How to Evaluate a Contractor

Tan concrete countertop with oval integral sink

Evaluating a Concrete Countertop Maker

Currently demand in the U.S. for concrete countertops outstrips supply. There simply aren’t enough competent contractors in all areas of the country. Contractors are seeing the popularity of concrete countertops and getting into the business. This is good, but it also necessitates caution.

You MUST perform due diligence on any contractor who claims to make concrete countertops. Get references, get samples, and see actual projects they’ve done. Find out how much experience they have or how well they’ve been trained. Consider the contractor’s professionalism and membership in any trade organizations.

Important points to remember:

Not all concrete countertops are created equal.

Many decorative concrete contractors, while honestly trying to serve their customers, mistakenly believe that they can elevate a floor on some cabinets, and that makes a concrete countertop. As a design professional or homeowner, you know that the aesthetic and performance requirements of any countertop are different from those for any floor. Many excellent concrete countertop craftsmen get started with floors, but do not assume that because a contractor has experience with concrete floors that he can automatically make a good concrete countertop.

You MUST perform due diligence on any contractor who claims to make concrete countertops. Get references, get samples, and see actual projects they’ve done. Find out how much experience they have or how well they’ve been trained. Consider the contractor’s professionalism and membership in any trade organizations.

Concrete countertops are and should be expensive.

Do NOT automatically go with the lowest bidder. If a contractor claims that he can make concrete countertops for you for $25 per square foot, he doesn’t know what he’s doing. Doing a good job at concrete countertops requires a great deal of skill, attention to detail and hard work. Anyone who does concrete countertops for $25 per square foot will put himself out of business very quickly – at your expense.

You should expect prices that are higher than granite, in the range of $70 to $200 per square foot or higher in many areas of the country and especially for highly custom and sculptural work. Good concrete countertops are worth it!

The Concrete Countertop Institute hears numerous stories of experienced concrete countertop professionals being underbid by someone who thinks that they can elevate a sidewalk and call it a concrete countertop. The results are always disastrous. Imagine having a big, heavy piece of concrete installed on your nice new kitchen cabinets, and then having to have it ripped out and spend even more money on different countertops. Please do not make this mistake! Please help us eliminate bad concrete countertops by not buying them.

How to recognize good concrete countertops.

To help you understand what constitutes acceptable versus unacceptable quality of concrete countertops, we have created photo galleries with many examples.

  • Click here to see great examples of concrete countertops.
  • Click here to see the "Hall of Shame" gallery that shows what can happen if you hire just anybody to make concrete countertops for you.

You must perform due diligence.

Click here for a form that will help you evaluate a concrete countertop maker.

Do your due diligence, find a good concrete countertop maker, pay him or her what the product is worth, and you will have a beautiful, unique countertop that will serve you well for years to come.