7 Dos and (Little-Known) Don’ts of New Kitchen Countertops
Whether you’re ready to make an investment in your home or simply grown tired of your current kitchen design, you’ll find that upgrading your countertop surfaces isn’t as easy as picking a sample and calling it a day. There’s a bit more to choosing the perfect options and features to meet your needs and design preferences.
A little knowledge can go a long way toward ensuring that the countertops you select to suit your lifestyle and elevate your interior design. Here are a few do’s and don’ts to consider when you’re upgrading kitchen countertops.
DO Take Accurate Measurements
This is the first step in any home upgrade or renovation project. When it comes to natural stone or engineered stone countertops, it’s particularly important to take accurate measurements because it will impact the size and perhaps the number of slabs needed, as well as the number and placement of seams.
Read “How to Measure Countertops in 4 Easy Steps”
This might not seem terribly important to you – until you find you don’t have enough material or you end up with an awkward seam in the middle of your food prep surface!
DO Look at Slabs in Person
These days, it’s easy enough to window shop online from the comfort of home, but viewing samples or even full slabs on a screen simply isn’t the same as seeing them in person. The same goes for looking at small sample sizes of stone in a showroom.
Before you splurge on a marble, granite, or quartzite countertop, make sure to visit the warehouse and choose your actual slab. With so many variations in color and pattern, you want to make sure you get what you expect so you can be happy with the final result.
DO Coordinate Samples
Whether you’re looking at countertop samples in a showroom or visiting a warehouse to pick your preferred slab, make sure to bring samples of other materials, such as paint color, backsplash tile, cabinet materials, flooring, and so on.
This could influence the countertop materials you’re interested in or the specific slab you choose. It could give you time to rethink other materials if you have your heart set on a countertop that doesn’t quite match with the other elements of your design.
DO Consider a Countertop for the Future
Upgrading your countertops with high-quality materials like marble, granite, quartzite, and quartz countertops are well-established ways to increase your home’s equity and style. If you are considering selling your home in the future, it’s important to factor in popular color countertop choices. Yes, bold countertops that elegantly match your existing aesthetic preferences is important, but if it means selecting a color that is outside the box of “normal,” you may want to go back to the drawing board and opt for something more neutral and versatile.
DON’T Skimp on Budget
Your cabinetry and countertops are the most visible and used elements in your kitchen design. There’s no denying that cabinets and countertops will take up the lion’s share of your budget, but there’s a reason – they form the foundation of a functional and appealing kitchen design.
If you want to save on backsplash tile, hardware, and fixtures, chances are you’ll find options that look good and function adequately. The same cannot be said for skimping on countertop materials. You’ll never be sorry you spent a little more on this durable and eye-catching addition to your kitchen.
DON’T Overlook Engineered Quartz
You might have your heart set on natural stone, like marble or granite quarried directly from the earth, but if you run a busy household full of kids and pets or you like to entertain large groups of family and friends, you might want to consider the practical benefits of engineered quartz.
While it’s not technically “natural,” engineered quartz does contain over 90% ground natural quartz that is bonded with resins and polymers.
This combination creates a non-porous surface that is food-safe and antimicrobial, an advantageous feature for busy households. It’s also resistant to damage like staining, scratching, etching, chipping, and cracking, and it’s incredibly easy to clean and maintain.
With engineered quartz, you’ll never have to seal it. You can use any all-purpose cleaner, although gentle soap and water generally works fine.
In addition, some quartz varieties look like marble and granite, so you can get everything you want in a strong, durable, and attractive counter surface. The only caveat? It’s not as heat resistant as natural stone.
DON’T Be Afraid to Ask Questions
When it comes to a home remodeling project, failing to ask the right questions can lead to extended timelines, increased costs, and disappointing outcomes. Never feel embarrassed to ask a question – it could save you a lot of time, money, and heartache in the long run.
If you’re ready to choose a new countertop for your kitchen, the professionals at Academy Marble & Granite are waiting to help. Start by checking out our portfolio for design inspiration!