Many experts agree that the most cost-effective way of upgrading a kitchen is by replacing kitchen countertops. Even if they are not totally gone, you can justify the expense if you choose the right materials. Natural stones countertops or quartz countertops increase the efficiency of your kitchen and the value of the home, and they last for a very long time.
A complete remodel would be ideal, of course, but if you have a small budget, replacing kitchen countertops is the next best thing. However, it will still cost you some money. Countertop replacement costs average about $2,907 for 100 square feet, although the range is quite large depending on many factors. You can spend anything from $400 to $12,000.
These factors include the purchase of materials, demolition of the existing countertops, replacement or rerouting of plumbing and electrical wiring, construction of the support, fabrication and actual installation of the new countertops, and so on. Here is a quick guide to the costs of replacing kitchen countertops using popular materials.
Natural stones countertops
Durability is key when it comes to kitchen countertops, so natural stones are the natural choice for your new ones. You would know this if you have had to make do with flimsier or less durable materials such as wood and laminates.
These materials may look fine, but you are not going to get much work out of them. They crack, chip, peel off, and otherwise sustain damage quite easily. Bacterial growth is also a potential issue. Natural stones such as marble, granite, slate, and soapstone are going to last much longer without needing any special treatment.
Granite is especially popular with homeowners as it is the most durable of all natural stones for kitchen countertops. It is heatproof, stain-resistant, scratch-roof, and very beautiful as well. Since granite is the abundant stone in the world and comes in a wide variety of colors and patterns, you are sure to find a slab that fits your design requirements.
Granite comes in slabs specifically designed for use as kitchen countertops. In many cases, you may not even have seams, and it does not grout lines. Granite also has a level of porosity, so sealing it once is usually all you need to keep it stain-resistant. The cost of installing granite countertops per 100 square feet is anywhere between $3,000 and $4,500.
Marble is also a popular material because of its durability, but particularly because of its elegant beauty. It does need a bit more care than granite, but not as much as most people think. Marble also comes in a narrower range of colors, with the most common being white, but that is not usually a problem for people that love the look of marble countertops. To be safe, you might want to consider using marble for countertops used less frequently or exclusively for making pastries. In terms of cost, you will pay slightly less for the same countertop size than you would for granite. Granite and marble hold a large assortment of edge treatments and finishes very well, so you can easily make them more interesting by playing with those in your design.
Soapstone is also an excellent option if you want something that will resist stains and heat, but you do not want granite or marble. It tends to come in shades of gray that darken and achieve a greenish cast given enough time. The slab sizes are typically smaller than for granite and marble, so you may have to deal with seams if you have long countertops.
The only problem with some types of soapstone is that it is quite soft, more than marble, so it scratches easily. Soapstone is also relatively expensive, costing between $7,000 and $12,000 for a 100-square foot area.
Slate is also stain-resistant like soapstone, but more durable. They come in rather gloomy colors, including black, gray, and brown countertops, with highlights of brighter colors such as green, red, and blue. Slate countertops are about as expensive as soapstone, and you should make sure the installer rounds off any sharp areas. Slate does not accept a polished finish, so keep that in mind.
Engineered Stone Countertops
Natural stones are ideal for most kitchens, but engineered stone have some merits. Engineered stone is a man made material that usually mimics natural stone, so it is a great option if you are unable to find natural stones that will match your existing kitchen style and design.
Engineered quartz is at least 90% of natural quartz, which makes it very durable. It is non-porous and available in a wide range of colors and designs, and some designs are nothing like natural stone, so you have your choice. In terms of cost, the range is from $5,900 to $14,000 for 100 square feet, depending on the brand and quartz stone design you choose.
You can also choose solid surface countertops, which cost less than quartz stone. These are also engineered stones available in some beautiful colors and designs. Solid surface was a popular choice when it first hit the residential market, but its tendency to scratch, stain, and sustain heat damage soured many homeowners towards it. It is quite affordable, ranging in price from $2,200 to $5,000 for a 100-square foot area, but it might not be the best choice for kitchen countertops.
Replacing your kitchen countertops is a great way to upgrade your kitchen at a fraction of the cost of a total remodel. You can maximize your investment by choosing beautiful materials that will last you a long time. Currently, your best options are granite, marble, and quartz, and we can help you achieve your dream kitchen if you choose any one of those.
KNC Granite has a large inventory of granite and marble slabs, and is an authorized retailer of quartz countertops from the top brands in the business. These include Cambria, Caesarstone, Silestone, and DuPont Zodiaq, all of which come with manufacturer warranties. You can check actual slabs of natural stones at our showroom in Lanham, Maryland.
We service the cities of Baltimore, Annapolis, Bethesda, Rockville, Washington DC, Alexandria VA, and Arlington VA, and are experts at fabricating and installing kitchen countertops or bathroom vanities. We also specialize in kitchen remodeling and bathroom upgrade projects, delivering on time and on budget.
Give us a call or email us for your free in-home consultation and quote!