Tag Archives: Countertop Installation

8 Tips On How To Keep Kitchen Countertops Clear

Keeping your kitchen countertops clear of clutter not only keeps them looking good, but it also prevents accidents from coming about. Wondering how to keep kitchen counters clear? Here are tips on how to do it:

Have as little as possible on your countertops

This is the foundation of everything. Instead of having plenty of things on your surfaces, store them in organized cabinets and drawers. Save your countertop space only for the absolutely necessary essentials.

Many homeowners treat their countertops as drop-offs for keys, magazines, dirty dishes, and other items. Don’t do this.

When it comes to appliances, only have the absolutely essential ones. These are the ones that you use every day, such as coffee makers, cookers, toaster, oven, and others. A good rule of thumb is if you haven’t used it for a week, you don’t need it on your counters. Lock it up.

Don’t use the fridge as an art gallery.

Visit many homes, and you will find all things on the refrigerators: photos, notes, lists, magnets, and plenty of other things. You might have the impression that this makes you look cool, but it’s not the case. It actually makes the kitchen look dirty and disorganized.

For a cleaner kitchen, keep it simple. If you have no emotional connection to a photo, don’t need that note or magnet, get rid of it.

Have a catch-all bowl

It’s normal to have papers, knickknacks, and other small items here and there. Since you can’t always put these in storage all the time, you should have a junk bowl on your countertops to catch the items.

At the end of every week, sort through the collection and put the different items in the right place.

If you must have things on your counters, don’t leave them haphazardly there. Place them on trays or stands to avoid the messy hodge-podge look.

Stick the microwave in your kitchen island

The microwave is large and can take up a huge chunk of the precious counter space. Unfortunately, you can’t put it in the cupboard and be pulling it in and out every time you want to use it.

What is the solution to this? Stick it on the kitchen island.

Make your sink multifunctional.

When buying a new sink, go for one that performs more than one function. For example, you can go for one with mini ledges inside the sink that make it easy to easily pop in the drying rack, cutting board, wash pan and at the same time have space to stack and wash the dirty dishes.

While such a sink will be a little expensive, it will be worth it as it will save you a lot of space.

Add pretty but functional items.

You should note that having clutter-free counters doesn’t mean you can’t have anything on them. You can have your desired items, but they should be attractive and add some functionality to your counters.

For example, you can have jars on the counters that look pretty and carry grains and other materials.

Have decluttering rules

If you have many people living in the same house, have rules that will keep the counters clear. Some of the rules you can have include:

  • Dirty dishes should always go directly in the sink or dishwasher but never on the counter.
  • After cleaning the dishes, always clean the countertop surfaces.
  • Don’t place the paperwork on the kitchen counters.
  • Kitchen cabinets and drawers should always stay organized all the time, so every item in the kitchen has a place.

Add storage areas on your counters.

For items such as knife blocks and others that take up a lot of space, add more storage areas. Some of the storage ideas you can use to your advantage include:

  • Hook for keys
  • Wall hanging fruit basket
  • Wall-mounted paper towel holder.
  • Shelves for cookbooks
  • Wall-mounted racks for commonly used spices.
  • Magnetic strips or backsplash for knives and other utensils

You can also have a pocket inside your cabinet door to store your baking sheet and cutting board. Like your granite countertops Durham, keep the storage areas clean and free from unnecessary junk. You don’t want them messy and disorganized.

How To Update Kitchen Countertops

kitchen countertops

Old or damaged countertops do nothing but detract from the value and beauty of your home. Thankfully, you can update them and restore the look. To help you out, here are ways on how to update kitchen countertops:

Paint the countertops

If your current pieces aren’t damaged, painting them can go a long way towards restoring them. If you have the skills, you can paint them by yourself, but if you have never done it before, let an expert help you out. When choosing the paint color, ensure it complements the cabinet color and design. It also should be high quality; otherwise, you will keep repainting the surfaces every few years.

Resurface the countertops with a cement finish

Looking to improve the look of the countertops but strapped of cash? How about resurfacing the countertops with a cement finish? Begin with protecting the neighboring areas with painter’s tape. In addition to this, ensuring you don’t sand these areas, it also makes your work easy as you don’t have to clean the cement in the event you accidentally graze them during application.

To make the application easy, sand the surfaces with coarse sandpaper. Don’t make the surfaces smooth as cement sticks better to irregular surfaces.  Once the surface is ready, apply the first coat and let the cement dry. You should then use medium sandpaper to remove any noticeably uneven surfaces and apply a second coat.

Wait for the cement to dry again and repeat the process until you have a beautiful, even surface. Complete your work by sealing the cement. To do it, you should pour water-based sealer into the paint tray then use a roller to apply the sealer over the cemented surfaces.

Tile your countertops

This is as simple as it sounds. Buy tiles and arrange them on your existing countertops. Like paint, you should be cautious about the type and design of tiles you go for. In addition to the tiles complementing the look of the kitchen, they also should be made by a reputable company. This way, you are sure they will withstand the chaos in the kitchen.

If you are looking to create a tiled backsplash on the wall behind the countertop, first remove the backsplash, creating a continuous effect that makes your project easy as you will have only one right angle to deal with between the wall and the countertop.

If you have the skills, you can lay the tiles by yourself, but if you have never done it before, let an expert help you out.

Replace the countertops

Another great way to improve your countertops is to replace them with other countertop materials. There are plenty of these materials you can choose from. The most common ones being:

Laminate

Laminate is extremely cheap; therefore, a great option when operating on a tight budget. The cool thing with installing laminate is it doesn’t make it obvious you are using cheap material. This is because it comes with plenty of designs that even resemble high-end materials such as granite and marble.

When choosing the material, go for a textured surface instead of a flat one. This is to have an easy time concealing scratches and other forms of wear and tear.

Wood

Want to give your kitchen a more natural look? Why not install wooden countertops? Wood comes with plenty of benefits that include: gives the house a natural rustic look, it’s easy to repair, and you can confidently prepare food on it without worrying about contamination.

On the flip side, you need to keep applying mineral oil, varnish, and beeswax to maintain the look. Wood is also easily damaged by heat and moisture, so you can’t use it around sinks or over the dishwasher.

Marble

If you have the budget and want to give your kitchen a fancy look, you should install marble countertops Durham. Like the other materials, ensure the marble pieces you choose match the design of the house. They also should have a classic look so you won’t keep replacing them when they grow out of style.

To keep your marble in good shape, seal it regularly. You also should avoid placing heavy items on it to prevent it from chipping.

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.

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.

Real benefits of granite for your kitchen and bathroom

kitchen countertop replacement

If you are thinking about remodeling your kitchen or bathroom, countertop is one of the important aspects to consider. A countertop can either make or break the decor of your kitchen and bathroom. It is important to select the right countertop material, as plenty of countertop materials are present on the market. Among the crowd of countertops, granite countertops are the most trending countertop material. This surface has its own charm. However, granite countertops are more expensive than other countertops, but they worth every penny you spend on them.

Advantages of granite countertops

Granite is the suitable countertop material for both kitchens and bathrooms. This natural stone is capable of withstanding against heat and load, as well as water and chemicals. Take sneak peek over below mentioned benefits of granite kitchen and bathroom countertops:

Granite Countertops Possess Timeless Beauty

Home decor trends come and go, but timeless beauty of granite countertops remain in trend. This material is always finds its spot at top in home improvement and remodeling magazines. The color and texture of granite countertops never fades.

Granite Countertops Offer Unique Results

Since granite slabs are made from natural stone, every slab has its own unique pattern. No two granite slabs are identical to each other. Thus, you need not have to worry about your countertop from being copied.

Granite Countertops Are Extremely Sanitary

Hygiene is important for both kitchen and bathroom. One of the biggest advantages of selecting granite surface is that it is a non-porous. Thus, it does not require a lot of maintenance and germs can’t hide anywhere. You can clean it with soap water and cloth. However, you need to pay attention over granite countertop sealing.

Granite Countertops Add Value to Your Home

Granite countertops are ultimate addition to home. The granite bathroom countertop apex increases the value of bathroom, whereas granite kitchen countertop increases the value of kitchen. You will get full value of your money with granite countertop.

Granite countertops are can be a value to home. You should choose the right contractor for countertop installation. The countertop installation should be done in an adequate manner.

Best Countertop Materials for Outdoor Kitchens

Most kitchens are not complete without kitchen countertops. There are many countertops you can choose for your kitchen. There are marble countertops, granite countertops, and other countertop material of your choice. Regardless of your option, it should serve you well and your kitchen escapades for many years.

Meanwhile, more and more households have outdoor kitchens in their homes. Outdoor living has become popular in the past few years. It has also redefined how homeowners entertain guests. Instead of staying and spending time indoors, outdoor living has paved the way for homeowners and guests appreciate the outside view while enjoying each other’s company.

One popular addition in many homes today is an outdoor kitchen. Aside from an outdoor cooking area, it also serves as an entertainment area for friends and family. You can install an oven, stove, and refrigerator in your outdoor kitchen. A countertop is also an essential add-on to your outdoor kitchen.

However, it is important to choose the right countertop material for the outdoor kitchen. As mentioned, there are many kinds of countertop materials you can choose from. Yet, not all of these materials are appropriate for outdoor use. That is why you should know the right kind of countertop material for your outdoor kitchen.

Why you should choose countertops that are specific for outdoor use

An outdoor countertop is a must-have for your outdoor kitchen. This is the area where you will do the food preparation and serving. As mentioned, choosing the right countertop material for your outdoor kitchen is important. For one, the countertop will be subjected to constant exposure to various outdoor elements.

Likewise, an outdoor countertop should be weather-resistant, durable, and easy to clean and maintain. Not to mention, it should look attractive as well. The type of countertop will also depend on your budget. Nevertheless, you should choose the one that will suit your outdoor kitchen needs.

Popular outdoor countertop materials

Here are some of the most appropriate countertop materials for an outdoor kitchen.

Granite

Granite kitchen countertops are considered among the top choice when it comes to outdoor countertop materials. It has a durable stone material that can tolerate all types of weather and elements. Granite is also available in different color options that won’t easily fade due to exposure to UV rays. It should also be sealed properly for long-lasting results.

Tiles

It is another countertop material that is more suitable for warmer locations. On the other hand, it is not recommended for areas with cold weather as it can crack during extreme weather conditions. Preferably, you can use either granite or porcelain tiles as it can be less prone to fading, unlike ceramic tiles.

Brick or flagstone

These materials are more commonly used as pathways for patios. However, these can also be a good outdoor countertop material. Brick or flagstone countertops look good in a rustic-themed outdoor kitchen. The materials are also porous, but you can use an acrylic sealer for easier cleaning and stain resistance.

Soapstone

This is another countertop material that can be used for outdoor kitchens. It has a dense material that is also stain and heat-resistant. There is no need for sealing and it won’t easily fade. Just make sure to apply mineral oil periodically to enhance the look of the material.

Countertop materials that should NOT be used outdoors

On the other hand, there are countertop materials that are not recommended for outdoor use. One of them is quartz countertops. For one, the color can easily fade when frequently exposed to sunlight. Formica is also not recommended as an outdoor countertop material. This material may not tolerate humidity and moisture as it also has a particleboard core.

Likewise, Formica is also susceptible to warping and deterioration when exposed to harsh outdoor elements. Concrete can also be a good outdoor countertop material. However, it should be installed properly and applied with sealant regularly to avoid staining and cracking.

Conclusion

Having an outdoor kitchen is a great idea given the popularity of outdoor living these past few years. However, you should also consider the right material you will install in the outdoor kitchen. For one, it should withstand all types of outdoor elements and ensure that it will last for years. You can hire granite countertop installers for your outdoor countertop needs. Better yet, contact the best contractors specializing in countertop replacement in Raleigh.

Selecting Granite Kitchen Countertop Color

best kitchen countertop contractor

Kitchen renovation trends come and go, but when it comes to kitchen countertop, granite is always the first choice. Regardless of being expensive, granite is durable, low-maintenance and most fine-looking countertop material. This material is available in plenty of colors and textures, making it an ultimate option for every homeowner. You can match your countertop with your existing kitchen décor. The availability of various colors and textures make it easier for you to choose the granite that matches decoration of your kitchen.

Choosing the granite countertop color

Kitchen countertop installation is a big investment. It is important that you select the right countertop color and texture. Although selection of granite countertop color is a personal and eventually long-lasting decision, you can consult with the countertop contractors, interior decorators and remodelers for best results.

Granite countertop colors

White Granite: White granite countertop make kitchen appear bigger and brighter. This color gives a clean-lined look to the kitchen. White granite slabs always come with different flecks that can provide character to a kitchen. You can select from many shades of white to sync with your kitchen décor.

Beige Granite: To get more decoration option, try beige granite. This shade gives a royal touch to the kitchen. Beige color is basically a mixture of brown and gray. The color combination offers more decoration scope, and it does not look dirty.

Brown Granite: Brown granite countertop is for people who want classic look. The brown countertops are darker, so they have some limitations with matching kitchen furniture colors. Lighter contrast shades will look good though. Brown granites are timeless piece of countertop apt for heavy duty kitchens.

Black Granite: Shine and finishing of the black granite countertops are unmatchable. These countertops are real striations of granite. With black granite you will get shiny, smooth working surface. Black granite is suitable for residential kitchens as well as commercial kitchens.

Green Granite: Green granite countertop is an ultimate choice for homeowners who are looking for something different. You can find a variety of textures and cutting in green kitchen countertops. However, it is important to find the right granite contractor.

Common Myths About Granite Countertops

best countertops

The longer something is popular, the faster myths grow about it. This is definitely true for granite. As granite strongly stands to the test of time as the finest kitchen countertop material, a lot of myths about granite are spread in the market. Granite is the first choice of homeowners for kitchen and bathroom countertops. It is because granite possesses the all the qualities that homeowners want.

A Look at the Most Common Myths About Granite

Granite is a durable, beautiful and long-lasting material. This material can enhance the beauty of place where it is installed. Many homeowners avoid granite, because they have heard rumors about granite. Countertop installation is a big and expensive decision. In order to choose the best kitchen countertop material, it is important that you take an informed decision.

Myths About Granite

Myth #1: Granite Will Stain

This is one of the more enduring myths about granite. The truth is granite is a stain resistant material. It does not get stained easily. This material has the ability to withstand nature’s elements and maintain its original beauty.

Myth #2: Granite must be sealed regularly

This is the most popular myth about granite countertops. Well, the truth is annual sealing is enough to keep granite in the good condition. However, sealing will restore the shine of granite and your countertop will look as good as new.

Myth #3: Granite will lose its shine

Well, this might be true for marble, but not for granite! Granite is very dense material. Normal kitchen or bathroom activities simply do not introduce sufficient wear and tear to the granite surface to dull it. Rest assured that your granite countertops will maintain their shine for a good number of years to come.

Myth #4: Granite is difficult to maintain

Granite is an extremely low-maintenance material. You don’t even have to worry about its cleaning, soap and water is all you need.

Myth #5: Heat will crack granite

Granite is a heat resistant material. If you purchase granite countertop from a reputable granite contractor, you will get best of granite. It means you need not have to worry about putting hot pans or pots on your granite surface.

Countertop solution and ideas!

granite countertopsBetter than anything: Granite countertops

If you have been following any latest home designing trend, then you surely know that natural stone countertops are the most preferred and talked about item in the market. And the most popular amongst these countertops is the granite countertops. They are durable as well as elegant. All these characteristic traits increases the appeal of granite countertop and it can often without delay double the beauty of your bathroom or kitchen. The granite countertops not only have a chic status, they also have a lot of other realistic benefits. They are stain resistant, heat resistant, and durable which means if you use countertop appropriately, they will never crack or peel.

Budget friendly countertop

Whether your budget is tight or you are just a frugal soul, you are surely looking out for cost-effective countertop materials, when it is the time to upgrade your kitchen. You will be really happy to learn about some budget friend granite countertops. For your happiness below information will let you know about economical yet beautiful granite countertops! Have a look:

#1: Versatile Laminate Granite Countertops: These economical countertops are tough, water resistant and easy to clean as well as install. Laminates are available in a number of finishes and color options.  It can be fabricated in various edges, but please do keep it in mind the simple the rim the less expensive the countertop. The DIY installation can prove out to be hectic with these laminated granite countertops so it’s better that you hire professionals for the countertop installation.

#2: Granite tiles: If you like the rollicking retro or the rich earthy appearance, then you might have found what you are looking for in the granite tile aisles. For much better look you can combine the Granite tiles with the Ceramic tiles to form a desired countertop. Both the Granite and ceramic tiles are durable and long lasting and above all, they are cost efficient.

These are two cost effective granite countertops available in the market which can help you to renovate the kitchen at a reasonable price. So, if you have got a desire for granite countertops installation, but cannot rationalize the cost, you can take granite tiled countertops or Versatile Laminate Granite Countertops into your consideration.

How much will it cost to replace my quartz countertops?

bathroom countertop

Countertop Options

Has it been years since your last countertop installation?  It may be time for an upgrade.  The Countertop Factory provides a nearly endless selection of different kitchen countertops and bathroom countertops!  One of our experienced countertop contractors would be happy to help you select the most durable countertop materials for your kitchen or bathroom.  We can even help to come up with a new countertop design that matches your existing home décor perfectly.  One great idea is to install matching his and hers bathroom vanities so you can both use the bathroom counter at the same time!

Countertop Materials

A few of our favorite materials to use in the bathroom include soapstone countertops, marble countertops and granite countertops.  These countertops materials are impervious to moisture, so they are very durable for bathroom use.  If you are more interested in types of countertops for the kitchen, we can help you out there as well.  We tend to favor solid surface countertops in the kitchen; your home countertop contractor can recommend the best countertop brands out there!  Installing new home countertops is a great way to add a new dash of style to your home while increasing its market value!