So, our Ikea kitchen design process was fairly smooth … actually, it went very smoothly. We designed, on our home computers, and ordered our kitchen, at Ikea, without any problems. We had appropriate expectations: we knew it wouldn’t be a five minute ordering process at the store … and we were right. I think it took about an hour or so … even with everything completely decided in the 3D design program. I don’t know why some people think it will be a faster process … but, well, it simply isn’t.
This is a bit of a flashback post: we ordered our kitchen when we bought the house, which also happened to be at the very end of one of their 20% off sales, and delayed the delivery to the very extent that Ikea allowed – which was a month from purchase. We needed to prep our kitchen as much as possible for the delivery – aka gut it. We waited to design the kitchen after everything went through with the house and we were sure we would be purchasing it. We ordered the kitchen the day we moved in (literally, that night).
Here’s what a week of prep & packing, a full day of moving, & a trip to Ikea looks like
(…also I’m pretty sure no makeup or shower – Disclaimer: Laziness factor one million as I took zero photos with our real camera and relied on my iPhone… sorry about that):
As a side note, we apparently got a great “20% off kitchen” sale. Ours was 20% off all kitchen related items – no strings attached, except a minimum purchase, which we easily met. An employee said that in the past, the “20% off sale” had fine print stipulations that would change every sale – sometimes it would be 20% off with the purchase of x amount in appliances or something. This would make a lot of people mad because the sale advertisements implied (except for the fine print) just straight forward savings. For us, after the sale timeframe expired, the kitchen representatives extended the sale to some additional kitchen purchases for odds and ends – which was nice of them.
Now, I will say that overall it is very nice that Ikea changed it’s kitchen delivery system: previously (I’m not sure how long ago), there was a pretty high charge for delivery when ordering a kitchen – I don’t recall, because I wasn’t purchasing a kitchen at the time. Currently, the charge is $50 if you’re local … for the entire kitchen!! This is pretty amazing and a no brainer – after experiencing picking up other things in the “self serve” area of the store in the past, I can’t imagine trying to pick up an entire kitchen order. Ikea has a contract with local delivery companies, I suppose this is how they keep costs low.
However, I suppose you get what you pay for – the delivery was somewhat of a disaster. Well, maybe that’s too harsh… it was annoying and time consuming. When we ordered, we made sure to say multiple times to the Ikea kitchen representative that the delivery people should be prepared for a very steep driveway… which they were not.
The delivery person was by himself & had no help. When I asked if he was warned about our driveway, he said he hadn’t been. He could only get a small portion of our order up to the house before he gave up. He said that he had to make another attempt with more people. Now, I completely understand why he wanted to come back later, but I was ready & had put aside time for our delivery.
Three days later another group of delivery men came back with the rest of the order. They too – were not warned about the steep driveway. This time, they did bring everything up to the house from the truck. As they came in, I organized related things into rough stacks and tried to keep track of what they were bringing in. (You have to sign a document saying that you received delivery – but there isn’t a practical amount of time to check if you actually have the complete order.)
As it turns out, we didn’t receive our entire order and had to figure out what exactly, was missing. This involved the obvious: organization of stacking boxes together with the same number and checking them against the order list. It was a much more involved sequence of events, but I’ll go into that later. A week and a half after our second delivery, and almost two weeks after the first, we received a third delivery from Ikea.
Overall, the delivery of our Ikea kitchen cabinets didn’t go as smoothly as it could have. If we had been under a strict time constraint, two weeks for a complete delivery would have been ridiculous. (…and even then, we still had a lot of back and forth due to damaged items.)
In retrospect, I can’t remember quite why the delivery was more of an issue at the time (I think it mainly had to do with the missing pieces making an organizational nightmare) but it was getting annoying. I was more disappointed with Ikea than the delivery guys I think, because they are such an efficient company – I expected a better experience. But, in the end, I can’t be sure who was at fault – Ikea or the delivery company.
I know our Ikea delivery sounds like a bit of a downer – but I thought it was important to be honest about the realities of our experience. I will say though, from ordering to reordering: the Ikea staff was always nice and accommodating and helped sort through any issues or questions.