So many choices, only one kitchen. How do you decide what type of countertop to use in your kitchen? While budget is usually the ultimate deciding factor, durability and design are also important factors to consider.
Marble. Marbles offer stunning veining and are popular in today’s kitchen designs, offering a high-end look and timeless appeal. Its porous nature can make staining an issue, so it must be sealed regularly.
Polished Granite. Polished granite is a top contender for many homeowners, adding a high-end finish to your kitchen. Because granite is a natural material, it has wide variations in color and patterns. It also requires a little maintenance to keep it in prime condition. This includes wiping up oils, wine, acids and other stain-causing substances quickly. As with marble, it should also be sealed once a year.
Quartz. Quartz countertops are one of the most maintenance-free options available. Engineered quartz is resistant to stains, scratches, heat and impact. Unlike natural stone that has to be sealed, its non-porous material doesn’t need this step. Quartz is available in a variety of colors and patterns. Granite and quartz are comparable in price.
Stainless Steel. Perhaps the most hygienic countertop available, stainless steel inhibits bacterial buildup. Stains wipe off with a cloth and soap. Stainless steel offers a modern industrial look.
Wood. Wood countertops are great for a cottage look. Some homeowners opt for a butcher-block island as a design accent to their non-wood countertops.
Laminate. Laminate countertops are generally the most budget-friendly option. Patterns and colors can closely resemble quartz and granite. Laminate can easily stain, so liquids should be wiped up quickly. Hot items cannot be placed directly on a laminate countertop.
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For more information on kitchen remodels, be sure to read A Kitchen Remodel on a Budget.