Home Remodeling & Design Blog - Long Island NYC

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Why are some tiles more expensive to install than others?

Of course, one should be educated in purchasing tiles. From the point of view of a designer, I love to select and design a beautiful pattern of tiles, particularly for bathrooms and kitchen back splashes. However, from the point of view of a contractor and the client, the cost may become an important factor in the design.

The pattern and size of the tile can increase the cost of the total job making it more expensive.  Let’s consider a bath designed with small 1x1 or 2x2 inch mosaic tile or multi shape small tiles.  To install such small tiles is time consuming, in particular, when there are many corners or different heights, windows, etc.

The same is true for a kitchen back splash. These gorgeous small tiles are not only difficult to install, but grouting them takes a lot of time.

Cutting around angles and hard to reach areas can affect the difficulty of installation and thus the cost as well. An experienced skilled carpenter would be necessary to make the intricate cuts to keep the pattern from looking chopped off or off center. A great deal of planning to lay out the pattern is another step that must be taken.  These elaborate patterns take a great deal of time and skill which adds to the cost of installation.

Another example is using an 8.5” square tile for a kitchen back-splash. The typical height of the backslash between the counter and under the cabinet is 18.25”. If you have a tile such as the 8.5”, you must buy an additional tile for the height which can be costly if the tiles are expensive and/or the back-splash is very long.

The placement of outlets in back-splashes or walls of tiles must be considered. The electrician may want to place an outlet anywhere.  The tile installer must be involved in the placement of the outlet to fit symmetrically in relation to the tiles.

IN CONCUSSION BEAUTY CAN BE COSTLY. SELECTING TILE SHOULD BE CAREFULLY DISCUSSED WITH THE DESIGNER. THE DESIGNER MUST BE TECHNICALLY FAMILIAR WITH THE INSTALLATION. DISCUSSING IT WITH THE TILE INSTALLER IS A PLUS.