Homeowner FAQ

Do you sell directly to homeowners?

Yes!  We work directly with homeowners all the time: helping them specify, detail and order exactly the right slate for their needs.

How do we get the slate?

Smaller orders of tiles can be shipped via UPS, everything else gets shipped commercially via LTL on pallets.  A forklift may be needed to unload.

Is slate appropriate for kitchen countertops?

Yes, our slates from Vermont and Virginia make excellent kitchen countertops.  They are stain-resistant and anti-bacterial.

Why is my local fabricator trying to talk me out of slate for my kitchen countertops?

Because they do not have experience with Vermont and/or Virginia slate.  Perhaps they had a bad experience with another type of “slate”.  Slate is not as common as marble and granite, and it is not as easy for them to procure.

Why is it hard to get large sizes of slate?

Slate deposits contain natural seams and joints which limit the sizes that can be made.   Also, slate’s natural cleft finish (hand-split with a hammer and chisel) becomes increasingly difficult to produce with larger piece sizes.

Is your slate better than the Brazilian, Indian and Chinese slates we see at Home Depot and most tile retailers?

Most definitely yes!  Some of these “slates” are not even a true slate from a geological standpoint.  They are what is termed a mudstone, meaning they were not metamorphosed (heated and compressed to the same degree as slate).  This has a big impact on how they perform:  most are quite porous and many delaminate with time.  Our Vermont and Virginia slates are among the best in the world.  One way to decipher a good slate:  Is the slate used for roofing?  Is it ASTM Grade S-1?  Roofing slates are tested for absorption, strength and acid resistance.  Only the best slates test ASTM Grade S-1.

Why is it better to work with Vermont Structural Slate Company?

  • We only quarry slate in Vermont and Virginia, two regions known for producing some of the best slate in the world.
  • Because we quarry and fabricate ourselves, we control production at every stage.  We have the experience, mindset and specialized equipment to produce the highest quality slate projects.
  • We have been producing slate for over 160 years.