10 Countertop Designs and Materials for Kitchen Remodels
Kitchen countertops are a significant decision when undertaking a kitchen remodel. There are many considerations to weigh such as cost, sustainability and design. In today’s competitive residential real estate market, updating your countertops can often be a simple and cost-effective way to increase aesthetic appeal and your property value. Before heading to your nearest home improvement store, consider these 10 countertop materials and designs to consider before your next kitchen remodel.
Marble is a posh material that looks beautiful in traditional, luxurious or French country kitchens. This pricey countertop is waterproof and heatproof, but stains and scratches easily without professional sealing. With the hefty price tag, comes meticulous upkeep for gleaming marble countertops.
Butcher block is increasingly popular with its moderate cost and ability to warm up any space, especially farmhouse, contemporary or rustic kitchens. While butcher block is porous and risks water damage and stains, it’s easy to clean and you can choose from a plethora of colors and finishes to match your design.
Ready to try your hand at DIY countertops? Ceramic tile might be a good option, especially for contemporary kitchens. Since each section is installed individually, savvy homeowners can do this without a professional. Tile is an affordable option that’s reliable, strong and easy to maintain and clean. Keep in mind that tile means grout lines, which can sometimes stain.
A highly popular choice, granite requires little maintenance and is moderately priced, depending on the source and quality. Granite makes any kitchen design look polished and refined and often adds value to your home. This durable countertop comes in thousands of colors, so be sure to look at different options to find the one that best suits your kitchen aesthetic.
Quartz looks similar to granite, but is often more expensive. Like granite, quartz is versatile and works well in any design. Yet, it especially shines in traditional, Mediterranean-style and cottage kitchens. As quartz is a combination of natural and manmade stone, the surface is non-porous and stain, heat, scratch and impact resistant.
Perfect for modern and industrial kitchens, concrete counters create a great focal point in the kitchen. While concrete countertops carry a high cost, they are dependable and can be easily customized if you find yourself with unconventionally shaped counters. Concrete is highly porous, so it’s important to ensure that concrete counters are properly sealed (preferably with a heavy-duty, colorless and food-safe sealer) upon installation. These counters will also require maintenance sealing every one to two years.
The most affordable option on this list, laminate counters are an approachable project for the handy homeowner. Laminate comes in many color variations and is a conservative option for traditional kitchens. Yet, if you’re putting your house on the market, prospective buyers might not bite at these countertops as laminate is known for chipping and peeling easily.
Solid surface AKA Corian
A cost-effective option, solid surfaces are stain resistant and create seamless countertops. Great for farmhouse, traditional or contemporary kitchens, solid surface counters often look similar to granite or quartz, but at a more reasonable price.
A great look for old world homes and rustic kitchens, soapstone also adds a touch of character to modern designs. While this smooth surface is nonporous and stain resistant, it does require regular maintenance to avoid cracks or discoloration. Keep in mind that soapstone is slightly more expensive than traditional quartz or granite.
Aiming for your own cooking show? Moderately priced, easy to clean and heat resistant, stainless steel is a great choice for chefs looking for a modern or industrial look. It’s worth noting that these counters can dent and are noisy as you shuffle around the kitchen.
Happy choosing as you find the best countertop material to match your kitchen budget and design!