Granite: Premier Choice for Kitchen Tops
One of the most important features in your kitchen is the countertop. There are many different materials to choose from when replacing worn out or damaged countertops. Granite offers unique characteristics that have made it a premier choice among homeowners who want to update their kitchen in Summerton.
Many people will admit that they love the look of granite but believe that it is out of their price range. While granite may have only been attainable for the rich and wealthy in the past, it has become much more affordable over the years. With many more producers around the world and improvements in quarrying and fabrication, granite has become an option for the average homeowner. Some variables that may affect the cost of your countertops include stone color, edge profile, and the size and shape of your kitchen.
Why Choose Granite Kitchen Tops?
There seems to be a big discussion about which of these two types of kitchen tops is better for today's kitchens which are focused more on the social aspect of meals instead of just the cooking part. Over the last few decades the way we view cooking and eating has changed dramatically. More than likely, the famous cookbook and TV personality Julia Childs had a lot to do with this change. She made cooking fun and enjoyable. It wasn't a very far leap to go from just cooking to preparing meals as part of the social event.
More and more kitchens are being designed with the thought that the dinner quests actually watch and interact with the host as she or he prepares the gourmet fare. The open kitchen design is becoming more popular where there is ample room for the guests to be a part of the kitchen scene and even help with the preparation if they desire. This means the kitchen tops of the kitchen have gone from being only functional to being part of the fashion statement of the entire home.
When it come down to it, both of these kitchen tops can give you good results and it really is a matter of personal preference. Granite is more popular now but that may change as tastes change.
Granite Kitchen Tops: Add Value to Your Home
As with most decisions in remodeling, the "one size fits all" just doesn't do it. There is no pat answer on which kitchen top material is best but this article should get you pointed in the right direction. Each kitchen top material has its own pros and cons so it pays to do your research before you make your final decision and pony-up the dough. Ultimately, it is a matter of personal preference but no matter which kitchen top choice you make, there are three main considerations that you will need before making your kitchen top choice: They are: Cost - Design - Utility.
I place these in this order for a reason: Your budget will ultimately determine the material choices you will have. Next is the design: Achieving your design / style goals can usually be achieved at all the various price points. The final choice is utility. These days, durability (like design) can be achieved through all kitchen top materials. Ok, let's get started:
Wood: Yes, you heard right "Wood". Most of us have seen "butcher block" island cabinets of a piece of butcher block incorporated into the kitchen top, but there is a whole new world of wood kitchen top solutions if you have the cash. Pricing on these kitchen tops make granite look like a bargain! If you want a "Stand-Out" kitchen, this will most certainly do it.
Cost: Prices (just for the materials range from $100 sq. ft. to $500 sq. ft.!
Design: The choices of wood species are extraordinary: Just to name a few... Cherry, Bamboo, Beech, Black Walnut, Canary, Hickory, Maple, Chestnut, Red Oak, Reclaimed Redwood, Teak, Zebrawood (among others).
Utility: Incredibly, this choice is quite durable. Other than re-oiling the tops every 9 to 12 months or so, there is very little maintenance. Waterproof: One supplier (Craft-Art) categorically states that all of their kitchen tops are "absolutely" waterproof. As well they are stain resistant, food safe, heat resistant and scratch resistant.
Granite: This is currently the most popular kitchen top on the market. Beautiful, durable and low maintenance sums-up this choice.
Cost: Affordability (or lack thereof) is the main issue with granite as you can easily spend $70 to $150 per square foot depending on the quality and scarcity of the stone. Other factors that determine cost is the thickness of the stone (2 or 3 centimeters widths) as well as the amount of pits and imperfections. There are typically 2 to 3 quality levels depending on which slab yard you go to. This can have a substantial impact on the final cost.
Design: Styles and colors of granite are plentiful. Some estimates are in the 3,000 range. You need only to go to a few of slab yards to see that "the sky is the limit" with regards to available choices.
Utility: Granite is very durable and holds-up well to heat. Although it is important to seal the granite a couple of times a year, overall care and maintenance is relatively minor.
Cost: Price points for stainless are reasonable however stainless steel comes in different qualities. It pays to go with the better qualities as the less expensive option has a tendency to scratch easier.
Design: Great for contemporary look but best if used in conjunction with another surface so that it does not become too sterile.
Utility: Very heat resistant and durable however will scratch with sharp objects.
Concrete: While not generally known, concrete is becoming a popular choice for kitchens... the counters and sinks are "poured in place" so they can achieve designs and styles not afforded by the other kitchen top materials. If you have an "irregular" kitchen shape, concrete may be a good choice
Cost: Equal to or more expensive than granite and engineered stone (in most cases) however depending on the style and amount of labor involved, it can get pricy.
Design: Since it is a poured product, you can get very creative with regard to shapes, color and flair.
Utility: Concrete is very porous but can be sealed. This material requires regular maintenance to reduce the chance of staining. Cracks and chipping are also possible if heavy or sharp objects are dropped on the counters.
Laminate: New laminate products have really changed the perception of the old Formica. New designs and an exponential increase in colors and patterns make it a great choice for the lower price point.
Cost: Hands-down the most cost effective counter material on the market today
Design: Multitudes of color and pattern choices.
Utility: Very strong with a high resistance to scratching and staining. Fairly resistant to heat however it can burn if pots or pans are placed on the surface when taken right out of the oven or from the cooktop.
Kitchen Tops: From Concrete to Wood
When choosing a granite kitchen top in Summerton, be sure to visit a few showrooms in your area. Find a provider who allows you to hand select and personally approve all materials being used. Be sure that you are working with an experienced installation expert. Ask about warranties or guarantees that they may offer their products and services. Take time and do your research. Granite is a big investment in your home that will last for many years to come.
Don’t forget to ask about Kitchen Kitchen Tops.