Most people keep the cost of something at the forefront of the equation. Especially as a developer, it's not your personal home so why invest in quality...
I'm not here to argue about quality...
That is a different conversation all together.
I just want you to pause before you start googling and getting all your fixtures from China at a fraction of the cost...
If something goes wrong AND IT WILL, who will you talk to? The person on the other end who doesn't speak english. The customer service which keeps rerouting you to another person... that is, when they do answer your email or call to tell you how apologetic they are.
During construction, no matter how careful YOU are, there is always items
that come in damaged
or mixed up - and now you have chrome instead of brushed nickel
or it got delayed - and now its holding up the project.
When you work with a vendor... a lot of issues will be resolved very quickly because
1. You have someone who will take your call and deal with the issue at that moment.
2. They stand with their product. If something is of inferior quality, they will not sell you it. They will spend time and resources to get you an alternative within your price range.
3. They will match other prices
This specific tile vendor I don't use too often... for whatever reason. Though in this case we had placed a small order for accent tiles and it had been delayed. We were ready for install and on a crunch for time. I called my rep there and she said. "We've got you. I'll take it from another order that won't be here to pick it up for a while." We got our tiles and made our deadline.
However I think the biggest factor to be added into the equation is that a vendor will price match you. I do it all the time. It's not a secret. My vendors know I price match it online, with other vendors... Sometimes I send over a spreadsheet with total numbers of what they are asking for and what someone else is asking, like build.com or even home depot. They price match it without blinking.
Which is why I go back to them over and over again.
I get good prices. I get good quality. I get someone to talk to if something goes wrong.
So before you disregard my outdated advice of not jumping onto the internet bandwagon and ordering everything through amazon and build.com... Keep in mind way more valuable factors that should be added to your equation before you purchase.
OLD FASHIONED BUSINESS LOYALTY GOES A LONG WAY IN THIS MODERN WORLD.