A new set of countertops in your kitchen can transform the entire feel of the room. As such it is essential to pay a lot of attention when selecting models. But a good counter does not need to break your bank. There are plenty of affordable options out there for you remodel. Check out our list of five inexpensive countertops for your next kitchen.
There is no denying that the countertops in any kitchen can make or break the room. Counters that do not match the feel of a kitchen remodel can stick out like a sore thumb. Luckily, evil does not necessarily mean inexpensive. There is plenty of great, affordable countertop material you can choose from when remodeling your kitchen. If you want some cheap alternatives to expensive marble, then you have come to the right place.
On this list, we present you with five different inexpensive countertops for your kitchen remodel, as well as reasons why granite, quartz, and the concrete material is so expensive.
Five Different Inexpensive Countertops
While you may have unpleasant memories of your relative’s kitchen that feels trapped in the 1970s, laminate counters have aged very well in the kitchen world. Thanks to new designs and colors by companies like Formica, laminate counters have reached the twenty-first century. While it is unlikely to beat out granite or marble regarding its desirability, more and more home buyers are coming around to its dynamic nature — mainly if it is utilized in your kitchen effectively.
These types of inexpensive counters are great for remodels on a budget because they are affordable, practical and customizable. Most laminate countertops cost somewhere in the ballpark of ten to forty dollars per square feet. The material is also easier to replace than a lot of the solid body. What is more, they are durable; laminate is resistant to heat, staining, and hard impacts. Newer models even get rid of the ugly edge that sometimes sticks out of old laminate tops.
However, the material does have some weak areas. A laminate as a material is susceptible to sharp knives, so make sure you always use a cutting board when chopping anything. When installing laminate, make sure you order the stuff in a larger size than your counter. This way, you can form the design into an appropriate counter block. It is better to have some extra material you can get rid of instead of too little.
Butcher Block Countertops
The wood of a butcher block can add a more rustic, naturalistic look to your kitchen remodel, depending on what type you get. And there are many types of wood to choose from; bamboo, cherry, teak, maple, oak, and birch are a few of the more popular models. The many different types of wood allow for a lot of different options when it comes to planning your kitchen remodel. Whether it is a modern, French country, Mediterranean or contemporary, butcher block wood fits almost every design.
Butcher blocks both look and feel warmers than some of the cold stone tops. Wood is also practical since it makes an excellent workstation. You can cut and work directly on the counter as long as you wash it beforehand. If you use reclaimed or recycled wood, then butcher block countertops are much better for the environment than some other types of counters. Wood is also beautiful because you can merely refinish it after ten to twenty years instead of replacing the entire thing.
However, there are some potential drawbacks you should be aware of before committing to it. If a butcher block is not sealed correctly, then bacteria can rot in the open holes. Wood is also more susceptible to water damage, and if you do not treat the service with regular mineral oil, then rotting can occur because the water seeps into the seams of the wood. Butcher blocks also become scratched and dented easier than many of the other materials on this list.
Acrylic and Polyester Countertops
If you want the look and feel of marble, granite, or any other stone, but cannot afford the installation price, then acrylic and polyester countertops are for you. These types of chemically treat solid surface counters have an even higher level of customization the laminate counters. Typically most companies offer over one hundred different colors and designs for you to enjoy. They both look softer and warmer than much other stone material as well.
Unlike wood material, these surface are nonporous so they are a bit more hygienic that butcher blocks. You also do not need to perform any maintenance on them, besides the occasional cleaning. While they are durable, they may scratch with knives or other scraps. Luckily, you can usually remove there scratches and marks by sanding down the material with a piece of sandpaper.
Unlike laminate and some butcher blocks, the seams on acrylic are not visible at all. One downside to these solid surface materials is their vulnerability to extreme heat which discolors the material and destroys seams. While acrylic and polyester countertops do offer more regarding options than laminate and butcher block material, they also cost a little more. Most types of solid surface souters cost between forty-five to seventy-five dollars per square feet.
Engineered Stone Countertops
If you feel like you need authentic stone for your kitchen, but do not want to spend a ton of money, then engineered stone is a suitable material for your inexpensive countertops. Engineered stone combine the beauty of natural rock with the functionality and cleanliness of solid top counters. Like granite and marble, this material is cold, slippery and smooth.
The companies make engineered stone material out of ninety-five percent quartz or other natural rock combined with some synthetic material. The result is a material that is almost indistinguishable from other stone tops at a fraction of the price. Most types of engineered stone countertops cost around sixty-five to eighty-five dollars per square feet.
When you install tile countertops correctly, they can instantly give your kitchen a regal and elegant feel. Titles are available in many different colors so that you can pick the best match for your kitchen’s color scheme. Or if you have a style like the French countryside, then elaborately design colored tiles can complete the mood of the piece. The cost of pipe can vary depending on if you install it yourself or hire someone else to do it for you. Still, most of the time it is still significantly less than granite or quartz material — usually hundreds, or even thousands of dollars.
Unfortunately, along with their sleek looks and inexpensive cost, tile countertops also come with some problems. The material is incredibly fragile. Dropping something substantial, like say a cast iron skillet or a heavy pot, could crack the tile countertop. Even leaning too hard on the edge of the material could potentially break it as well. While it is not too hard to replace the damaged tile pieces, it can be incredibly hard to find a matching part of tile if you do not have some leftovers lying around. As such, replaced tiles may potentially be a different color.
Another frequent complaint associated with tile countertops is dirty grout lines. The grout lines are the intersecting, rubber-like material that runs between the tile countertop. These lines can quickly become irreparably unclean with food, liquid and dirt stains. Scrubbing alone with not get rid of these stains to the grout. At least once a year you should have the grout joint sealed. If you spill something on your grout lines, then make sure you clean it up right away. Otherwise, it may leave a bad stain.
More Expensive Options
There is nothing wrong with wanting granite, concrete or quartz countertops for your kitchen. Many consider these materials to be somewhat timeless. However, you should be aware that these materials are amongst the most expensive countertop options out there. So why are they so expensive? Granite is costly because workers need to mine it in either Turkey, Italy or India.
Similarly, a few number of suppliers control the vast majority of quartz, so the price has increased greatly over the years. However, the most expensive feature of these large stone options is the installation. It is almost impossible to install this rock material yourself, so you will need to rely on contractors. These contracting charges can add up very quickly.
We hope this article gave you some countertop inspiration for your next kitchen remodel. There is not one, the perfect type of material that will magically fit every kitchen type. Instead, you need to match the counter type to the general style of your kitchen. Price is also an important consideration. This process can be easier said than done. But if you think practically about the design and style of your kitchen, we believe you will find the perfect set of inexpensive countertops.