The answer to this question is, it depends. It depends, first of all, on where and from whom you buy your granite countertop. The difference between buying on-site granite countertops and countertops made elsewhere will be discussed, and a pros-and-cons analysis between the two will be provided as well.|
On-site granite countertops
If you are buying your granite countertop on-site, that probably means you are purchasing it directly from the manufacturer or fabricator. Many companies now have outlet stores, allowing their customers to purchase their products without having to search for a credible retailer. Also, shopping for a granite countertop at a company outlet may save you some money. Retailers' percentages are a thing of the past, when shopping at a company outlet.
There are several advantages to buying on-site. The first of these is the cost. Buying a countertop which was made on-site can reduce the cost of the piece by as much as 30 percent. Buying it directly from the manufacturer or fabricator is also added quality assurance. You can be sure you are getting what you pay for, if you buy direct.
However, most people would not leave the state to buy a granite countertop directly from the manufacturer or fabricator. If you are lucky enough to live near a company that makes granite countertops, buying one from them should be simple. For most people, this is not an option.
If you are buying a granite countertop and do not see a large amount of heavy equipment lying about, that probably means you are buying from a retailer. Retail shopping is more convenient than outlet shopping, particularly for heavy items such as granite countertops. If you do not know of a manufacturer or fabricator in your area, going to your nearest fixture retailer is the next best thing. Most retailers will even offer to deliver your granite countertop right to your doorstep, and some even offer installation assistance.
The downside of this convenience is that it comes at a cost. Purchasing a granite countertop from a retailer is sure to be more expensive than buying it directly from the manufacturer. Additional service that retailers commonly offer, such as delivery and installation, can raise the cost of the item as well.
Also, quality assurance is compromised. Buying a granite countertop from a retailer means that the product has taken two trips: first, from the manufacturer to the retailer, and second, from the retailer to your home. While in transport, a granite countertop can easily bump into other hard objects, damaging it and ruining the product's quality. While most retailer go to great lengths to maintain their products' quality, there are companies that do not care one way or the other. Usually, these companies will even try to repair damaged goods and sell them, without the customers knowing that the product is shoddy.