Kitchen Countertops: The Granite vs. Quartz Question

kitchen countertopPeople often call the kitchen the heart of the home. After all, it’s where family gatherings and special occasions occur. It comes as no surprise that it’s one of the most renovated parts of the house. In fact, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHBS) reports that 78% of renovation projects include the kitchen.

One question that pops up during these home renovation projects is what material should the countertop be made of? The two most popular options are granite and quartz. Here’s a rundown of their characteristics so you can choose the ideal one for your kitchen.

Granite Countertops

Granite is a favorite among homeowners because it exudes an air of elegance. It’s a naturally occurring stone quarried from the earth in enormous chunks. Workers then cut the slab and polish it into the commissioned countertop shape.

Because it’s a natural substance, the appearance of granite countertops is not uniform; every piece is unique. The material is resilient, as well. Colors on a granite countertop never fade and placing hot kitchenware or slicing items right on granite won’t damage it.

Granite, however, needs regular maintenance. Homeowners need to seal them yearly because they’re porous.

Quartz Countertops

kitchen countertopWhile granite has been the material of choice for countertops, the NAHB reports that quartz is quickly gaining ground in the market. In 2010, 73% of designers said they’re using quartz in their kitchen projects. Those figures rose to 89% by 2015.

Quartz appeals to homeowners because it is a low-maintenance, man-made stone. It’s formed from 90% quartz and binders like resins and polymers. A high ratio of quartz paves the way for durability and resistance to stains. Moreover, it’s non-porous, so it doesn’t require sealants and wax.

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For all its advantages, quartz has one weakness: it is intolerant to high temperatures. So, if you plan to place hot pans directly on your counter surface, don’t go for quartz.

At the end of the day, you get to decide what material goes on to your countertop. Granite and quartz each have their advantages. Weigh them carefully to make a smart and practical decision for your home.