When you personify your home, which part of the house would be the heart?
Well, it would be the kitchen. It’s the most happening place of the house. It’s the most desirous place to make beautiful memories with your family. Whether you are the chef or the host, not far from obvious, you want it to be the most beautiful, illustrious, loved corner of your house. Besides dining table, kitchen island, crafted cabinets, luxurious kitchen sink, a kitchen countertop is the center of everyone’s attraction. It has to be the best. But would it be secure in your pocket?
Well, it’s not necessary that the best ones have to be expensive. If you carry out some analysis, you can find out the perfect one that will check all the quality boxes you need. Kitchen countertops have an extensive range of options to choose from, based on the type of material, strength, and durability, heat resistance, ease of maintenance, visual appeal, etc. However, a thorough fact check based on your needs will help you to strike a balance between the above-stated quality factors and a low budget.
First of all, you must decide the kind of material you want on your countertop. The most budget-friendly article is laminate.
Replacing Kitchen Countertops On A Budget Using Laminate countertops
Laminate countertops are low cost and easy to maintain. They can easily mimic solid surfaced and pricey stone countertops. You can also save the cost of installation by installing it on your own. But, they are more prone to scratches, and their heat resistance is too low compared to their stable surfaced counterparts. As a healthy advice, if you opt for laminate material for your countertop, you must install it in the areas where there are fewer chances of heating or get scratched, such as around the sink and its corners, places where small kitchen appliances would be stationed, laminate can also be installed on the back support wall of the countertop. For the remaining uncovered area, you can go for a more heat resistant material such as glass or wood countertop.
Glass countertops too are low on budget and also offer plenty of personalization options. These range from various colors, stains, shades, along with customized LEDs as another popular option. These are accompanied by another layer of tempered glass coating which is durable and a long runner.
If you want a budget friendly and an old café style rugged look for your kitchen, you can go for butcher block or wooden countertop. When accompanied with modern kitchen appliances, they provide a classic contrast between old style and modern style. But they need a bit of extra care, such as any spills must be immediately wiped off, and for protection from scratches, they must be oiled, and a solid epoxy layer coating will do the best. And for added heat resistance, you can use heat wraps and mats. Even if they get scratched, they can be filled quickly by using a combination of oils and scrap wood. Any flaws can be scraped out and reshaped to the old state.
Solid surfaced countertops
Solid surfaced countertops, which are made of materials like acrylic and cross-linked polyester, come with the added quality of stain repellence and less maintenance, you can easily sand out any scratches or flaws. To some extent, they are similar to laminates, except they are more robust, heat resistant, durable and provide a lavish look as compared to laminates. Professional installation is necessary for a perfect and seamless look.
Tile-surfaced countertops, here again, the cost margin is decided by the material you choose. Granite, porcelain, marble, ceramic, among all of these, glass and vinyl coated ceramic tiles are preferred to be more trendy and budget-friendly. You can also save installation cost by following a DIY guide. Also, you can easily replace any damaged tile provided you have purchased some extra tiles. But, their main disadvantage is that the tile grout lines are the most favored collection area for dirt. Hence it must be cleaned and sealed regularly. Also, if the tile material is a heavy one such as granite or marble, then your base cabinets require reinforcement for added support.
Concrete Countertops. These have costs similar to premium granite or marble countertops. They can cost between 35$ to 140$ per square foot. But they are highly customizable and can be tailored to suit your needs. You can quickly mold it into your desired shape. The material concrete is a mix of cement and aggregate. The aggregate material can be varied from sand, crushed limestone, semi-precious stone, and many more available options to churn out the required qualities, like increased durability and strength, or to Impart a specific color or texture.
Their cost is highly decided by the type of aggregate material and the skill and amount of work required to carve out the desired design, along with the installation charges. They are more reliable as compared to laminate, wood and glass countertops.
Granite countertops. These have reliable build quality, high heat tolerance, scratch resistance, easy to clean and maintain, and is preferred by a larger pool of people. Although it’s a little bit heavy on the pocket than all of the other alternatives that have been stated earlier, it can be noted that granite strikes the perfect balance between quality and budget. It provides a natural look and feel, also granite being a tough stone; it can last a lifetime. It cannot be easily broken or scratched. The surface of granite is accurately flat and firm. Also, granite provides a large variety of color combinations to choose from. If you are unable to find a perfect countertop that suits you, and if you agree to raise your budget a bit, you can blindly go for a granite countertop.
Whether you are building a new home or remodeling your kitchen, selecting the perfect countertop, from a bird’s eye view, seems to be a difficult task, because there is a large number of options to choose from. But once you decide and fix your budget, determine the qualities you seek in your countertop, then you can easily trace out and select the most suitable one you need.