In life, you get what you pay for. If you visited a doctor, lawyer, accountant, architect, etc., and they worked for free, you probably wouldn’t have much faith in them. Why should you entrust your most valuable asset to an unqualified person who has so little respect for themselves that they work for free?

When you get a “Free Design & Quote” for a kitchen, do you ever think about what that means to you?

Nothing is free in this life, everything worth having has a price.

The person offering a Free Design & Quote is NEVER a qualified person, they are commission salespeople who are there for one reason only………. To SELL you a kitchen. It’s never about your needs, it’s always about their need to make a sale, (they are commission only sales people, so if they don’t sell they don’t get paid), as a result the design is rarely good, as they have had a week to 10 days training, most of it on selling, not on designing, and they design to keep it cheap, not to give you a good result. Their theory being, “if I keep it cheap, they might buy it”, because the salesperson knows we are all price conscious to some degree or other.

Conversely, at Let’s Talk Kitchens & Interiors our designs are never the cheapest, but we will promise to be designing to give you the best result possible in the first instance. Sure, as we go down the track we might have to compromise a bit, (who was it that said “life wasn’t meant to be easy”?), but you/we should always start from the best design solution we can find, and then work from there. Any other approach would be compromising your amenity, the value of your home and the capital you are about to invest in the renovation.

We can work on your behalf in one of two ways.

1. Design, Construct and Project Manage your complete renovation.

This is our preferred way of working with our clients, because when we project manage everything, we can better manage the final outcome on your behalf.

The Design Fee for this option is currently $1,800 inc. GST., per a major room, i.e. a kitchen, a full bathroom, large WIR, and $900 inc. GST for a minor room, i.e. laundry, small entertainment unit, small home office, etc.  where the design work is a precursor to our building the project for you. When you choose this option, 40% of the fees are rebated back off your project cost on a room by room basis, when you select Let's Talk Kitchens & Interiors to actually execute the project.

After 48 years in business, we know fairly accurately how long it will take to design and specify a given space, so we've been able to give our clients a set figure, rather than an hourly rate, where you never quite know where the finish line will be. This fee is not revenue generating in its own right, it's simply a raw cost recovery device. Hence why it is so low.

The Design Fee covers the following:

  • Up to 4 meetings with your designer, should the time taken exceed this, we may have to adjust the fee.
  • Complete detailed floor plans
  • Complete elevations for each wall
  • Benchtop layouts
  • Comprehensive written specification, detailing the complete cabinetry costing in the finishes selected.
  • Comprehensive trades costing for all onsite trades work as required.
  • Complete builders quotation for all structural work required.
  • We will cost the trades work for you, even if you have your own favorite tradesman you wish to use etc., so you know what to expect these services might cost you privately.
  • As we don't sell or supply appliances, we can advise you on appropriate products for your project, on an unbiased basis.

2. Design only, on an hourly "fee for service" basis.

Should you wish to engage us to simply do the design work, (because your builder already has a cabinetmaker, or other such reason), our standard rate is $150.00/hour for design only work.  When we meet you and we have had a chance to understand your project, we will be in a better position to discuss your fees in more detail.

On a fee for service basis, we can do any and/or, all of the following:

  • Site inspection
  • Development of the design brief
  • Discussions with your builder
  • Complete detailed floor plans
  • Complete elevations
  • Benchtop layouts
  • Comprehensive written specification, detailing the complete cabinetry
  • Comprehensive trades listing for trades work as required
  • Design & specify the structural work required
  • As we don't sell or supply appliances, we can advise you on appropriate products for your project, on an unbiased basis.

There are a number of major elements involved, below are some typical spends which will vary depending on your material and finishes selection.

1. Cabinets - there are a lot of choices available.  LPL Laminate (often called Melamine),with ABS edge, Standard or Engineered Veneer, High Pressure Laminate, Solid Timber, Acrylics, Textured or Gloss Vinyl, and Textured, Gloss or Satin 2 Pack Paint. New materials are always entering the market. depending on size, configuration and internal fittings your cabinets can range from $15,000-40,000.

2. Benchtops - a huge range to choose from these days, from Laminate to “Solid Surface Stone”, (e.g. Corian or Staron), or an Engineered Stone benchtop such as Caesar Stone or Quantum Quartz, or a Porcelain based Stone, like Dekton or natural Marble or Granite. Typically benchtop spends in stone can range between $4,000 – 15,000.

3. Trades - a group of tradesmen are required for all the onsite work. Including removal of the old kitchen, cart away rubbish, install new cabinets,  disconnect and reconnect the taps, oven & hotplate, dishwasher, duct the hood externally, plumb an ice maker fridge if necessary, provide power points to microwave, dw, hotplate, fridge and r/hood etc, wire the oven, LED task ligthing to under cabinets or ambient lighting, repair any plaster and re-cornice  as necessary, glass splashbacks or tiling and anything else that needs doing to reinstate your home. These costs can typically range between $6,500-12,000.

You will need to buy some appliances. This will vary depending on your selection.

Other Considerations

  • Sometimes, you may require some structural work.
  • Are you considering new flooring or are you happy to work around the existing floor plan?
  • Internal fittings & features – types and quantity

Registered Building Practitioner

An absolutely important thing to remember is that anyone who does work on your behalf exceeding $16,000, MUST by law be a Registered Building Practitioner (RBP). If they are not, you have NO guarantee, no redress if anything goes wrong or God forbid they take your money and disappear. Unfortunately, most firms who design & sell kitchen & bathroom renovations are NOT registered. Always ask the person you are considering dealing with for their RBP license number.

It goes without saying that we are a RPB our License nos. are DB-L 41495 & CDB-L 51907.