Anyone Use Granite Transformations?

javgatJune 11, 2008

Hi All,

My husband & I are planning an entire main floor renovation & the budget seems to be blowing at the seems. Or rather, we keep adjusting it. It's come to the point we can no longer adjust it & what will get sacrificed will be our granite countertops. I've come across a company called Granite Transformations which basically is hollowed out granite that gets installed right overtop your old contertop. To be honest, havent checked them out as yet, but curious to know if anyone has looked into it, used them or know of anyone who has. What are your impressions of the product? They are available in both U.S & Canadian markets.

Thank you very much,



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My daughter was considering granite transformations for her kitchen. She lives in Charlotte and was able to actually go to a showroom in Charlotte and look at the product. She said it looked so cheap, boxy squared off edges, it's basically a granite slip cover that goes over your existing countertops. After doing further research she encountered many complaints about the product online. The product is only as good as it's substrate, which means if you're putting it over a product that is already failing you're setting yourself up for disaster. She also said that cost wise it wasn't a whole lot cheaper then slab granite. You'd save the cost of demo in your kitchen because the product goes over your existing countertop. But many people can demo their own kitchens, and save that cost anyway. My daughter decided to go with slab granite. She said the only advantage at all to the granite transformations was that it could be done quickly, one weekend. No waiting around for the granite to be templated and then cut and installed. But the product itself is not worth the convenience factor.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2008 at 10:52AM
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There was a thread on this about a month ago that you can search. I posted because my neighbor has it, and IMO it looks fake. She was thrilled that it only took 1 day to install, but granite often takes only 1 day to install. It also changes the countertop height, so cooktops might need to be reinstalled.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2008 at 11:05AM
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Hello. I have recently installed counters from that company and am very thrilled with the results. I carefully considered Granite and other materials and chose this one because of its appearance (better than than all the quartz counters IMO, especially in the Tropical Brown range I wanted), zero maintenance, price and Eco friendliness. There are several points that I think you need to understand, however, which may affect your decision. Firstly, it is not at all "hollowed out granite". It is a product called Trendstone which has been made in Europe for many years; it is made only of Granite which has been crushed and reformulated into large slabs with a small amount of resin. This makes it very consistent, thinner and lighter than the equivalent color granite slab. This lightness and small degree of flexibility gives me more security ( living in Earthquake zone) and applications where a 10 ton slab is not optimal ( wood floor). Because it is almost impervious to scratching and doesn't need sealing I am happy; I hate the periodic maintenance of the granite slabs I have in my bathrooms. I love the look of the Tropical Brown; I have a modern kitchen and I wanted more consistency and finer specks, but not to the point of the fake look of most Quartz counters; my Tropic Brown just looks like a finer pitched Granite with all the color variations. If you don't want that traditional "swirly" look, then this is the perfect middle ground. I have a new kitchen remodel, so they started with plywood as a new installation. I have a "Demi Round" edge which is unique to the store I purchased from ( Laguna Hills CA) and it looks far better than the sharp edge you see on most of their installs; I highly recommend you check it out. Finally the price is not so cheap; it is like low-mid granite but because of the consistency and large slab size they can use scraps more effectively and fewer of them so I think you can come out ahead. One more thing... I really love the fact that in Europe they use this product because it is made from crushed, small pieces to reuse the scraps into a beautiful slab- it is a smart, eco friendly way to avoid depleting the supply and wasting material.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2008 at 11:11AM
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If budget is the main reason you're considering this material, then walk on by. It's not budget friendly. Laminate is budget friendly, and then in a few years you can upgrade to whatever real stone countertop you're drawn to.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2008 at 11:22AM
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If budget is a concern, go with prefab granite. I have seen some gorgeous colors in prefab at almost laminate prices! ubatuba, kashmir white, baltic brown etc. I think you can get a 2x8 prefab counter for $200. If you do not have seams, you can go the installation yourself. Cut a diamond blade grinder to cut the counter to length...

    Bookmark   June 11, 2008 at 12:01PM
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I priced Transformations when I was getting ready to replace my counters. I actually like the material very much. However, price wise, slab granite is a no brainer. I don't know how Transformations stays in business. They are not competitive.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2008 at 12:25PM
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Thank you all for your responses! The commercials for this company sure are convincing this is the next latest & greatest thing since sliced bread. I'm not familiar with Pre-fab granite & will do a search on it. We did choose a laminate, Pionite in the Frederick colour. Still hoping that with some elbow grease and ingenuity, we can still manage a granite counter. :-)

Thank you so much once again for your information.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2008 at 5:00PM
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We just finished our kitchen and pantry using Granite Transformations and they installed the wrong color. It has a greenish hue and to me it looks like green formica. We still have the sample and it is clearly the wrong color. When they installed it my first thought was that is was green but I thought well maybe it will look different when it's all done. We are sick about it, hate our kitchen and paid $7200 to make our house uglier. They said that they would refund $1000 but the product is still the wrong color and $1000 won't make us hate it any less. They also said for us to change the lighting in the kitchen. We might as well live in the dark, how ridiculous. It is also supposed to be stain proof and there are stains every where. It is a terrible product and the owners seem to have no integrity what so ever. Extremely disappointed and we will make sure everyone knows it!

Here is a link that might be useful: That Home Site

    Bookmark   December 10, 2010 at 9:13AM
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Had them do a very large kitchen counter in Florida with recycled glass. Very few glitches. Product is beautiful and installation seamless. Of course I looked at the counter before it was installed and it was what we ordered. It went over a 10 yearold corian counter which was in perfect condition. Each location is seperate and some may be bad but you have to do your homework and that means not letting someone put in the wrong color. I am on here as we are considering them for our New Jersey house. Same product but a whole different franchise so I am doing my homework. Job was not cheap but does not look cheap. No cabinets destroyed when tearing out old countertops. That is a great risk with a total counter removal which requires a seperate contractor in NJ. The installers cleaned up very well with just some minor vacuuming. They did their cutting outside but that was Florida,warm and dry. the Final cutting is loud and very dusty. All friends impressed with the glass look.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2011 at 5:12PM
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*** BUYERS BEWARE *** A long read, but if you plan to do business with Granite Transformations (GT) of San Antonio, TX, please read. Some of it doesn't flow as well I had hoped, but you will get the gist, which is BUYERS BEWARE.

We've had just an awful and unfortunate experience with Mel and Jeanette Esperza - husband and wife team - of Granite Transformations in San Antonio, TX. We feel Mel has been deceitful in our transactions; I have emails that substantiate most of my claims. I've also had family members present during both home visits, one visit was with me and my 18 year old son, and the most recent was with my wife and 16 year old daughter - his demeanor, behavior and escalated voice during that visit lead to both my wife and daughter fearing the worst - he was eventually asked to leave our home. It began a couple of weeks ago when we contacted him to overlay our kitchen island. During our email transactions I stated to him we're interested in purchasing a new delta faucet, to which he replied "I found a delta pull down for 300.00 with my discount". We were sent a price estimate, which included the Delta faucet, and agreed to purchase. A few days later we met at my home for measurements.

During the meeting Mel stated he would install the new Delta faucet and "round" the granite edges for free; for safety reasons, all of our granite has rounded corners. In front of my son - who I introduced to Mel and was present for the entire transaction - he said "I will take care of that for you for free". My son and I both were amazed at the level of CS and extremely thankful. I signed the contract. I now feel that was deceitful business practice.

Later that day I spoke of his kind gesture to several of my colleagues. Then later that evening I researched the faucet model number he had annotated on the contract - the faucet was NOT the Delta upon which we agreed. The faucet listed on the contract was a 200.00 Price Pfister - not the 300.00 Delta. I contacted Mel through email and brought this to his attention - I asked for clarification and added that we discussed Delta in several emails (to include a pricing email from Jeantte which reflects Delta faucet for 300 + 25 tax). He responded with just the following comment: "If you found a Price Pfister GT534-CMS for $200.00, go ahead and order it and we will install it". He did not apologize for having me sign a contract that I believed included a Delta faucet, nor did he apologize for having me sign a contract that should have been be at least 100.00 cheaper, nor did he create a new contract. I responded and told him it was a surprise to find a different faucet on the contract, yet no mention from him, and no price adjustment. I also asked if we bought a faucet ourselves, should we now expect to pay 325.00 less - he replied and said yes, we can pay 325.00 less. Had I not researched the faucet model, would I have paid for the delta? I 100% believe we would have.

Island countertop was installed on 26 Sep. Installer arrived at 0900, but advised us that the overlay would not fit (yet Mel states later that he inspects all pieces before they leave the warehouse). Installers state they would be back in 'a couple of hours', which turns in to 4.5. No problem, they stayed late and finished the job. We told them they did a good job and we liked it - reality was they did an OK job and we DIDN'T like it (burned thru the "granite" in several places, legs were just glued on and not dried when they left - I touched the leg and it slid out from under the island). We don't feel comfortable addressing negative concerns with installers...we prefer to speak to the managers or owners. The installers stated to us that they couldn't get a hold of anyone, and that we should expect to hear from Mel the next day.

The edges are not rounded as Mel told me and my son that he would do. But Mel now claims that he stated to me that he would SOFTEN the edges. Mel denies telling me and my son that he would round the edges. Had he told me he would SOFTEN them I would have inquired on what SOFTEN means. Regardless, they are not rounded or soft - they are as if they are sawed through each corner's 90 angle overlay, creating a flat edge with two corners - nothing is soft or rounded. It turns out, after speaking to the boss - who also happens to be his wife - that they don't soften corners, they BULLDOG them (I think it is basically how they are now) and that the overlay granite is IMPOSSIBLE to round or soften - yet Mel told us he would round them. Had Mel been honest and told me upfront that they cannot be rounded, I would not have signed contract - we feel this was deceitful practice and a violation of the Consumer Bill of Rights - particularly "The Right to be Informed" AND was done so in an attempt make a sale.

Mel told us he would install the faucet, plus the installers UN-installed the existing faucet - we thought they would install the faucet but they informed us that they don't install faucets. After the overlay installation we did not pay the remaining balance as we were still waiting on the faucet install. Mel contacted me on 27 Sep and stated "Plumbing was not included or ever discussed". I then responded and quoted his email where he states he would install the faucet. My wife called Mel on 28 Sep to discuss all of these concerns and he told her that when he said he would install the faucet that he meant he would cut a hole in the granite for it. Again, we view this as deceitful practice and violating "The Right to be Informed". How many customers would think installing a faucet equates to drilling a hole for one? Drilling a hole and installing a faucet are certainly not one in the same to me or ANY of the 15 or so people with whom I've shared this story. Mel offered to reduce the price by 100.00 to cover the cost of the faucet install and agreed to meet her at our home to further discuss.

On 1 Oct Mel visited my wife and daughter at our home; she wanted to discuss some of our concerns. Mel became what appeared to be very angry...boisterous...raising his voice...and at one point started to approach my wife in a manner that scared her and my daughter. My wife had to ask him to step back, and eventually had to ask him to leave.

I spoke to Mel's "boss" regarding most of this, only to find arrogant, cold, empty, and argumentative responses. She "apologized" when I told her that Mel scared my wife and daughter, but it lacked any and all sincerity and she sounded like I was annoying her. She told me she would review all of the emails and call me that evening. She didn't call until the next day when she threatened to place a lien on our home should we not pay the balance of 697.00. I emailed her back and offered to split the final costs. I offered, but we are victims of deceitful and unruly business practice - I don't feel we owe them anything at all, let alone 697.00. I feel they owe us a complete refund as we feel we've been deceived and tricked into buying something for which we did not agree.

Mel emailed back and said not only are they NOW NOT going to discount the 100.00 we paid to have the faucet installed, that we now owe them the FULL 797.00 and that they "will go forward with our procedures to collect this debt". He has reneged on the 100.00 discount - this is par for course.

We are contacting multiple organizations that protect people in our situation. I have emails and witnesses Hopefully with the number of agencies we're contacting that someone SOMEWHERE can help us. We're also filing an incident report with a local department - Mel's behavior in our home must be documented.

Bottom line - buyers beware. Yes, I should have performed more research before hiring them - GT is blasted all over the internet - many of their locations are blasted. They keep saying "you signed the contract" and "we have a contract - you owe us", but emails and meetings after the fact supersede the contract imo and at minimum are recognized and honored as addendums to contracts. we didn't get what we ALL understood we were getting.

We will do our part to ensure consumers, agencies, departments, and organizations are made aware of our experience with GT during the past few weeks.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2012 at 8:21AM
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Circus Peanut

This sounds like an outfit where your satisfaction is entirely dependent on the particular local franchise.

DHDCF, my first recourse in your situation would be to go up the ladder to "Mel's" corporate boss with your complaint. With luck, they can help you resolve the issues so that one particular franchisee doesn't make their brand name look bad.

I'd be curious to see actual photos of this product from customers. A "granite slipcover" sounds extremely difficult to engineer.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2012 at 9:21AM
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when we bought our home in 2010 it was all done in granite transformations--kitchen and 2.5baths. I do not like it, it's very thick, and fake looking. Only slightly nicer than corian or laminate IMO. PO left us the bill for it in the home file--over $6000 (not a big house at all!) I could not believe she paid that much for the product!

We have since redone the kitchen and paid less than that for level 3 Typhoon Bordeaux slab granite. And have redone my boys bathroom in granite remnant for $500. Our master will be redone in granite remnant as well. Powder room-I may keep the granite transformations, because we are not redoing the room, and it's black, so it's not too bothersome!

Overall, I would stay away, it's pricey and not all that nice. Uba Tuba slab granite is way nicer and probably cheaper~~

    Bookmark   October 4, 2012 at 10:18AM
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it's crap. amazing that there is any market for it at all. find a good fabricator and get real stone.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2012 at 6:55PM
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A friend of mine has it and they think it's just dandy. I don't like it at all. The edge is thick and weird looking and it also raises the counter height.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2012 at 6:58PM
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I just got my kitchen renovated recently, my wife asked me to look for Granite contractors, at first I was hesitant because I worried of the prices, luckily I found an affordable countertop that suits the design of our kitcken. I then realized that Granite can be customized with finishes on the edges for an exquisite design that is friendly and safe. So if you are looking to install a countertop then your best bet is the granite countertop because it goes with any kind of house d�cor.

Here is a link that might be useful: Granite Countertop

    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 4:54AM
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I used them and regret it. They don't have much to choose from and their prices are not any better. I would say if you are a house flipper it might be appealing to you but otherwise there are so many other options out there. At the time they didn't have sinks, faucets, toilets or tubs and I ended up running all over town trying to pick them out by myself with no input about specs or needed details from them and no access to design showrooms I might have had with a KBD company. I'm not happy with it to this day and if I were rich I would tear it out. I was lucky to be able to trim some of the project and thank goodness I didn't just let them come in and slap that stuff all over everything in the master bath which is what they want to do. I ended up taking out the old jetted tub and doing a freestanding or else they would have just put that slipcover as one poster mentioned all over an old tub and charged me thousands. They are a franchise company so they subcontract everything out which I didn't know at the time so they are really just a middle man. I never saw the so called designer again after I signed the contract. They did send a project manager out here and he would come by for a bit in the morning and then leave the rest of the day so when problems came up he wasn't here and my husband and I were left to deal with it. In fairness, I used them early on so they may be better now with more choices and have their own things to choose from.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 6:27AM
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GT came by today to give us a quote. 38sq feet. $3000, includes "free"sink which has a price tagin their catalog for $750, keeping in mind I don't know of any stainless steel sink costing that much, at Lowes you can get a sink like that for $200. Since when is a SS sink cost that much? Answer: when they are trying to pull the wool over your eyes and sell to dummies.

Okay. So let's do the math, 3000/38 = something like $78/sq foot. My oh my I should just buy real granite as you get a whole lot more choice of pretty stone formations for the same price! How tacky to lay something over my existing counter! That just makes me sick but I was curious about the product. The choices were base. Nothing really pretty for the wow factor. Nothing high end looking at all. Color choices limited especially in the white/cream/gold families. Lots of gray though and burnt orange/copper colors.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 6:57PM
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Since when is a SS sink cost that much? Answer: when they are trying to pull the wool over your eyes and sell to dummies.

reminds me of the people who came to give us an estimate for refacing about 8 years ago. I could have done two entire new kitchens for what they were quoting.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 7:16PM
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Some things never changed. I looked into this option about 6 years ago. It was less expensive (and a better ROI) to get granite countertops. So glad I did.

    Bookmark   January 14, 2014 at 9:41PM
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