Oh no! Home Depot’s design countertops don’t fit my kitchen

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By Christopher Elliott

John Osman’s custom countertops from Home Depot don’t fit his kitchen. The company won’t fix it. What now?

Question

I need help with a countertop installation disaster. There’s been a complete disconnect between Home Depot’s design plan and its subcontractor, Precision Countertops.

The countertop for my sink side was made incorrectly. There was supposed to be a 12-inch overhang. The new countertops didn’t fit. I’ve contacted both Home Depot and Precision Countertops about the mistake, but neither company will fix it. Can you help? — John Osman, Seattle

Answer

Home Depot ought to stand behind its workmanship, even if it’s performed by a subcontractor. Indeed, the company promises to “provide the highest level of service,” which certainly suggests it will ensure your countertops fit. It also pledges to offer “excellent customer service” and to do the “right thing.”

Are you sure you were shopping at Home Depot? That doesn’t sound like Home Depot at all.

You forwarded the emails between you, Home Depot and Precision Countertops. The subcontractor insists he didn’t make a mistake, noting that his employee is “very detailed and meticulous.” A representative added, “Overhangs are not decided upon without confirmation with the client, and a series of sign-offs and illustrations that display the agreed to countertop layout.” (Here’s our guide to resolving your consumer problem.)

In other words, you had to agree to the changes.

Precision Countertops agreed to redo the counters at a discounted price. (Related: Home Depot can’t install my garage shelving. Can I get a refund?)

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So that left the ball in Home Depot’s court. The correspondence suggests it wanted Precision Countertops to handle this but was unwilling to take responsibility, even though you commissioned the work through Home Depot.

Here’s the thing to remember: Behind the scenes, there’s a financial relationship between Precision Countertops and Home Depot. I’m not privy to the details, but the company is probably paying a referral fee or flat fee to do business from the Home Depot location. So there’s some accountability, and it’s probably enshrined in a contract. The two companies can play “pass the buck” as much as they want to, but at some point, the buck must stop.

Home Depot should take responsibility

As far as you’re concerned, you were doing business with Home Depot — and that’s who should shoulder the responsibility. A brief, polite, appeal to one of the Home Depot executive contacts might have helped.

My advocacy team and I contacted Home Depot on your behalf and after some back and forth, it agreed to cover the replacement of your countertops.

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Christopher Elliott

Christopher Elliott is the founder of Elliott Advocacy, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that empowers consumers to solve their problems and helps those who can't. He's the author of numerous books on consumer advocacy and writes three nationally syndicated columns. He also publishes the Elliott Report, a news site for consumers, and Elliott Confidential, a critically acclaimed newsletter about customer service. If you have a consumer problem you can't solve, contact him directly through his advocacy website. You can also follow him on X, Facebook, and LinkedIn, or sign up for his daily newsletter. He is based in São Paulo.

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