Thursday, April 2, 2015

GRANITE countertops are IN

Alternate title to post: True Life: I hire contractors from Craigslist.


There are a PLETHORA of places to find contractors these days. Angies list, Home Advisor, your next door neighbor. For previous job/quotes around the house, I went to Home Advisor (it's free, Angies list isn't, and i'm cheap). They have great reviews, the people seemed legit, whatevs. BUT, the contractors had some jacked up prices, and I got a MILLION e-mails/phone calls from Home Advisor people which made my eyes twitch.

So, one day, whilst needing someone to install butcherblock for a REASONABLE amount of change, I pursued craigslist... Under Services > Skilled Trade. A few things I ALWAYS look for prior to e-mailing:

>>Pictures of work!
>>Legit title (not like @@@@%%%%%EXPERIENCED ROOFER%%%%@@@@) <--actual title
>>Complete sentences and no misspellings in the listing (it's weird, but shows how much time they spent/cared)
>>Quick to respond to e-mails**

**This one is huge to me. If they are going to take a week to get back to you, imagine trying to get a hold of them when their plumbing job is now leaking all over your bathroom.  

HERE'S why i'm telling you this. THE GRANITE COUNTERS WERE INSTALLED!



BUT, let's back up a hot second. SO, before I even ripped up the old countertop, I started to e-mail a few companies. One responded quickly, had great prices and was very responsive (even if it was just a one worded e-mail, whatevs). I asked him to stop over and check out the area I wanted Granite for (don't worry parental units, I had others at the house when he stopped by). He came by, measured everything out, had a sample of what I wanted and was on his way. I told him i'd call once I was ready.

Fast forward a month. I'm ready, so I call him up and am all like "hey let's do this!" So I went to his shop to pick out the exact piece of granite (he didn't have a huge selection in the color I wanted, so this was quick!). We agreed he'd come the following Thurdsay to install. On Tuesday, I shot him a quick - here's my address see you Thursday, to which I got a quick response of "Sorry, sold that piece to a vanity."

WEEKS of communication with him in the trash - and antsy to get something installed. 

FORTUNATELY, this story has a happy ending (obviously). I found another guy, EPIC Granite out of Minnetonka. He was pretty responsive to my e-mails, so we went to his shop to pick out the piece of granite. All was fine and dandy, he was going to stop by the following Friday to measure the piece, SIMPLE.


THEN, Friday came. It was a minute past the time he said he was going to stop by. Not that I expected him to be punctual, but I just KNEW this wasn't going to be easy. So, I called. And he's all like "yeah i'm on my way!"....called back 30 minutes later "Hey, can you just measure it for me?". OKAY, not a horrible request. I measured everything (adding 1" to all sides, knowing they'd fit in place on-site).


The following Monday, the two installers showed up with a RATHER small slice of granite. Like 1 FOOT short on both sides. Because, measuring is hard? I'm sure the look on my face had them fearing their own life, because they were very nice and apologetic, saying they'd be back the following day with a bigger piece. LOL, the following day. JOKES.


ANYWAYS, I put on my bossy pants and was all, THIS SHOULDN'T BE THAT HARD. FINALLY, a week after they initially were to have it installed, IT WAS IN. And I am semi-satisfied with it. I'm not saying I could have done a better job, but i'm saying the perfectionist in me probably won't go through them again.


Once they left, I got busy adding trim around the cement board to add a nice edge to the future-back splash. SPEAKING of back splash. The first round of tile samples came in. I'm going a little different route than I initially thought i'd go. I was thinking of doing a darker backsplash, long skinny horizontal pieces in a mosaic. As I was searching for the perfect pattern, I found myself getting sick of the colors. Which ISN'T good, since you don't just like switch out back splashes erryday. So I decided to go with a LIGHTER color scheme, haven't chosen the size quite yet...



What's your fav?! I have a fave in this batch, so I ordered a few more samples like it so I can REALLY be sure I chose the right one. More on that later though...

FOR NOW, let's just oogle over this:




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