A contractor is installing tile in the first floor of my house. The floor plan is open, with the living room and kitchen separated by a wall that spans a portion of the floor. The installer laid tile in courses on the 'north' end of the wall, then continued to lay going 'south,' where the wall divided the area into two rooms. At the 'south' end of the wall, the grout lines don't line up. (See diagram.) Is this acceptable, or should I tell my installer to do it over? enter image description here

  • 2
    Can you send real pic?
    – user101687
    Jun 14, 2019 at 2:38
  • Up to you. You are paying. I would hope that the contractor could and would agree that the anomalous alignment is truly undesirable and correct it, but .... that isn't for us to negotiate.
    – noybman
    Jun 14, 2019 at 2:38

1 Answer 1


This is indicative of a poor initial layout, perhaps due to inexperience. An experienced tile setter takes note of the areas where defects (like grout lines that can't line up, small or thin cuts, discolored tiles, etc.) would be most visible and makes sure things are perfect in those places, hiding the inevitable problems elsewhere.

If the tile had been properly laid out before setting it, the lines would be perfect across the open areas. Small differences in tile spacing are normal but are normally hidden by "pinching" or "spreading" the grout lines in places where it won't be noticed.

should I tell my installer to do it over?

  • I would, or I would insist on a significant discount due to lame installation then hide it with an area rug or something...

This is an example of why you should hire reputable contractors who are not shy of providing references, or hiring out of the local guild. You get what you pay for sometimes...

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