When buying a home, you’re often stuck with one of two things when it comes to the kitchen counter. If the home is new, you usually end up with the builder-grade materials the home developer selected. If the home is older, you’re saddled with the passé materials of years–or even decades–past. This can pose problems if someday you hope to resell your home quickly and at a decent profit.
If you think that your countertop looks outdated, then there’s a fair chance that potential homebuyers would agree. Check out which surfaces are best left in the past, along with which materials make stylish contemporary replacements.
Outdated Countertop Surfaces to Update this Year
Out of all the rooms in a home, Trulia reports that homebuyers tend to examine the master bathroom and kitchen with the most scrutiny. If your kitchen counter is sporting one of the outdated materials listed below, it could make your home less desirable next to its competitors.
Tile reached its most recent spike in popularity during the ‘70s and ‘80s, which is one of the reasons why it tends to look out-of-date at first glance. When combined with mosaic backsplashes, tile can lend an Arts and Crafts-inspired charm to the right kitchen. However, this material can cause frustration from a practical standpoint.
Tile will not provide you with a smooth, even surface. What’s more, it is easy to chip compared to other materials. Additionally, the porous grout between the tiles can be challenging to keep clean, unstained, and sanitary.
Corian (designed by DuPont) was the first solid surface material to appear on the market. It was first sold in 1971 in only one color. The brand still exists and now manufacturers more than 100 colors. The material is stain-resistant due to its non-porous nature, a useful characteristic for a kitchen counter. This countertop type does have its downsides, though.
Because of its utilitarian nature, you’ll often find Corian and other solid surface countertops in more commercial and industrial spaces. Consequently, this material often looks more commercial than “homey” to a lot of people. In terms of durability, Corian countertops tend to be more easily damaged by hot surfaces than natural stone. It’s also more prone to scratches than surfaces like quartz and granite.
Laminate has been a widely used countertop material since the 1950s. It’s about half the price of granite, easy to maintain, and comes in a variety of colors and patterns. However, the solid colors can instantly make a kitchen appear out-of-date (particularly if the edges and seams are dark and distinct), and the stone patterns lack the texture and depth of authentic stone. When placed side-by-side, there’s no comparison.
Plastic laminate is also less durable than other countertops. Cuts and heat can easily damage it. Once something penetrates the laminate’s outer seal (which cannot be resealed), water can get into the material underneath. If your goal is to increase your home’s value with a remodeled kitchen, laminate counters might save you money in the short run, but in the long term, they may not give you the resale value you wanted.
2 Contemporary Options to Upgrade Your Kitchen’s Style
Refreshing a kitchen with an updated counter makes sense for multiple reasons. If you plan on staying in your current home, you’ll have a stylish kitchen to enjoy with a more durable countertop surface. If you plan on moving, the new counter will add value to your home and make it look more move-in-ready to homebuyers.
Whereas granite used to be a countertop surface owned by an exclusive few, this natural stone has taken the U.S. by storm with its beauty, durability, and classic sense of style. Granite is a hard, sturdy material, unlikely to suffer damage from basic, everyday use. It does need to be resealed regularly (usually every 6-12 months) to prevent staining, but otherwise, the stone only requires basic washing with soap and water.
What’s more, no slab of granite is identical to another. This means that your stone will be utterly unique to your home. A particularly interesting slab can even be likened to an art piece when used on focal points like a kitchen island.
Quartz has proven that it isn’t going anywhere any time soon. This manufactured material is even harder than granite, and because it’s non-porous, it’s highly resistant to staining and accumulating bacteria.
Quartz is also an incredibly versatile countertop surface due to its wide array of colors and patterns. Whether you prefer solid white or something that mimics the look of natural stone, there is a quartz option to suit your taste.
Wondering how much an upgrade to granite or quartz would be for your kitchen? Use our QuickQuote tool or call our design team at (804) 265-4751. Don’t forget to ask about our current promotions!