At the beginning of your renovation, knowing where to start can seem overwhelming. From countertops to cabinets to fixtures, there is no short supply of decisions to make. Picking the materials for your countertops is a central part of the overall design process that should be well thought out. Lifestyle and budget are two of the top things to keep in mind when deciding on a surface for your new kitchen or bathroom. Here’s a breakdown of materials available at Hard Rock Stone Works and how they may or may not fit your lifestyle and budget.
You may think of dolls and bathtubs when you hear the “porcelain” but this durable and versatile material has been gaining popularity when it comes countertops. While it is thin material by nature, it is also strong, affordable and can provide a high end look at a more budget friendly price. With virtually no cons, porcelain to resistant to stains, acids and scratches in addition to providing antibacterial protection. It does not need to be sealed like some other stone surfaces and it’s hard, durable nature means chips and cracks won’t need to be high on your list of concerns.
A classic choice for kitchen countertops, granite has long been a natural go to for renovations of all sorts. From kitchens to bathrooms to outdoor spaces, granite can be an elegant and affordable selection for all design styles. Granite is incredibly strong, resistant to abrasions and stains as well as affordable. The only real potential con is the material’s ability to withstand heat. Placing hot pots and pans on the surface may initiate cracking so you’ll want to be sure to have something between the countertop and your cookware.
Maybe you have heard of quartzite, maybe you haven’t. Either way, this quartz-marble hybrid can bring a level of elegance to your space without the price tag that Marble carries. Mimicking marble with it’s look, quartzite packs the durability of granite and can therefore be placed in high traffic and even outdoor spaces. Another plus? Quartzite is heat resistant by nature and therefore less prone to heat related damage than Granite.
Combining a natural stone with engineered materials has made Quartz a top contender for homeowners and interior designers alike. Available in nearly every color, there is bound to be a Quartz slab for you regardless of your design preferences. In addition to being non-porous and non absorbent, Quartz is resistant to acids and alkalis. However, like Granite, Quartz can only withstand temperatures up to 450 degrees so you’ll want to be cautious of what you set directly on the stone. The stone can also be prone to scratches and abrasions so you’ll need to exercise caution and make sure to always have a cutting board handy.
Chances are when you think Marble, you think elegance. Praised for centuries because of its natural beauty and versatility, the natural stone can be found throughout the world used in art, decorative features such as columns and flooring. Important to note about Marble is that while it is versatile, it can be more easily damaged than some of the other materials we feature at Hard Rock Stone Works. Great for wet spaces such as bathrooms, the stone can be damaged by common acids found in kitchen spaces. Additionally, Marble is a “softer” stone so you should avoid using it in high traffic areas where it may become scratched. You should also avoid using the material in exterior spaces as it can be affected by acid rain and other weathering elements. Marble can be expensive so you may want to consider this for smaller areas or accent features.
Generally speaking, you don’t want to commit to a countertop choice without thinking of the big picture. You’ll want to keep cabinets, backsplashes and flooring in mind when picking your countertops too. Letting the entire remodel remain in the forefront of your mind can prevent the space from looking disjointed and mismatched when all is said in done.
Additionally, you’ll want to keep you total budget in mind before you get your heart set on a certain materials. Make sure you don’t overspend in one area and force yourself to make concessions in another. Knowing the portion of funds you have allocated for each element can save you from making tricky decisions down the road.
We always recommend ordering samples AND taking a look around either our Troy or Sterling Heights locations to see what fulls slabs look like as well as what certain stones look like in real life settings. We have friendly and knowledgeable staff available to help walk you through the process and take some of the pressure off the decision making.