When buying new granite or quartz countertops should you use a big box store like a Home Depot or Lowes or a smaller local fabricator?
On the market for new countertops? If so you’ve probably made a trip to one of the big box stores to see what’s available. If you’ve gotten a quote, you’ve probably quickly realized that the $35 granite countertops that they advertise outside of the store don’t really exist. Once you’ve tacked on the additional charges, taxes, trip fees, under mount sink cut outs, back splashes, edge detail and the “free” sink, the price that you’ve been quoted is typically consistent with other smaller, local fabricators.
Usually when you deal with a Home Depot or Lowes, their incredible buying power allows them to offer inexpensive prices on hammers, nuts, screws, or lawn mowers. This doesn’t work for the service side of their business.
Contrary to what might be represented, the Big Box stores will outsource their granite fabrication to a local fabricator. Typically in Virginia Beach, those companies are Rock Solid Surfaces and Trindco. Lowes and Home Depot’s incredible buying power usually drives prices down, however, in countertops they have just introduced another middle man, and it drives up the price. Not to mention, it adds another level of complexity to your order if anything goes wrong along the way.
If a problem arises at Home Depot or Lowes, ask yourself how are you going to resolve it? Are you going to call the Lowes corporate, or the hourly sales person who sold it to you? Are you going to contact Rock Solid or Trendco? The installers probably wouldn’t help as they are generally contract laborers.
There are plenty of reasons to work directly with smaller “local” fabricators. Many times you’ll have more selections available, they are always industry experts, and if there is a problem that arises, it’s not difficult to hold them accountable and get it resolved in a timely manner.
Published by Quality Stone Concepts. Come see our new showroom at 1373 London Bridge Road, VA Beach (Opening July 1st).