Face Your Kitchen
Your Guide to Kitchen Cabinet Refacing

Finish Your Kitchen with the Perfect Countertops

by Gabby Hyman
Face Your Kitchen Columnist

One of the surest ways to finish off your kitchen remodeling effort with a fine touch is to replace your scarred or faded countertops.

Tackling Those Kitchen Countertops

For now, let's leave the removal and installation costs out of it. Just remember that if you're in over your head on this project, bring in professional help. It costs your nerves as well as your bank account to rip out peeling or cracking kitchen countertops right after you've finished remodeling.

Your decisions about any kitchen counter remodeling project should focus on the cost, durability, and appearance characteristics of the countertop material. The most common countertop materials include ceramic (or porcelain), soapstone, granite, marble, laminates, concrete, stainless steel, wood (or butcher block), and engineered stone. You may want to consult with a home improvement store clerk or kitchen remodeling contractor in choosing the material that suits your wallet as well as functional needs.

Evaluating Countertop Cost, Durability, and Ease of Maintenance

Many people choose ceramic or porcelain tile for quick and relatively inexpensive kitchen counter remodeling since tile is versatile in looks, maintenance, and installation. On the other hand, tile is easy to chip and damage, and it can look terrible if you don't know how to install it properly.

Wood countertops are easy to maintain, but scar easily and can suffer extensive water damage. Marble and granite countertops can look fabulous in most kitchens, but they're expensive to install. You'll need an expert to help plan a counter remodeling project with these materials, and you won't want to tackle installation on your own. The good news is stone can increase the value of your home considerably.

Take time evaluating the best solution for you. With careful budgeting and sound advice, you can finish off that kitchen remodeling campaign with a flourish.

About the Author
Gabby Hyman has written for print and online media for more than 20 years. He has created online content for eToys, GoTo.com, Siebel Systems, Avaya, and Nissan UK. He has also been a web consultant to the Governor of California. As an author of fiction, journalism, and poetry, Gabby is a former English professor for the University of Illinois, University of Alaska, and Old Dominion University. He holds an MFA in fiction writing from the University of Alabama.

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