10 Red Flags When Choosing Your Countertop Fabricator
With the average cost of new kitchen countertops ranging from $1,900 to $4,300, before you make that big investment in your home, you want to make sure you're hiring the best countertop fabricator.
While it might be fun and exciting to select your new countertop, choosing who to hire to install it can feel more challenging. Wondering what red flags you should watch out for when hiring someone to fabricate and install your new countertops? Read on for ten things to be aware of when you decide who to hire!
1. Company vs. Individual
The saying ‘jack of all trades, master of none’ applies to the countertop industry, too. You should be concerned if the individual selling you the countertop is the same person templating, fabricating, and installing your project, plus running the business. While it might seem like a very hands-on approach, you're unfortunately dealing with a fabricator, not a fabrication company. When trying to do too many things, it's a proven fact that nothing will get done well.
Alps Craftsman is a professional fabrication company. We have a team of people who manage, sell, and execute projects with a wide range of customers. Plus, all our employees are legally documented to work, so you never have to be concerned with who is entering your home.
2. Lack of Experience
If you expect high-quality results, you want to hire someone who has experience in the industry. Don't be afraid to ask how long the fabricator has been doing this type of work.
Alps Craftsman has been in business for over 30 years, having installed over 100,000 countertops in both new construction and existing residential dwellings. Our expertise is demonstrated by our longevity and continuously growing customer list.
3. High-Pressure Sales Tactics
Making any kind of investment in your home is a big deal. With the high cost of new countertops, you need information and patience from your sales team, not high-pressure sales tactics and forced decision-making. Such tactics tell you the company cares more about the sale than helping you make the best decision.
At Alps Craftsman, we don’t limit your number of design appointments. We’re your partners along your journey and respect that everyone’s creative process is different.
4. No Showroom or Factory
Another warning sign is when the fabricator runs an unprofessional job site or has no factory/showroom to present options. The Alps Craftsman design center is an investment we made so that our customers are able to work alongside our design team in a professional setting. Many fabricators don’t make the same type of investment in their customers.
Sometimes fabricators sell you a countertop but have another company make it. This is not an ideal situation as you have no information about this third party. Our large production facility allows us to make all the countertops we sell so that the Alps Craftsman quality expectations are met every step of the way.
5. Unrealistically Low Prices
Often one of the important goals of a remodel project is to keep costs low. Yet, the old adage applies—if it sounds too good to be true, it likely is.
Shop around so you know what to expect to spend. If someone is offering products and services for significantly less than other companies, it's a red flag. It often means they are using lesser quality materials, but selling them as Grade-A slabs. Or they could be cutting corners in another manner.
We price our services extremely competitively at Alps Craftsman. We’re often not the cheapest out there, nor do we want to be. Our professional team and over 30 years of experience allow us to charge fair prices so you can trust the job will be done correctly the first time, truly investing in your home.
6. Fabrication Procedures
There’s a right way to do things and then there’s not. Many fabricators rely on only their experience with making countertops and don’t focus on the education side of the industry that’s needed to stay up to date with current guidelines. Materials and techniques constantly change so the Alps Craftsman team networks with multiple industry organizations to always stay on top of our craft.
Certain material manufacturers also have strict guidelines that need to be followed when fabricating or installing countertops so that their warranty will be upheld in the event of an incident down the line. Most fabricators don’t follow said guidelines because they believe they know better. Unfortunately, you will be the one with a broken countertop that won’t get fixed because your fabricator did things wrong. Alps Craftsman always follows these manufacturer guidelines so that any warranty issues are resolved appropriately.
7. Non-Branded Materials
Fabricators often sell non-branded quartz and other products that they have acquired themselves, whether from importing directly or purchasing from a company domestically. While the price of these materials might look attractive, they are often lacking in quality and could even be considered B-Grade slabs. Plus, a fabricator often tries to push their own product since they’ve already paid for the material on their end, so they are trying to recoup their investment.
At Alps Craftsmans, we don’t import material and only use Grade-A slabs. We only work with branded materials from companies that are well-known in the industry and have passed our own quality inspections. If we can’t trust it, we don’t sell it. It’s that simple.
8. No Contract Sales
One of the warning signs to watch for is when a countertop fabricator doesn't require a contract.
Anytime you are spending a significant amount of money and having a professional do work, you want to sign a contract with the exact specifications of what you expect to be delivered. A contract protects you and the business, too.
9. Unsafe Transportation Practices
Many countertop products are fragile, especially in transit. They are subject to cracking or chipping, which would result in a costly problem. You want to know if the contractor will transport your materials in an enclosed vehicle, not something open like a pick-up truck.
We only use enclosed vans that are stocked with the necessary tools to complete the job correctly.
10. Lack of Communication
A good contractor vs. a bad contractor often involves communication. You may order your countertops and have a waiting period while they are prepped.
Yet, it can feel worrisome to put down a large deposit and then not hear from them for a long time. Ask whomever you hire how they'll communicate the stages of the project with you.
At Alps Craftsman, every job has a dedicated project manager that constantly communicates throughout the project. This is on top of our in-house design team that supports you during the initial planning process. Our expert team will provide you with peace of mind from start to finish.
Red Flags When Hiring a Countertop Contractor
Investing in new countertops for your home means a big home improvement. You want to hire a professional company that will do the job the right way. If you need experienced and trusted countertop installation, Alps Craftsman can help. Contact us to learn more about our countertop services today!