What Builders Think of the Notion of "Builder's Grade"
A common rant is how dreadful the basic trim installed by a builder is. In this common lament, the minimal size and unremarkable profile of basic moldings are referred to disparagingly as "builder grade." Yet builders build what the homeowners want or are willing to pay for. As a builder of things, I would call this "Homeowner grade," were it not offensive. You see, homeowners and builders come in an endless range of tastes and budgets. My version of "builders grade" is cabinet head casing style with no less than 9 pieces of trim around a single side of a door opening--some have 15 or more pieces--per side (vs. 3). I can install simpler trim if I must, or far more elaborate, if that is what is called for. More involved trim is not actually that much more expensive to produce, for those who are good at it. Sometimes people have a false sense of economy and settle for the mediocre, when excellence is actually a better value. Save until you can afford what you really will like. This a simple encouragement to rethink what builders are about.