Can I Install a Granite Countertop in a Kitchen With An Uneven Floor?

You may be planning to install a granite countertop in a kitchen which has an uneven or unlevel floor. This isn’t that unusual in many kitchens, especially in older homes with foundations that have settled. In any case, you only need to worry about the cabinets themselves being level. If properly installed, the cabinets may not be a problem, especially if they are relatively new. So yes, you can install a granite countertop in a kitchen with an unlevel floor. You just need to be sure that the counter itself is level.

So, what if the cabinets aren’t quite level enough? If you have older cabinets, it’s not all that rare for them to settle along with the rest of the house. But obviously, you want your granite top to be as level as possible. Installing countertops on an unlevel surface can cause crevices between different sections. This can lead to water seeping in, which can cause multiple problems, such as mold growth or the harboring of germs. It also puts stress on the cabinets because the weight of the counter not being distributed evenly. All that aside, uneven counters just don’t function very well or look very good. Having an even surface is important for both practical and aesthetic reasons. Not to worry, this issue is easily resolved.

One common solution is to use plywood shims on the tops of the uneven cabinets. This should alleviate any leveling problems and any good countertop installer should know how to do this if it’s necessary. If you don’t want to see the shims, you can use trim between the counter and the cabinets. For style reasons, trim is already commonly used when installing countertops to give the kitchen a more finished look. If you’re planning on re-staining or painting the cabinets, then the trim will look natural and won’t be much extra work anyway. Even if you don’t use trim, shims are usually only obvious if you’re looking at the connection between the counter and cabinets from below.

These steps are actually true for other types of countertops, as well. But it’s especially important in the case of granite due to the weight of the slabs. Over time you can end up with seams between the different sections of the counter. Also, some parts can put extra pressure on the joints that hold the counter onto the cabinets. This will cause more damage to the cabinets than the counter. Either way, these problems are fixable. But as you now know, these problems can be mostly preventable in the very beginning when they are installed. Well-built joints and/or shims, as well as solid cabinetry, should allow you to have a perfectly level granite countertop that you can enjoy for years to come.

Hilliard Ohio Kitchen Remodel

Hiring an experienced contractor from the start can help ensure this is done properly. This is true in all countertop installation scenarios. However, experience is especially important when working with uneven surfaces. Be sure to discuss the situation with your contractor right away so that everyone is on the same page. This also helps ensure you’ve hired the right professional.

Why It’s Best to Have a Scope of Work

There are many companies that claim that they offer design/build services. But if they don’t offer scope development, then they really aren’t a true design build firm. So what’s so important about having a scope of work? You may be familiar with the expression: the devil is in the details. That’s definitely true in remodeling. While you can’t plan for every contingency, a developed scope of work will help cover details that may otherwise be overlooked. It can also help you form the best possible estimate for what your project will realistically cost.

So here is what a scope of work actually entails, thanks to this definition from Udemy.

“The Scope of Work (SOW) is a formal agreement document that specifies all the criteria of a contract between a service provider (vendor) and the customer. It clearly documents the projectDesign-Build-Remodeling requirements, milestones, deliverables, end products, documents and reports that are expected to be provided by the vendor.”

Because it’s part of the work contract itself, the scope of work allows for a clear understanding for all parties involved. Everything from homeowner requirements to the complete outline of the project is included. Every tiny detail is scrutinized and included for the protection of all involved. The last thing you want is for some important detail to be forgotten. By having everything spelled out in a document, everyone has a chance to be on the same page at all time.

One of the major parts of a scope of work is setting objectives and realistic project timelines. You’ve probably heard lots about projects being broken down into phases. This is all outlined in a scope of work. Each phase has to be spelled out completely. While working out of all this can take some time, it’s well worth it to dispel any potential confusion. If any communication breakdowns do happen, you always have the scope of work to refer back to in that case.

Also, the scope of work includes any maintenance agreements, warranties, and any other terms and conditions that apply. Of course, there are likely going to be unforeseen issues not covered by the scope of work. The scope of work actually has to make allowances for these sorts of things. Many projects, especially those being done in older homes, have a percent of the estimated budget dedicated as a contingency. This is the most common way of dealing with this. If that contingency isn’t enough, this is when the scope of work helps protect the homeowner by not allowing for cost overruns unless authorized by the owner.

You’ve probably seen on many remodeling shows how something will come up and the contractor has to discuss modifying another part of the project in order to keep it on budget. This is actually because there is a scope of work governing the project. Without having this contractual protection, you could suddenly find yourself spending more money before you even realize what is happening.

So why is it best to have a scope of work? It acts as protection for both the homeowner and contractor, as well as any other parties involved, that the project is being executed as promised. Without the scope of work, there become gray areas that can lead to problems on both sides. By having a written, legal agreement, the likelihood of any potential problems is reduced by leaps and bounds. So if you’re working with a contractor, make sure that they follow up with a scope of work before work begins. You’ll be happy you did.