We utilize many surfaces in our homes, the most being kitchen and bath countertops. Furthermore, they aren’t only the most used, but they’re also the most needed.
In your kitchen, you prepare food and utilize counter space for storing canisters and cookbooks for easy access. Additionally, you use countertops for unpacking your groceries. Need I continue? You get the picture.
And, in your bathroom, you need countertops for keeping your soap handy, as well as a place to set things down while you use them, such as your toothbrush, toothpaste, makeup and hair products.
So, what’s the best material to use for these multi-functional surfaces? Read, below, to start your research on the different kinds of countertops that are best for you and your family’s lifestyle.
Different Kinds of Countertops
There’s many different kinds of countertops to choose from:
Granite is a popular natural choice for million-dollar luxury homes, as well as small, average homes. Give your kitchen or bath an automatic upgrade into the “high end” category with its shiny good looks.
Additionally, the price of granite has decreased over the years, which makes it affordable for many who may not even have it on their radar due to limited budgets.
Put a hot pot or baking dish right onto your granite surface without a care. Find granite in thousands of colors and pattern combinations. Granite also adds resale value to your home (read my blog, “Home Renovations With Best Return” for more ideas to add value to your home).
However, granite is porous, so seal it regularly to avoid stains. Additionally, hire a professional to install your granite due to its heavy weight and propensity to crack if improperly installed.
Contrary to what you may think, quartz countertops are not solid slabs produced by quarrying. Rather, quartz is actually an engineered stone product. Quartz contains up to 93% quartz particles and other minerals that are shaped into slabs and are bound with resins.
Many companies created their own so-called quartz alternatives to granite and marble that are considered better-performing.
Consequently, quartz is available in even more colors than granite, and its non-porous surface resists scratching and staining. Because of this, there is no need for annual sealing.
The downside of quartz is its cost, which is less affordable than granite.
Like granite, marble is natural. Thus, no two marble slabs will be the same, which makes it a great choice if you want something unique.
Unfortunately, although marble is gorgeous, it’s porous and scratches easily. Therefore, it must be sealed regularly, as repairs are costly.
Marble is heat- and waterproof, which is a plus. Therefore, use this luxurious and pricey material on kitchen islands or smaller countertop sections only.
Solid Surface Materials
Materials with brand names like Avonite, Corian, and Swanstone are all “solid-surface materials.” These are man-made and consist of a blend of acrylic particles and resins.
These materials have been around for almost 50 years and are often made into integrated sink/countertop units. They were regarded as high-end years ago, but have since become a medium-tier, mid-range surface material.
These solid-surface materials are available in many colors and patterns. However, they’re moderately expensive and prone to damage from hot pans. Also, they’re fabricated by professionals and you cannot install yourself.
Brand names such as Formica, Wilsonart, and Nevamar are all laminates. These are plastic-coated synthetics that are easy to clean.
Laminates have a reputation of being a low-end choice compared to more premium countertop options.
However, laminates have recently seen a surge in popularity. This is mostly due to the many colors, patterns, and styles available that coincide with the retro-look used in mid-century modern kitchen designs.
Finally, laminates are relatively easy to install yourself. But, even though it’s easy to maintain, the surface can be scratched or chipped, and almost impossible to repair.
For more info about the surfaces described above, and additional choices, read here.
Whether you’re remodeling a kitchen or bath in your current home, or designing a brand new one, there are so many countertop choices available. I hope this article helped you get started on choosing the surface that fits your lifestyle and budget.
And, if you’re considering buying or selling a home in Florida, I’d love to help you. Contact me to schedule your personal appointment!
Phone: (386) 569-4998