The surface material you use for your kitchen countertop may seem like an innocuous decision, but it can make or break a kitchen renovation. When deciding on what countertop surface to go with, you’ll have to consider factors like budget and whether or not you’re looking to increase your homes value. Each material has its own set of benefits and drawbacks that we’ll go over to ensure your kitchen renovation turns out exactly the way you planned.
Granite is one of the most popular and luxurious kitchen countertop choices due to its durability and the allure of natural stone. One of the benefits of granite is its resistance to heat, cuts, and scratches, so you won’t have to worry about setting hot pans on it. It also comes in many unique patterns, as every slab of natural stone is different.
The biggest caveat of installing granite is the cost, as it is certainly one of the most expensive options out there. Granite countertops will require regular sealing in order to make them stain resistant, which can add to the cost of maintenance. The edges of granite are also vulnerable to chipping, which you’ll have to have professionally repaired.
If you’re looking for something just as unique as granite but a little more customisable, concrete may be the perfect choice. Concrete countertops can be customised with whatever texture or pattern you want, giving your kitchen a unique and personalised look. You can also form them into more uncommon shapes if your kitchen countertop requires a different layout or design than traditional slabs. Concrete is resistant to heat and scratching, making it a durable choice.
There are certain factors that make concrete a little more expensive than some other countertop materials. Because concrete must be custom-installed, it will require professional installation, making the price go up. It’s also susceptible to cracking over time and will require regular sealing to maintain.
Another popular choice that’s just as classy as natural stone is engineered stone, aka quartz. Engineered stone countertops are made of crushed quartz bound with resins. They require very little maintenance and, unlike granite or concrete, they don’t need to be sealed. Engineered stone is also resistant to acid, heat, and scratching. Engineered stone countertops are just as customisable as concrete, with a wide variety of patterns and colours available that can mimic natural stones like marble or granite.
Although engineered stone is also on the more expensive side when it comes to kitchen countertop materials, it’s a lot more durable and easily maintained than granite or concrete, meaning your money goes a lot farther. It is vulnerable to chipping on the edges as well, so you may want to round the edges if you want to avoid having to repair it.
Laminate is easily the most affordable option on the market, and it’s come a long way from the laminate kitchen countertops of the past. In recent years they’ve introduced a wider variety of colours and patterns of laminate countertops that can give your kitchen whatever look or style you prefer, even mimicking natural stone. Installation is easy, and because laminate is stain resistant, maintenance is effortless as well.
However, laminate is the most affordable choice for a reason. Anyone looking to sell their home should avoid laminate, as homebuyers tend to look down on laminate countertops. They are also vulnerable to damage from cracking, scratching, chipping, and heat, and cannot be repaired. If you damage your laminate countertop, the only option is to replace it.
A wildcard kitchen countertop material is wood, which can give your kitchen a unique and cosy feel. The natural look of wood can be perfect if you’re going for a French country design. Wooden countertops are perfect for preparing food, as wood is incredibly bacteria-resistant. They’re easily installed and repaired, with damage able to be quickly sanded out. Wood is very heat resistant and, with the proper finish, will last for a vey long time. It’s a much more affordable option than natural stone, making a wooden countertop a great alternative for those who want the uniqueness of natural stone without the cost.
Wooden countertops are vulnerable to damage from scratching and cutting, so they’ll need to be sanded regularly to maintain the look of the countertop. They’ll also need to be resealed periodically to protect from staining and water damage. Wood can also crack if improperly maintained and, although it is bacteria resistant, it will require proper and regular cleaning to avoid the build-up of bacteria.
As any interior design company will tell you, your kitchen countertop is one of the biggest features in the design of your kitchen. Carefully choosing the material for your kitchen will make sure you get the look you’re going for without having to redo it within a year due to improper maintenance. Home Guide is a Singapore home interior design company with plenty of experience working on kitchens. We are more than happy to work with you to help you choose the right countertop for your home. Check out our residential interior design portfolio to see the different kitchen countertop materials we’ve used in our various designs and contact us for all your Singapore interior design needs!