If you are selling your home, one of the first rooms a potential buyer is going to look at is the kitchen. This is because it is the one room where you are going to leave most of your personality behind. This includes appliances, flooring, window treatments, and of course, the kitchen cabinets.
Kitchen cabinets can make your home look incredibly amazing or be the part of the house that turns everyone away. Cabinets can be refinished to look newer, but if the countertop is an eyesore, it needs to be replaced. Contemporary countertops offer a variety of solutions for any budget to instantly update the look and value of your kitchen.
Granite countertops are worth the money that you pay for them. Even the most modest kitchen will look transformed if you can afford to use granite. Because it lasts a lifetime, this is a feature that will give your home instant added value. The colors choices are exquisite and a granite countertop looks permanent and substantial. The two drawbacks are the expense and the maintenance.
Engineered stone is as beautiful as granite and just as expensive, but again worth the investment for the added value it brings to a home. Engineered stone is made up of 93% quartz particles and comes in a bigger variety of colors than granite. It requires lower maintenance and doesn’t need to be sealed every year like natural stone. Also, because it has a nonporous surface, it resists staining and scratching better than most other countertops.
A solid surface is just what it means: solid. Solid surface is a material manufactured by home improvement companies and unique in the fact that any scratches can be sanded out. It doesn’t fare so well in the stain department, but the amount of colors that solid surface countertops come in are almost endless. It still falls into the pricey category, but is seamless and still stain resistant.
Ceramic tile can be a great compromise if you really need a new contemporary countertop, but just don’t have it in the budget. The way you save money is by installing it yourself, but this isn’t a difficult project.
Ceramic tile comes in almost any color you can imagine, it is durable, and clean-up is easy. The grout can become stained, so try to stay away from white. Also, be careful when installing the tile. Make sure that it is level and even so that in the future the tiles don’t chip or crack.
Laminates, like Formica, are probably the most popular replacements for countertops because they are so cheap. However, they should only be purchased as a last resort.
If you buy you home and replace the countertops with laminate, by the time you go to resell it, the countertop will be stained and full of scratches. Also, be careful about the color. The choices here are definitely endless, but try to pick something neutral.
Wood or Butcher Block
Hardwoods counter tops like maple offer a warm look to a kitchen. Stains and scratches are fairly easy to remove, but wood can sustain water damage over time if it is not properly cared for. Wood countertops are available in a variety of styles and colors and aren’t as expensive as granite or natural stone.
There are many other countertop choices available like soapstone, stainless steel, marble, and concrete. Each one has its advantages and disadvantages. Making a choice for a new countertop should be based on added house value, price and durability. Just remember though, a kitchen countertop is one of the most important decisions to make when renovating a house.
Photo by Editor B