If you enjoy cooking, then you probably enjoy spending a lot of time in your kitchen. Cooking can provide some relaxation in your chaotic life — it forces you to slow down and appreciate the beauty of food and the complexities of flavors. To really get into cooking, you must have the right environment first. If you find yourself feeling “whatever” about your current kitchen, then there’s a huge glaring problem already. The many components of your kitchen (such as the backsplash, countertops, sink fixtures, and more) come together to form a unique setting where you can really get into the groove of prepping and cooking delicious meals. If you aren’t entirely happy with your current kitchen, then perhaps it’s time to think about what type of counters you should have in your new home’s dream kitchen.
Types of Countertops
Are your current countertops drab and boring? Don’t fall asleep while prepping your favorite meals or entertaining friends. With the right type of material, your countertops can really pop and give you a spring in your step while putting together that coq au vin or whipping up that tasty cheesecake. With each type of countertop material comes its own pros and cons — we’ll explore that further for you so you can make the right choice when it comes to your new home’s kitchen.
Natural stone has become one of the most popular countertop materials used in homes. This isn’t because of sheer luck — natural stone is one of the most durable, beautiful, and unique materials you can ever hope for when it comes to your countertops. Because these stones are found naturally, each slab has its own special “designs”, meaning no one else in the world has the same exact countertops as you do.
The most popular types of natural stone countertops are granite and soapstone. Prices for granite have lowered significantly, making it a relatively affordable option in comparison to some other popular materials. The best selling points for granite are it’s wide range of colors profiles and high durability. While most granite slabs come factory sealed with sealers that will last for many years it is advisable to refresh these sealers occasionally or invest in a lifetime sealer for the material.
Soapstone is a beautiful material but is not as popular as granite since they have much narrower choices when it comes to color selection. If you’re a fan of darker colors, then soapstone may be a good choice for you since it comes in a dark green color (sometimes a green-grey as well). Soapstone is a soft material so it can mark easily and will often develop a natural and potentially uneven patina over time. Scratches can be buffed out and a darker more uniform look can be achieved by periodically applying mineral oil to the counters. The natural patina soapstone develops over time is often viewed as a positive of the material as it creates a worn old world feel.
Often a slight upgrade from granite counters, engineered quartz counters are another nice option to consider. Quartz offers the same durability of granite with the added benefit of not needing to be sealed to be stain resistant. Engineered quartz is available in many colors and some manufacturers are now offering more random patterns to mimic the look of some natural stone counters. The resin in the material can be susceptible to heat damage so it is best not to place hot pans or other overly hot object on the counters.
Although naturally breathtaking, wood may be best used in lower traffic areas of the kitchen as a countertop material. The downside of wood is that it can scratch easily and has a low tolerance for heat. The upside, aside from wood’s beauty, is that any damage can be easily buffed out of the material. In order to bring out the innate beauty of wood, the material must be sealed. This can be done with a standard wood sealer that can be buffed and resealed when necessary or with a food grade mineral oil sealer if you wish to use the material as a food prep surface. This oil finish has to be reapplied approximately once a month, so it can be a time-consuming process, but the final product is beautiful and may be worth it!
Becoming a more popular counter option, concrete offers a more industrial or modern look for a kitchen countertop. Most concrete fabricators will template the kitchen and form the counters in the controlled environment of their workshop. Concrete is a durable option being scratch resistant and having a very high tolerance for heat. Dyes can be added to the material to create many different color options. A risk with concrete is the material cracking over time and fabricators are careful to reinforce the material during the fabrication process. As with many other counter options, the concrete surface should be sealed occasionally to prevent staining.
No matter what type of material you choose for your new countertops, Woodstone Custom Homes is here to help you during the process and to build you a beautiful new custom home. Give us a call today!
Let us help you create your dream home: 585-586-0953