Countertops are a defining feature in a kitchen or bathroom. The options available for worktop surfaces are so varied it is possible to get any look you want. Let’s look at the countertops options available from least expensive to most expensive, and discuss the advantages and drawbacks of each.
Least to Most Expensive Options
- Laminate countertop material is the cheapest option, is easy to find, offers a variety of colors but is least durable.
- Ceramic or stone tile is relatively inexpensive, moderately durable, difficult to clean and maintain.
- Butcher Block has a warm, natural look, durable but somewhat labor intensive to maintain, susceptible to moisture damage.
- Solid surface, originally marketed under Corian, looks artificial, wide range of colors, easy to clean, durable but prone to damage.
- Granite is usually the least expensive natural stone material, offers a variety of patterns and natural color variations, exceptionally durable and resistant to damage, easy to clean and maintain.
- Marble is susceptible to stains, even when sealed. Stays cool and is good for working dough, so a favorite of bakers. It gives a beautiful classic look, durable but troublesome to maintain for heavy use.
- Quartz is the best combination of engineered and natural stone surface. It is crafted of quartz chips and resin, looks man-made but offers a variety of colors, and very durable and easy to maintain.
- Soapstone offers a unique natural stone look which is enhanced with age. It is susceptible to scratching, cuts and the rougher surface can be problematic. It must be oiled to maintain its durability so maintenance can be an issue.
- Concrete is a custom creation so one of the most expensive options, highly versatile, excellent durability, the heavy weight requires some planning and careful placement.
- Stainless steel is also custom made and is the most expensive option, it has become a favorite of designers and chefs for its sleek modern look, ease of cleaning and maintenance, and longevity.