Last week on my lunch break, at my wife’s request, I stopped by Home Depot in Virginia Beach to get some gutter guards and trash bags. I did something that I swore I’d never do. I mystery shopped one of my largest countertop competitors: Home Depot.
I was intrigued by the sign outside that read granite for $35 sf, and thought I’d investigate.
I sat down with my sales person. We’ll call her Cheryl. Cheryl was a lovely lady, she was friendly and helpful. I have nothing negative to say about my experience with her. I provided Cheryl with hand drawings of my kitchen which equaled 49.05 square feet. I selected two options (Giallo Ornamental Granite and White Arabesque Quartz.)
Cheryl asked s few specific questions, about my job and calculated a total number. I was preparing myself for the final number to be somewhere around $1,732.5 based on my square footage and the advertising outside. Cheryl presented me with two quotes, one for $4,005.60 and the other for $4,790.40.
Being in the industry, I was expecting this bait and switch tactic, as Home Depot and Lowes are not my only competitors who employ this tactic. So, I thought this experience would make good reading for those of you who follow “The World’s Most Boring Blog.”
A Quick review of the Giallo Ornamental Granite quote discovered the following:
- Giallo Ornamental was a Level 3 granite, which was not $35 a square foot, but in fact $54 a square foot. A quick review of Home Depot’s “Level 1” stones reminded me of trip to a Super 8 Motel.
- I was charged $445.50 for “edge detail.” All I requested was a “basic bullnose” edge. I came to find out the only edges they offer in their “included” price range was a “flat square” edge, or a Bevel (which I actually kinda liked).
- Next, I noticed a charge for $269 for double bowl 18 gauge sink, at QSC they are complimentary.
- After that I noticed a charge of $250 for mounting and polishing said sink.
- I was also charged $392.40 for removal and haul away of my existing countertops, which I thought was a good deal, but wasn’t offered the opportunity to do it myself.
All of these additional charges brought me to a grand total of $4,005, which based on my 49.05 square feet equaled $81.66 a square foot out the door. The quartz option reflected the exact same pricing structure at almost $97.68 per square foot.
In conclusion, there is NOTHING wrong with shopping at Home Depot or Lowes, just don’t buy their granite or quartz countertops. Buy their Hammers, nails and grills, but don’t overpay for your countertops. Come see why Quality Stone is the best priced, best reviewed countertop company in Hampton Roads. We have shorter lead times, lower prices and more industry expertise. We will gladly beat any written quote from Home Depot or Lowes and that is a Guarantee.
Quality Stone Concepts
1373 London Bridge Road,
Va Beach, VA 23453
757-275-9382 or www.qualitystoneconcepts.com
Hi, I’m with Cornerstone Marble & Granite out of Sarasota. If by any chance you still haven’t replaced your countertops I will be more than willing to give you a free Quote. I can GUARANTEE you that it will be much cheaper than what they offered you. Home depot and Lowe’s sub out their job’s. Which means they take no part in the actual production of the countertops. They up charge the costumers so then they can pay someone else to do the job for them. Sometimes it’s a hit or miss with the QUALITY and timing of the Schedule. I take pride in QUALITY don’t believe in cutting corners. My number is 352-257-1744
[…] How Home Depot's $35/SF granite magically becomes $82/SF. – A Quick review of the Giallo ornamental granite quote discovered the following: Giallo Ornamental was a Level 3 granite, which was not $35 a square foot, but in fact $54 a square foot. A quick review of Home Depot’s "Level 1" stones reminded me of trip to a Super 8 Motel. I was charged $445.50 for "edge detail." […]
This was great! I can totally see how the bill can balloon if you’re not careful. Many times, sales people won’t explain the free option. Instead they add the upgrade you selected. Either way, shopping around is the most sensible option when making such an important purchase. Thanks for your article and insight!
[…] How Home Depot's $35/SF granite magically becomes $82/SF. – How Home Depot’s $35/SF granite magically becomes $82/SF. – A Quick review of the Giallo ornamental granite quote discovered the following: Giallo Ornamental was a Level 3 granite, which was not $35 a square foot, but in fact $54 a square foot. A quick review of Home Depot’s "Level 1" stones reminded me of trip to a Super 8 Motel. […]
What would your price be for the same product?
Home Depots price includes installation. Hope you are talking apples to apples.
As an ex Kitchen designer at Home Depot I can say that this is spot on with only a few exceptions. I worked in 3 stores in two different states and I met a lot of DIYers as well as clients who only wanted countertops. I want to add a little insider info.
You can absolutely al’ a carte your countertop. If you only want the top you can have just the top without the sink and etc. I always suggest top mount sinks because undermounts have the tendency to get gross over time. If not installed with additional support brackets underneath can end up falling out. Who wants to pay $250 for that??? Top mount is free and you can always provide your own sink for top or undermount. As long as the sink is present at the time of measure they will cut the hole.
Home Depot also offers “pre fab” that generally start at $25/sf and experienced designers will always refer clients to the fabricators show room so they may select their slabs especially for non prefab tops and stones with lots of veining. These fabricators are third parties and once you’re in their showroom there’s nothing that stops you from doing business directly with the fabricator. You may or may not see a price difference here.