none.
The units are solid, excellent quality.
Do NOT but their ovens, hobs etc (Lamara)? Pretty crap, but the units are fab.

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