Things to consider when choosing countertops

April 11, 2018

A countertop used to be a work surface. As the kitchen has evolved into a stylish showplace, the countertops have become a major contribution to the look of your kitchen and the performance of this work surface. Here are some things to consider when choosing countertops. The most common choices in today’s kitchens are granite and quartz countertops. These stone surfaces provide durability and lasting beauty. There’s a seemingly endless spectrum of colors and patterns so you can certainly find the right piece for your vision. Granite vs. quartz: What’s the difference? Granite is a natural stone that is mined, cut, and polished into large slabs. It is resistant to heat but as a stone, it’s porous, which makes the countertop susceptible to stains. Granite is also very strong but can be chipped with a hard blow. Because they are not manufactured, no two slabs of granite will be identical. You can choose the color and pattern that you like but you will not see the same details in your countertops unless you pick an actual slab. Quartz is mostly stone. It’s made of 95 percent ground quartz that is blended with 5 percent polymer resin to bind it. The material is harder than granite but can be damaged by a hot skillet or pan. It looks and feels like stone and presents two distinct advantages over granite.
  1. While granite needs to be reson-porous, solid surface that does not require resealing.
  2. Unlike granite, quartz is manufactured, so you can order a color and pattern and receive what you expected.
The bottom line on countertops Price-wise, the two surfaces are fairly comparable, depending on the particular quartz or stone and thickness you choose. The standard thickness for quartz or granite countertops are 2cm (3.4”) and 3cm (1 ¼”). The 3cm thickness is more common, partly for durability but also for the more interesting profile you can gain on the countertop edge (e.g., bullnose, beveled, pencil, and ogee). At Ideal Homes, homeowners frequently invest more in their countertops, because of the beauty and durability that quartz and granite provide over laminate surfaces that will need to be replaced much sooner. One of the most popular choices we’re seeing is a stone surface that looks like Carrera marble. The intricate veining pattern in this natural white stone is truly eye-catching. However, marble stains and chips more easily than granite or quartz countertops. If you’re committed to Carrera marble, let us show you granite and quartz that achieves the same distinctive look! As you’re planning the countertops for your kitchen, also consider the counter heights. We’re see a growing trend away from the standard counter height of 36 inches and moving up to the bar height of 40” to 42”. This elevated counter height makes for a more accommodating workspace for many people. We’re seeing the same upward movement in bathroom vanities and countertops. The design professionals at Ideal Homes can help you make the best choices for your countertops, cabinets, and other details in your new home. Browse our gallery of kitchens for a sampling of Ideal Homes’ designs. Also look at our floor plans, new home communities, and currently available quick move-in homes throughout the Oklahoma City metro region. We’re a home builder with a long history of working closely with our customers, so contact us to get started.
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