Kitchen Countertops: A Quick Guide | TGUC Financial
worktops Kitchen countertops are one of the vital elements that you should consider carefully. A countertop is something you’d need when you prepare fresh food every day. If this is the case, you’ll need to get a durable worktop that will last. The material and type of worktop you will choose for your kitchen is an important decision to make. Here’s a quick guide to help you decide whether you need to get a kitchen countertop or not.

The Price of Kitchen Countertops

kitchen countertops Kitchen worktops or countertops are often priced per square foot. Their prices may range anywhere from around $40 up to a couple of hundred dollars. This will depend on the material used and the size of the countertop you plan to get. The price of the countertop itself is not the only thing you must think about. The installation cost is another factor that will chunk a big part of your budget. Installation costs would cost around $10 up to $40 per square foot. So when deciding to install or replace a worktop in your kitchen, compute the total cost of the materials and the labor.

Common Materials Used for Kitchen Countertops

worktops You can choose from a variety of materials for your kitchen worktop. Luckily, there are affordable ones when you’re running on a tight budget.

Laminate

Laminate worktops usually have a wooden body. Laminated plastic material covers the surface making this one of the most affordable types of kitchen worktops. Since its surface is laminated plastic, it’s easy to clean and maintain. The downside is that you can easily scratch it if you’re not careful and the edges can chip off over time. When a laminated worktop becomes too worn out, you can’t salvage it anymore. You’d need to buy a new one and replace it.

Ceramic Tile

Another inexpensive countertop option is the ceramic tile worktop. The body can be made from wood or other materials. But the top surface is covered with ceramic tiles and grout. This may look beautiful and more elegant compared to a laminated worktop depending on how it was made. However, tile and grout can easily get stained. If you don’t maintain it carefully, you may end up with a stained countertop for many years.

Granite

Granite is more expensive than laminated and ceramic tiled worktops. You have different options to get a granite worktop:
  • Solid slab granite
  • Modular granite
  • Granite tiles
Any of these choices are pricey and would require professional installation services. But many homeowners consider this as a great investment as having granite countertops improves a house’s overall value. Granite is also considered a durable and heavy-duty material. This will surely last for years. However, it needs regular maintenance that mostly involves applying a special sealant. If you don’t maintain your granite worktop correctly, it will have ugly stains that are difficult to remove.

Marble

Marble is another expensive, but highly in-demand material used for kitchen worktops. But unlike durable granite, this material is much softer. This means that it could break and crack easily when you apply a great force to it. Also, marble is quite porous and would require regular sealing. This makes marble worktops a high-maintenance item in the kitchen. Still, many homeowners prefer marble countertops because of their elegant, natural veining. Having marble worktops increases your home’s value significantly.

Kitchen Countertops Maintenance

kitchen countertops Your kitchen worktop is a wide surface area that will surely attract bacteria and fungus. You’d need to constantly clean your worktop especially if you use it often. It’s best if your worktop doesn’t have any grooves or intricate embedded designs where bacteria can sneak into. The best worktop would have a flat surface without any grooves. If you choose to have ceramic tile worktops, make sure that you clean them more often. When you have granite or marble can absorb chemical cleaners easily if you don’t seal them regularly. Just to be on the safer side, use natural cleaning mixtures like vinegar and baking soda. When talking about sealing, it’s safer to assume that your granite or marble countertop would need sealing every 6 months or yearly. Some sealant products may suggest otherwise. Still, if you’d want to thoroughly maintain your natural stone countertops, it’ll be best that you do this once or twice a year. But to keep your countertops looking brand new, you just need to follow two simple rules —
  1. Wipe off any substance that may stain your countertop immediately.
  2. Always use a cutting board and don’t use your worktop’s surface for cutting, chopping, etc.
With these two simple ways, you can prolong the life of your kitchen countertops.

Kitchen Countertop DIY vs Professional Installation

kitchen countertops There are tons of videos online that show you how to install a kitchen countertop on your own. Countertops using any kind of tiles can be done by a crafty homeowner. However, the skills needed for seamless grouting require professional hands. Grouting that’s not done right can lead to a countertop that can easily break. Poorly-filled gaps can also be home to fungi, bacteria, and even tiny insects. This is why leaving the countertop installation to experts is still your best option. For kitchen worktops made with solid slab materials, you’d need some professional installation services.  First, the solid slabs would probably be made of natural stone and this would need extra care when handled. Second, you may not be skilled enough to know how to install them securely. One wrong move and you can watch your hard-earned investment go down the drain.

Make a Wise Investment on Your Kitchen Worktop

kitchen countertops Kitchen worktops are great investments for your kitchen. It not only gives you additional surface area to be more productive in the kitchen but it also improves the value of your home. This is in case you decide to put it up for sale in the future. This is why investing in your kitchen is a wise decision and this includes the worktop or countertop. Even though marble and granite are expensive and beautiful, these materials may not fit in every kitchen. You’d need some assistance from a kitchen stylist to make sure that you’ll pick out a material that will fit your kitchen’s overall look. Trying to save up some cash by cutting out the installation cost? This may not be a good idea. If your countertop isn’t professionally installed, it would definitely show. Your efforts to improve your home’s value can backfire if you don’t seek expert services for this. You just need to find the right people to do these jobs for you. You can try to ask for help from kitchen contractors who can contact licensed professionals for your kitchen remodeling project. Consider stretching your budget a little more than waste your materials by doing a poor DIY job.