Tag Archives: countertop expert

What Is The Best Color For Kitchen Countertops?

With countertops coming in all types of colors, it can be confusing to choose the ideal color for your surfaces. What is the best color for kitchen countertops? You wonder. The right color depends on your tastes, how you use the countertops, and the overall style of your home.

We can’t tell you the right color to choose, but we can guide you on the most popular colors, so you make an informed decision.

Pure white

Pure white countertops give your surfaces a minimalist, new look that is inviting to look at. The white color looks excellent in contemporary surfaces and small spaces such as compact condo kitchens paired with minimalist white cabinets. The white color comes in handy at making your surfaces look big.

White is also a great addition for surfaces that already have a great deal of bold character in other finishes such as grainy wood cabinets.

In conclusion, the white surfaces make an excellent choice if you love crisp, modern style, you want to break up modern wood cabinets, or you love a nautical white and blue scheme.

Black

You should be cautious when choosing the black color as it can look gothic in some situations. An ideal application of the countertops is when you have dark cabinetry, dark floors, and other rich and weighty finishes.

If planning to have a dark-on-dark palette, you should have plenty of light sources. They can be natural, added, or both.  This way, you have your space feeling cozy and sophisticated.

The dark color comes in handy when you are looking to bring out the subtle colors in painted cabinets.

When choosing the color, choose dark gray instead of pure black to soften the look.

Countertop experts highly discourage against having one large black element as it will look out of place. Instead, you should have other sprinklings such as black cabinet knobs and pulls.

Black countertops are for you if:

  • You have dark cabinets, and you are looking for counters to blend in with them.
  • You have a smoky mirrored backsplash common in condos and modern homes.
  • You have colorful, fun cabinets, and you want them to shine.
  • You are looking to achieve a classic black and white scheme.
  • You want to connect to other black elements in your kitchen.

Wood

Wood is an excellent material when you are looking to infuse coolness to your kitchen. Wood countertops make excellent material for a transitional kitchen that balance traditional and contemporary elements.

Wood counters are also an excellent addition to spaces featuring wood cabinets. This makes sense if you are a true wood lover and don’t mind wood dominating your palette.

There are plenty of woods you can go with to give your surfaces a unique look. For example, there are lighter woods that have a casual or rustic feel. These woods can be stained or unstained, depending on your preferences.

There are also the darker woods that have a formal or polished look than the other tones. These make excellent additions for bright and breezy areas with plenty of windows.

When mixing wood counters with other wood finishes, you should stick to either warm or cool tones. This is to prevent them from clashing.

Wood countertops are good for you if you want an accent countertop to contrast with your other surfaces, your white cabinets need some warming up, you want your space to feel more approachable and intimate, and you enjoy a dash of rustic charm.

Gray

Gray is a neutral color, so a perfect material when you aren’t looking to make a statement in your kitchen. For a great look, pair the material with colorful cabinets. One of its greatest applications is tying together light and dark cabinets.

Gray also makes an excellent addition when pairing it with warm metallic accents. For example, if you have a brassy faucet or sink, a gray counter works perfectly at bringing out the warm tones, so they shine their best.

According to granite contractors Raleigh, you should choose gray countertops if you want a soft, friendly vibe with muted tones, you have colorful cabinetry or multiple tones of cabinets mixed together, you have warm metallic accents, or you have a black and white scheme that needs some softening.

5 Factors To Consider When Buying Granite Countertops

granite countertops

When you ask any homeowner, they will tell you that they want granite countertops. The countertops have been around for a long time, and they are not only durable, but they also significantly improve the look of the house.

For you to buy countertops you will be proud of, you need to be ultra-cautious when making the purchase. Some of the factors you should consider when buying include:

Your tastes and preferences

There is no way you are going to be proud of your purchase if it doesn’t suit your tastes and preferences. So, for you to be happy, ensure that the countertops look good in your eyes.

When you are in the countertop store, ask yourself several questions:

  • Do you love a stable or moving countertop?
  • A light or dark-colored one?
  • When you think about the perfect countertop, what comes to your mind?
  • Do you love straight lines or right angles?
  • Are you a lover of details?
  • What about vein style. Do you like it?

Most of the countertop companies have plenty of countertops that you might be confused about the right one to go for. To avoid this, talk to your fabricator, who will guide you on the right piece. It’s also wise that you carry the slab to your house and see how it blends with the rest of the house.

Remember, you might like the look of the countertop while at the store only for it to be unpleasant at home.

The size of the kitchen

Do you have a large or small kitchen? The size of your kitchen will significantly affect the type of countertop that you should go for. If you have a small kitchen, go for a light-colored granite.

The countertop will make the kitchen look spacious and smarter, even with little natural light.

Are you one of the lucky people, and you have a large kitchen? Experiment with dark colors. Carry a few dark-colored slabs to your home and see how they look in your kitchen.

The pattern of the countertops is also heavily influenced by the size of the kitchen. Three primary patterns that you can go for fare, speckled, solid, and marbled. Solid granite is an excellent choice for smaller kitchens.

Avoid a busy pattern when you have a smaller kitchen as it makes the kitchen look cramped and confused.

For a large kitchen, go with marbled or speckled countertops. You can also try out two granite colors and see how they look.

Quality of the stone

Granite is known for its durability, but there is no way it will withstand the test of time if it’s of poor quality. Luckily, you can easily tell the quality of the stone by looking at several factors such as:

  • Veins
  • Fissures
  • Surface pitting
  • Inclusions
  • Shade variation
  • Color concentrations

Edging of the countertops

There is no right or bad edging for your countertop. Whether you go for straight, bullnose, or beveled edge, you will significantly improve the look of your home. The safety aspects of your home should influence your edging choice. If you have small children, it would be dangerous to have a straight-edged countertop.

In such a scenario, you will be better off with a beveled or bullnose countertop edge.

Kitchen cabinets

You can buy the highest quality and most expensive countertops, but there is no way they will look good if they don’t match your cabinets. For a great look, ensure that your countertops match your cabinets.

You can match the granite with the cabinets in two ways: matching the color with the cabinets or pairing the marbling and veining.

When making the purchase, ensure that the counters you choose are the same color as the cabinets with darker veining. For example, pair white spring granite with white cabinets.

Some of the famous pairing examples you can go with include:

  • Dark brown cabinets with green granite
  • Neutral medium-brown maple cabinets with beige, grey and white granite
  • Cherry cabinets with granite such as white, Verde Peacock, and Ubatuba
  • Light to medium oak cabinets with contrasting granite such as black pearl
  • Regardless of the pairing that you choose, ensure that the countertops are installed by reputable granite contractors NC.

Is It Time To Undertake Countertop Replacement?

countertop replacement

Regardless of the type of countertops you have installed in your home, it will come a time when you will have to replace them. Do you know the right time to undertake countertop replacement? Here are signs it’s time to pull the trigger:

The countertops have serious cracks on them

Although, all types of countertops wear out, the situation is worse for low-end countertops. When you install cheap countertops, it’s only a few months or years, and you will start seeing clear signs of wear.

In some cases, the countertops are too worn out that you start seeing pressboard, wood, fiberglass, and other materials underneath.

When the countertops show clear signs of aging, repairing them won’t make things better—you have to replace them.

When installing the new countertops, don’t replace them with the same low-quality pieces—up your game and go for better, attractive, and long-lasting material.

These will not only look better, but they also will last for long; hence you won’t have to keep on replacing them.

The countertops have structural damage

Stone countertops are tough and can withstand a lot of abuse. Unfortunately, when you put a lot of pressure on them than they can handle, they are bound to get damaged.

For example, when you hit granite countertops with a meat mallet, they will get damaged.

In most cases, the countertops develop extremely unsightly damage. The damage can also be a cause of hazard to cooks, especially young children.

Other materials such as limestone scratch and break away into little particles that can get into your food.

To avoid all the hazards that come with damaged countertops, you should remove the damaged ones and replace them with new ones.

You are looking to sell the house

Do you know two of the most vital rooms in the house? The kitchen and bathroom. If your home is older, the countertops are most likely dated, damaged, or out of style; hence, these vital two rooms are in a horrible condition.

So trying to sell the house in this condition will be a tough call.

Luckily, you can quickly improve their look by replacing the countertops.

Many homeowners have the impression that they should install expensive countertops such as granite and marble. You don’t have to do this. When you install costly countertop materials, the chances are that you won’t recoup your money.

So what should you do instead?

Find an experienced countertop installer who will help you find a moderately priced countertop material that will give your house an elegant look. For the perfect look, ensure that an expert installs the countertops.

You feel the countertops are too old

If you have lived in your house for more than a decade without making major renovations, your countertops are most likely in a horrid state. If you aren’t as proud of your home as you used to be, it’s time to think about replacing the countertops.

Unlike when renovating to resell the house, you can go all out when renovating the house for your living. So there is no harm in going for the most expensive countertop material you can afford.

You shouldn’t buy expensive materials, then go ahead and hire a cheap, inexperienced contractor to install them as he/she will destroy them. So when you decide to go premium with the materials, also go premium with the contractor. Don’t hire a noob down the street.

Although, the contractor doesn’t have to be the most expensive in the city, they should show concrete evidence of experience.

There are ugly stains on the countertops

From coffee to wine, there are plenty of kitchen liquids that can cause stains on your countertops. Stained countertops look cheap and ugly, and if you have tried getting rid of the stains from the countertops without success, there is no way out, other than to replace them.

You can install any countertops in your home as long as it matches the theme of the house and doesn’t bore a hole in your pocket.

As mentioned above, work only with experienced granite countertop installers Raleigh. You don’t want people that will cause more problems than were originally there. Do you?

Granite Contractors: 6 Tricks On How To Remodel Your Kitchen For Less

When homeowners hear about kitchen remodeling, they imagine a humongous project that will require several hundreds of thousands of dollars to complete.

While some of the projects are extremely expensive, it doesn’t have to be the case with you. According to granite contractors, there are several things you can do to remodel your kitchen for less. Here are some of these things:

Use ready-to-assemble cabinets

Cabinets often carry the highest cost in a kitchen remodeling project, especially when you have to install new units. When the budget is not an issue, custom cabinets are often the best option. Since they are designed specifically for your kitchen, they give an excellent fit.

If the budget doesn’t allow, go for ready-to-assemble or semi-custom cabinets. If you are DIY enthusiast, you can assemble the cabinets by yourself, but if you have never done it before, let a contractor do it.

In addition to these cabinets being easy to install, they are also cheap, where they cost up to half the price of custom cabinets.

Are you one of the people that love grabbing their cabinets right off the shelf and get going? Then go for in-stock cabinets. The cabinets come in different sizes, shapes, and colors. Work with a contractor who will recommend the best ones for your home.

Keep existing cabinets

As mentioned above, cabinets are costly when you have to install new ones. Before you begin the remodeling project, always ask your contractor whether you have to remove the existing ones.

If you had installed high-quality kitchen cabinets and were taking good care of them, the chances are that they will still be in good shape and you don’t have to install new ones.

If they are of high quality, all you need to do is to apply a new fresh coat of paint, and you will restore the original look.

Consider alternative countertop materials

There are plenty of countertop materials you can go with when remodeling your kitchen. You can choose solid, tile, recyclable, concrete, stone, and many more.

Granite countertops are the most popular, but they are more expensive than the other materials in the market.

If operating on a tight budget, go with much cheaper countertop alternatives. For example, you can go with a butcher block that costs up to half the price of granite.

You can also go with laminate that is much cheaper than granite, both in cost and installation. For you to get the most from the installed countertops, have them professionally installed by an expert.

To save even more money, keep your eyes out for bargains. Both physical and online stores offer discounts that you can take advantage of if you are keen enough.

Keep an eye on appliances

Other than cabinets, the other items that can burn a hole in your pocket are appliances. Unless you have had your appliances for decades, you won’t have to replace many of them. Only consider replacing the appliances when it’s absolutely necessary.

When renovating, it’s normal to have the urge to move the appliances to a “better” place. Even if you aren’t replacing the appliances, moving the electrical and mechanics of the appliances can be costly, so leave the appliances where they are.

If you have to replace all the appliances, buy all of them from the same company. This is to increase your chances of attracting larger discounts.

Choose the open shelf design

Open shelving not only saves you money, but it also creates interest. Instead of spending thousands of dollars on new shelves, use salvaged wood or painted planks from your local hardware store.

Open shelving makes more sense when you have a small kitchen and plenty of things to store.

Just like with cabinets, ensure that the shelves are installed by a professional. You don’t want shelves that will break your precious items, do you?

Install more lights

Many homeowners think they need to undertake heavy renovation work, but they can cut costs significantly by installing lights. Work with expert countertop replacement Raleigh professionals and place under-cabinet lights.

Professionally designed pendants will also make your kitchen brighter and more stylish without spending a fortune.

9 Benefits Of Marble Countertops

marble countertops

Are you thinking about updating your kitchen? One of the best materials you should go for is marble. While not as popular as granite, marble countertops not only transform the look of your kitchen, but that of the entire house. The countertops come with plenty of benefits that include:

They are easy to find

While granite and quartz countertops are trendy, they don’t easily come by. Due to this, they delay installation and you have increased overhead costs.

Marble on the other hand is easy to find. You can easily find it on most stony yards and fabricators. This means when you are looking to install the countertops in your home, you won’t have to wait for days or even weeks for them to be delivered.

You can walk into a yard and drive home with the marble slab, install it, and enjoy a hot meal on it that evening. Convenient, right?

Marble is extremely durable

Although marble requires more maintenance than granite, it doesn’t mean that it’s not lasting. Due to its combination of strength and beauty, marble has been used as a building material for centuries.

Some monuments were constructed from it hundreds of years ago, and they are still standing. If the stone was fragile, these buildings won’t be standing.

The countertops don’t require a lot of care

As mentioned above, compared to quartz and granite countertops, marble requires more care. This is because it’s porous, which makes it more prone to staining and etching. While this is the case, it doesn’t mean you have to go out of your way to keep the countertops looking great.

First of all, you don’t need any specialty cleaner. To clean marble countertops, use dish soap or any other mild cleanser and a soft cloth. Stay away from harsh cleansers such as bleach and vinegar.

When spills happen, especially those resulting from wine and deep-colored liquids, wipe them immediately. You don’t want your countertops getting stained, do you?

When you notice a stain, use hydrogen peroxide to rub it away. Remember that hydrogen peroxide can etch the surfaces, so rinse it thoroughly once you are done.

Marble is cool to the touch

This is a unique quality that makes it a staple in a chef’s kitchen. The cool stone surface makes it ideal for rolling out the pastry, so the butter doesn’t heat up and compromise the integrity of the dough. The cool nature of the countertop also makes it easy to prepare other foods.

They are affordable

Due to its beautiful nature, marble looks extremely high end and unaffordable. When you are on a budget, you can’t imagine it in your house.

You will be shocked to learn that the countertop costs less than granite, quartz, and other natural stone countertop materials. Although, costs vary depending on the type of countertop and thickness, marble is more affordable than you can imagine.

You should note that some sellers might try to rip you off. When doing your research, take time to visit different stores and see what they have in stock. Settle at a store selling top quality countertops at an affordable price.

They come in more design options

Are you looking for a worktop that requires more than basic fabrication? Marble is your best bet. Marble is soft hence easy to work with. This means you can easily create countertops with fancy edges or give your countertops extra fabrication.

Marble is aesthetically beautiful

This is the major selling point for the countertop. The bright white color of the countertop dramatically improves the look of any home. The white color also makes a room appear larger, which contributes to its elegance.

Marble is heat resistant

Unlike other countertop materials, you can place hot pans and pots on the marble surfaces and not worry about the surfaces staining or getting damaged.

While this is the case, you should note constant exposure of the countertops to heat puts them at the risk of cracking. Even if the countertops can withstand a lot of heat, always have trivets and pads in place where you place the hot pots and pans.

The countertops are bright

The countertops have a natural glow that reflects light in a room. This makes it an ideal countertop replacement Durham option if you have a small kitchen or bathroom that you would like to make appear larger and brighter.

4 Factors To Consider When Buying Kitchen Countertops

If you are remodeling your current kitchen or constructing a new one, you need kitchen countertops. For you to buy the right countertops for your kitchen, you need to consider several factors that include:

Your activities

While the look of the countertops is vital as it’s what makes or breaks the kitchen, if you choose a countertop material that doesn’t blend properly with your activities, the material will wear out fast forcing you to keep on replacing it after every few uses which will be equivalent to throwing money down the toilet.

If you cook, entertain a lot or have kids in the house, you can’t buy the same countertops as someone who doesn’t cook often and lives alone.

If you like the look of a given countertop and still want the surfaces to be functional, consider getting more than one type of countertop surfaces. For example, if you love chopping things when cooking, install butcher’s block in one area of the kitchen and you will have a built-in cutting board.

If you often bake, install marble countertops in half of your countertops and you will have a surface to work with dough.

Mixing more than one countertop material also helps you to spend less. This is because you can install one less expensive material in one area and another that costs a little money in another area, and you will have an excellent looking kitchen.

Your budget

How much money are you looking to spend on the countertops? This is an essential factor to consider as it dramatically determines everything from the surfaces you will get to the countertop contractors you hire.

If you are like other homeowners, the look of the countertops is the most critical factor you consider. In such a case, buy countertops that closely resemble the ones you can’t afford.

For example, if you can’t afford marble countertops, go with Quartz countertops that have a similar look like marble but cost a little less.

Before you buy the countertops, consider the consistency of the countertops to the other parts of the kitchen. Ask yourself whether the cost is consistent with the other materials you have used.

This is because you can buy premium marble countertops, and when you install them in a kitchen with vinyl flooring, you create a quality imbalance.

A good rule is to spend 15-30% of your budget on kitchen countertops. If you find yourself spending less than 15% of your budget on countertops, the quality of the countertops is most likely inferior to the other kitchen materials.

On the other hand, if you find yourself spending more than 30% of the budget on countertops, you will most likely be overdoing it.

You need to find a sweet spot where the countertops you are looking to install match the quality of the other materials you have used in your kitchen.

Ease of maintenance

Different countertops require different maintenance methods. Before you fall in love with a given countertop material, think about the amount of work that goes into maintaining it.

Porous materials such as limestone, granite, and marble need to be oiled and sealed once a year.

While the butcher’s block is durable, it requires regular sealing to protect it from excessive damage.

Other materials such as quartz require you to wipe them with a cloth, and you have excellent looking surfaces.

If you aren’t sure of the right surfaces to go for, ask an expert to help you out.

Color of the countertops

The color of the countertops not only affects the look of the pieces in the kitchen, but it also affects the ease of maintaining the countertops.

For a great look, choose a tone that coordinates or contrasts with your cabinets. You should note that the tone doesn’t have to be a close match. For example, install brown countertops on natural which oak cabinets.

Choose countertops with a versatile color. This is because the paints and accessories change with time, so by choosing a versatile color, you are sure that your granite countertops Raleigh will match most of the kitchen accessories.

Countertop experts recommend that you keep your options open by picking materials with veins or splashes of color as they blend in with many accessories.

7 Tips To Consider When Installing Kitchen Countertops

best quartz countertop

Thinking about installing new kitchen countertops? Good for you as you are on your way to creating countertop surfaces that you will be proud of. Countertop installation is an intricate process, and you need to have plenty of things in place for the project to be a success. To give your kitchen a great look, pay attention to these tips:

Don’t be in a hurry

When they get money, many homeowners rush to get new countertop surfaces. Don’t do this as you end up buying the wrong stones. You also often end up working with the wrong contractor.

Regardless of how unsatisfied you are with the current surfaces, don’t be in a hurry to replace them. Take time to research and find out your options. Visit several stores and see what they have to offer. Also, take the time to interview several countertop contractors to find the right one for your project.

Color shouldn’t be, end-all, be-all

Color is crucial as it defines the look of your kitchen and choosing the wrong one can break the design of your surface. While this is the case, it shouldn’t be the end-all, be-all.

Pay close attention to the quality of the stone you are buying as quality is everything. You can have a stone with the most beautiful color, but if it cracks or stains easily, you are as good as not having installed the stone in the first place.

Always get samples

An average homeowner will visit countertop stores, and when they like the look and design of the stones on sale, they will go ahead and make huge orders. This is wrong as most of them end up hating the look of the countertops after installation.

Instead of doing this, take samples with you and see how they look in your kitchen. While you might like the color, design, or countertop material, you might not like how the countertop looks in your kitchen as it might not go well with your floor tiles or cabinets. It also might not go well with the design of the house.

The right thing to do is to order the countertops only after you have tried out the samples in your kitchen.

Have the right budget

Many people underestimate the amount of money they need to complete the countertop project. As a homeowner, the last thing you want is running out of money in the middle of the project and being forced to put the project on hold or borrow more money.

For you to avoid the inconveniences, take the time to undertake thorough research and come up with a budget before you begin the project. The key is being pessimistic with the amount of money you will need. When doing your budget, factor in hidden expenses such as clean up costs after installation, transport costs, and others.

Think about the everyday use of the countertops

It’s common to visit stores selling countertop surfaces and be wowed by the various stones on display. Don’t rush to buy them as they might not be ideal for your kitchen. What do you use your kitchen most for? This is the first question you should ask yourself.

If you are baker, you want countertop surfaces that can withstand high heat. If you are a culinary master, you want a stone that can tolerate acidic spills without staining.

Thicker isn’t always better

Just like color, a thick countertop doesn’t mean that the stone is excellent. Sometimes the thick surface is simply two stones that have been bonded together, which often leads to plenty of problems.

If this is the first time buying the stones, go to the stores with an experienced professional who has been in the industry for a long time to guide you.

Don’t outclass the other parts of the room

There is nothing wrong with installing the best and highest quality countertops, but when you install extremely high-quality countertops, then don’t touch the other parts of the kitchen, you give your kitchen a cheap look.

To give your kitchen a high end look, don’t just install high-quality countertops, work with granite contractors Durham and other professionals and revamp the entire kitchen.