Most Likely to Succeed: Granite vs. All the Rest

With the 2014 RAB Showcase of Homes wrapping up this past weekend, I have gotten millions of questions from clients remodeling who want to know what types of countertops to put in their kitchens.  My  answer is usually about as clear as mud.  Here’s why… the trend in new home designs recently has been dominated by polished granite in all varieties.  What I’m seeing and hearing in the real world is that consumers are looking for more character and granite isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.  I have four options that I generally recommend to clients who are building or remodeling and here they are.

1.  Drumroll please… Granite!  

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  • Types to choose from: polished (most common), sand blasted, brushed, and flamed.
  • Pros: each slab is unique, (because it comes from nature).  You cannot be a control freak with your granite because you are not going to find symmetrical slabs to balance out your bathroom vanity, it’s just not happening.  You have to embrace the beauty of nature here.  It’s also a very hard and durable surface which is why it’s so popular.
  • Cons: it needs annual resealing and it’s beauty comes at a price.  Depending on where you’re getting your slab(s) from, your shiny new counter tops can run you anywhere from $45-400+ per square foot.

2.  Quartz, (the new kid).

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  • Quartz originates from Italian company, Breton.
  • Pros: it’s a great look, it’s very hard & durable, and there are very few imperfections.
  • Cons: it’s not granite.  You will find that many buyers believe granite is the one and only standard for countertops.
  • Quartz countertops will typically run you between $60-100 per square foot.

3. Wood, (aka Butcher Block)

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  • Wood countertops are just strips of wood glued together to form a slab.  They come in different colors, widths, and shapes.
  • Pros: You can use it as a cutting board and just buff out any scratches or cuts.  It’s character grows with age and it’s incredibly easy to clean and install.
  • Cons: It’s susceptible to stains and water marks and it requires a food safe sealant.
  • It’s a steal at roughly $40-65 per square foot.


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  • I saved the best for last.
  • Glass countertops are heat, stain, and scratch resistant; not to mention stunning.  They add a fantastic pop of style and/or color to your space.
  • Types: translucent, colored, smooth, or embedded with texture.
  • Glass counters are priced very comparably to granite, just without the annual resealing!

There you have it.  Are you ready to remodel!?  😉  Check back for more helpful information and follow my blog so you don’t miss a beat!

Jenna Martindale | Lic Mn | Edina Realty | 507.993.7036 |


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