Lily Ann Cabinets vs Ikea: which RTA cabinet is better? 
Lily Ann Cabinets vs Ikea: which is better? Lily Ann Cabinets and IKEA are both well known RTA cabinet brands, so it’s not surprising that many people are interested in knowing which option is better. Although there are some similarities between the two different types of RTA cabinets, there are lots of differences. In this article, I look at the two cabinet brands in depth and explain why would never pick an IKEA cabinet over an online RTA brand like Lily Ann Cabinets.
Table of Contents
- Lily Ann Cabinets vs IKEA: selection, variety, and pricing
- Lily Ann Cabinets vs IKEA: assembly
- Lily Ann Cabinets vs IKEA: quality
- Lily Ann Cabinets vs IKEA: customer service
- Lily Ann Cabinets vs IKEA: which RTA cabinet option is better?
Lily Ann Cabinets vs IKEA: selection, variety, and pricing
There are currently four different lines of cabinets from IKEA. The SUNNERSTA is for mobile kitchens, and is better suited to Europe and Asian countries where kitchens are tiny, and KNOXHULT is cheap and basic. These are more direct competitors to Home Depot or Lowes than Lily Ann Cabinets.
The other two lines are ENHET and SEKTION. ENHET comes in 4 styles: white shaker, white flat-front, gray wood shaker, and wood veneer flat-front. You can get any of the ENHET cabinets in any of these finishes. SEKTION has around two dozen different styles, including shaker and flat front styles, and a few more classic options. SEKTION also has contrast options available.
Lily Ann, meanwhile has about 20 cabinet styles, which is great, but it’s a little less than some competitors, like TheRTAStore. Lily Ann’s options are very customizable, with lots of cabinet variations, as well as glass options.
As you can see here, Lily Ann Cabinets tends to be slightly more expensive than IKEA, although the actual price differences will depend on cabinet finishes and models. I have found that generally, when you calculate out the price of a complete kitchen renovation, the difference in prices between IKEA and Lily Ann Cabinets is negligible.
Lily Ann Cabinets vs IKEA: assembly
In general, IKEA cabinets are kind of like their furniture. If you’ve assembled a dresser, you can easily assemble their cabinets. Just keep in mind that the cabinets are often heavier than the furniture, so you’ll need some help.
Lily Ann Cabinets are similar, although I have found them to be very slightly more difficult. Here are the times it took me to assemble Lily Ann Cabinets vs IKEA cabinets.
|Lily Ann Cabinets||IKEA|
|Standard (upper) wall cabinet||30 – 45 minutes||30 minutes|
|Standard base cabinet without drawers||45 minutes – 1 hour||30 to 45 minutes|
|Base cabinet with drawers||1 hour – 1.5 hours||less than 1 hour|
|Full height utility cabinet||1.5 – 2.5 hours||N/A|
|Individual drawer assembly||20 minutes each||less than 15 minutes each|
|Small upper cabinets||30 minutes||30 minutes|
Lily Ann Cabinets vs IKEA: quality
I found Lily Ann Cabinets to generally offer much higher quality than IKEA.
All of Lily Ann Cabinets’ cabinets are made from real plywood (generally birch). Lily Ann Cabinets and other online RTA cabinet brands stand out for their high quality materials. For example, here’s a cross-section of one of the Lily Ann Cabinets frames sliced in half so you can see what’s inside:
In contrast, here is a cross section of the back of an IKEA EHNET cabinet:
Clearly, the Lily Ann Cabinets frame is far superior. The IKEA backing is a slight step up from cardboard while the Lily Ann frame parts are real, heavy plywood.
For cabinet doors, Lily Ann and IKEA both offer several different options, made of different materials. However, Lily Ann Cabinets’ materials tend to be either real wood or high density fiberboard. Here’s an example of a Lily Ann Cabinets door cut in half:
In contrast, IKEA tends to use lower quality materials like MDF and melamine for their doors. Here’s a cross section of an IKEA ENHET door:
For hardware components, Lily Ann Cabinets is better as well. For instance, here are the clips that hold ENHET cabinets together:
Lily Ann offers mostly metal hardware, with some plastic parts. Some other RTA cabinet sellers offer full metal hardware on most of their cabinets.
Overall, there’s no comparison between the quality of IKEA cabinets and online RTA cabinet brands like Lily Ann. The online brands are far superior.
Lily Ann Cabinets vs IKEA: customer service
The customer service at IKEA is excellent, and you can return unopened things almost a year later (opened stuff gets 6 months). This offers a lot of flexibility, since you don’t have to be 100% certain of your kitchen plans at the outset. That being said, you can’t just pick up the cabinets from your local store. Some have to be shipped. So IKEA isn’t as convenient as you would imagine.
Lily Ann Cabinets’ customer service isn’t quite as easy to deal with, and it’s very difficult to return unbroken parts to them. However, they make the process of replacing damaged cabinets very easy, and they tend to be very responsive to support requests.
Overall, I felt that IKEA does beat Lily Ann Cabinets in this aspect, although there are other RTA cabinet brands that do beat IKEA in customer service.
Lily Ann Cabinets vs IKEA: which RTA cabinet option is better?
All in all, I found Lily Ann Cabinets to be far superior to IKEA. I wouldn’t hesitate to use Lily Ann Cabinets again, due to their high quality and selection. In contrast, I don’t think I would use IKEA again, except if I were renovating a kitchen in a cheap rental apartment or mobile home.