Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is Memorial Grade Granite?
Memorial Grade Granite is granite that is free of cracks, seems or faults that will cause it to fall apart over time. Memorial Grade Granite also will not discolor in the sun nor will it have a lacquered polish. All the polishing on a Memorial Grade Granite monument is achieved by using polishing bricks, starting with a course one and moving to a finer and finer brick ending with a buffing pad to bring out it’s natural shine.
2. How long has Vancouver Granite Works, Inc. been in business?
Vancouver Granite Works, Inc. has been in business since 1921. Until 1993, we were located at the corner of 5th and Davis across from Pearson Air Park. Currently we are located at 6007 East 18th Street.
3. How are the lighter colored areas on the stone achieved?
The lighter colored areas are textured. Generally those areas are “frosted” which means that we have removed the polish and applied a light coat of contrast to brighten the area.There are many types of textures that we have available, each one gives the granite a different look. You can see a variety of them in our showroom or in our memorial gallery.
4. Do you do bronze memorials?
Yes. We work with a variety of manufacturers to provide you with an abundance of options to tell your story. We also offer bronze attachments to granite monuments such as statutes, flowers, crosses and letters.
5. How do you clean a monument?
Please see our cleaning section of the web site HERE.
6. Do you serve all cemeteries?
Yes, we serve all cemeteries and all faiths. Actually, it is illegal for any cemetery to not allow a monument or marker into their cemetery so long as it meets their reasonable requirements.
7. The cemetery says they won’t be responsible for the monument if I purchase it from someone other than them. Will you stand behind your work?
Yes, we will stand behind our work due to any issues involved with the material or craftsmanship. However, if a cemetery breaks the memorial due to negligence on their part (i.e. running over it with a tractor and breaking it) they are responsible for it. It would be the same as if their tractor hit your car and damaged it. They are at fault and should repair the damage without charge to you.
8. The cemetery wants to charge me an outrageous amount to have an outside vendor to install my monument. Can they do that?
No. The only thing a cemetery can charge on an outside monument company is a reasonable fee for inspecting the monument after it has been placed. Courts have held that fee must be based on actual labor costs. Generally, $75 has been the maximum threshold. But whatever the cemetery charges for this, they must charge their own families the same charge.
Some cemeteries try to charge a fee per square inch of the foundation. This too is illegal according to Federal case law. If you would like more information on this, please contact us.
9. Why do monument prices vary so much?
The major reason is the material used. Different colors of granite cost different amounts depending on where they are quarried, how much granite they must pull from the ground to get one piece of Memorial Grade Granite and how far they must travel to reach us. Also, the finishes and textures chosen along with the size of the monument play a big part.
If you are price shopping, it is important to note what the exact color is, what the size and finishes are and what the design and texturing options you have chosen so you can compare apples to apples. We have seen a variety of families choose inferior granite and a poor design and a smaller monument because the price comes in a few dollars cheaper. A monument is the only item you will purchase that is supposed to last forever. You and your family should feel good about your purchase for years to come and not have to worry about it falling apart over time due to inferior materials.
We offer a FREE quote comparison analysis, where we will compare the quote you were given to our quote. We want to make sure you are comparing a Cadillac to a Cadillac and not to a Yugo.
10. Do you do your own work?
Yes, we complete the lettering and artwork on the granite monuments we design for you.
11. What is a Certified Memorialist ®?
A Certified Memorialist® is someone who has undergone hours of study, received continuing education and passed a rigorous 4-hour exam. They also have to continue to stay abreast of things in the industry and are re-tested every three years. The program is administered by the Monument Builders of North America, the national trade association for monument builders. Vancouver Granite Works has 3 Certified Memorialists® on staff.
12. I have my own design. Can you do it?
Yes we can. We can work off most any drawing or picture you bring to us. Depending on what format you provide this to us, there may be an additional charge.
13. Is it better to come to you instead of a cemetery or funeral home?
Generally it is better to come and see us. We have more options than you will see at either a cemetery or funeral home plus you will be talking to the people who will actually design, craft and install your memorial.
14. What kind of warranty do your monuments have?
We believe our monuments to be of the highest quality and craftsmanship you will find anywhere. Therefore, we back up all our monuments with our written warranty. It covers your monument from any defects in craftsmanship and materials for a period of 10 years from the date of purchase.
15. What is your delivery time?
Our delivery time on standard memorials is approximately 6-8 weeks. Custom memorials are approximately 10-14 weeks. If you have a date that you need a monument by, let us know and we will be able to confirm whether or not we can meet that date prior to purchase.
16. Why don’t you have prices on your web site?
We don’t have prices on our web site because everything we do is a custom work of art just for the families we serve. There are many different options that can vary the price of your memorial. No matter what your budget is, you can be assured you will be receiving the best value for your dollar.
17. I was told a granite doesn’t exist anymore for a monument I want to match. Is that true?
It could be, although more times than not it is because the company you are dealing with doesn’t want to work with the company that quarries it or doesn’t know what the granite color is called because they don’t have it on their color board.
We have been around since 1921 and have seen hundreds of different colors of granite. If the quarry is still open and actively producing Memorial Grade Granite, we can get it and match your monument.
18. Do you have a showroom?
We have the largest indoor and outdoor displays of monuments in the Portland/Vancouver area. It is important for you to get sense of size and finishes as well as the color so you will be happy with the monument when it is created. Looking at a little 3×5 granite tile doesn’t give the total picture of the granite. Visit us to see the many options available.
19. Do you ship monuments out of the area?
Yes, we can ship monuments out of the area. However, depending on where it is going, and how big it is, it may be better for you to use a monument in the local area where it is going. We are members of the Monument Builders of North America and can help you locate a monument company in the area of the cemetery.
20. Why should I come to you for a monument?
Besides offering the most artistic monuments, the most options and the best value in the area, we also provide you with the peace of mind that your monument will be an artistic tribute that will stand the test of time. We include names, dates, any of our sandblasted designs from our extensive library, endearment, a paper proof of the monument and back your monument with our exclusive warranty.
On top of that, our showroom has a wide selection of granite colors, monument styles and shapes for you to choose from. Our in house memorial designers will help you to bring together design and material for a monument that truly tells your life’s story.
We are also members of the Monument Builders of North America and Pacific Northwest Monument Builders Association and prescribe to their strict code of ethics. Three of our memorial designers have earned the coveted Certified Memorialist® designation.
21. Why should I purchase a monument before I need it?
There are several good reasons to purchase your monument before you need it. First, you save your family the wonder and challenge of determining what you would like and what story you would have wanted told. Second, you lock in today’s prices for tomorrow’s need. Third, you get to design a monument that tells the story you want to have told, spending the amount you think is appropriate. Lastly, you are making a decision with a clear head that is not clouded with the emotion that a death brings.To find out more information, click HERE.
We can create your monument and either store it or place it in the cemetery. Whatever you would like.
22. Do you have in-home consultations?
Yes, we can come to your home and show you some of the options available and talk over with you your desires for the story you want told. However, we do encourage you to come to our showroom to see all the options available, to touch the different granites and textures and to get a feel for the monument and the color of granite you like.
In some cases it is either not possible or impractical and we would be happy to come to your home or meet you at the cemetery to discuss your monument or marker choice. Please contact us us to make an appointment.
23. What is your delivery area?
We typically deliver from Centralia, to Eugene, from the coast to The Dalles. We occasionally travel outside those areas. Please contact us us for more information.
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