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Planning a kitchen remodel can be an exciting yet overwhelming time. Plenty of ideas online inspire homeowners, and local kitchen design showrooms allow homeowners to see the options in person.
But the number of options available when remodeling a kitchen can confuse and overwhelm people. Continue reading for a comprehensive guide to countertops that will impress everyone.
When comparing different countertops, always start with functionality. Consider whether the kitchen is busy with many people cooking meals and making snacks. Is there a lot of entertaining happening in the kitchen? Homeowners who use their kitchen a lot should choose a countertop more scratch and stain-resistant.
The avid baker may choose granite or marble since these are perfect for baking. Homeowners who entertain often may want to extend the island countertop for more seating. Choosing the same countertop material might make sense, or a contrasting material may be a better option.
Because countertop materials come at all different prices, estimate how much countertop material the kitchen needs and how much this will impact the overall kitchen budget.
Homeowners should examine the shape and size of the kitchen and whether they will expand the kitchen or add an island. These things will affect costs.
Homeowners should choose quality countertops and plan to maintain them properly so they will last. Sometimes, it is possible to find an alternative, less expensive material that is just as stylish and functional. Do plenty of research before deciding on a material.
Some countertop materials require more maintenance than others. Materials like marble and limestone are more porous and homeowners must seal them every year. Wood countertops need an oil application every year. Some materials handle heat, spills, and grease splatters more than others.
Kitchen cabinets are one of the first things to be seen when someone walks into a kitchen. Because the choices for color, texture, shape, and material have such an impact on the design style of a kitchen, homeowners need to choose carefully.
One of the most popular countertop materials is quartz. It is a manufactured stone made of bits of natural quartz made together with resin and then made into big slabs.
Quartz is very durable and easy to maintain, which is one of the reasons that it is so popular. Many patterns and colors of quartz are available to homeowners, making it a popular choice for many kitchen styles. Quartz usually costs between $50 to $150 per square foot.
Quartz requires little to no maintenance and is scratch, heat, and stain-resistant. It does not have a porous surface, and it does not need sealing. With all of the color and pattern options, these advantages make it a great kitchen countertop choice.
Unfortunately, high-end quartz countertops are typically more expensive than other materials. Some engineered quartz does not resist heat like other materials on the market. Some designers feel quartz is not as dynamic as natural stone since it does not have bold and decorative patterns.
Granite is always a classic choice for kitchen countertops. Granite is a natural material with a speckled look. Because every piece is different, each kitchen has its unique look.
Granite is durable and heat resistant and comes in many color options to support various kitchen decors. Granite usually ranges from $50 to $120 per square foot. The shape and quality of the cut will affect the cost.
Marble countertops instantly give a kitchen luxury and elegance. Marble is a natural material that comes in neutral colors and often makes kitchens feel more formal.
It is heatproof but can be stained. It needs to be sealed and maintained well. Many bakers like to use marble countertops in their baking zone in the kitchen.
One drawback to marble is that it is not as durable or stain-resistant as other materials. It will not keep its shine for long and scratches more easily than other countertops. Marble tends to be more expensive than most man-made countertops, usually running from $75 to $200 per foot.
Concrete countertops are heat and scratch resistant. These countertops have a unique style in a customized shape and are perfect for farmhouse, rustic, or industrial-style kitchens. They can also provide a sleek, minimalistic look in a kitchen.
Because homeowners can give them different finishes, textures, or colors, they may be designed to fit other kitchen styles, too. While concrete may crack, homeowners can repair the cracks.
After sealing, concrete is very durable. Concrete is less expensive than many countertop options, costing between $50 and $100 per square foot.
Downsides to using concrete countertops include the fact that homeowners must periodically reseal them. They also stain more easily from oil, wine, and other liquids. Homeowners who want to customize their look will also have to pay more for it.
Soapstone is perfect for adding warmth and beauty to a kitchen. Soapstone comes in colors ranging from gray to white with marble patterns. It is hard-wearing, strong, and heat-resistant.
Its non-porous surface makes it easy to clean and maintain, and it resists acids well. Homeowners can use sandpaper and mineral oil to remove scratches if they form. Unfortunately, soapstone is often prone to chipping.
Butcher block countertops have always been a popular look. Butcher block is one of the lowest-priced materials available in many styles. Butcher block is easy to refinish, and homeowners can usually install it themselves.
The natural wood look gives a kitchen charm and warmth, but the butcher block has many limitations. Homeowners must reseal it every once in a while. It can get dents, stains, burns, and scratches easily. Its porous surface is also more susceptible to liquids.
Stainless steel can make a statement in modern or industrial-themed kitchens. It provides a polished commercial look and can brighten a room because of its reflective qualities. Stainless steel ranges from $60 to $100 per square foot and is durable. It resists bacteria, stains, and heat.
Unfortunately, stainless steel can be pricey and often gets dents and scratches. Fingerprints easily show on stainless steel countertops, and they can be challenging to keep looking clean.
With the wide range of countertop materials, it is easy to see why research is essential. Touching, feeling, and seeing the materials in person can help homeowners make the best decision for their kitchen remodel.