The kitchen is easily one of the most important rooms in the house. The gathering of family and friends for the holidays, special occasions, or just daily conversation at the dinner table provides the memories that make a house a home. However, not all kitchens instantly provide the ambience for which homeowners seek.
Renovations and updates in the kitchen have the highest return on invest for a home’s resale value. Changes such as changing out countertops, installing new floors, or changing cabinets all fall under types of renovations. Some estimates state that a well done renovation would add up to 92.9% of the cost to the resale value of the home.
Very common changes that have a big impact are kitchen countertops. Choosing countertops often are based on function, durability, and appearance. The most popular types of counter tops are: laminate, stone, and ceramic tiles.
Laminate countertops are priced the lowest, and can come in a variety of colors and patterns. However, since laminate is often comprised of mainly bonded paper & particle board, it is prone to chips or scratches. Maintenance on laminate is relatively easy, however there are things owners should avoid. Avoid cutting directly on the countertop since the soft laminate could be easily cut, do not stand or sit on the countertop because weight could separate the piece from the wall, also be careful not to burn cigarette butts on the countertop as they are nearly impossible to erase, and be careful not to let water sit or stand for extended periods of time.
Stone countertops include the most popular countertop in recent years, granite. Not only does granite offer beautiful coloration that is attractive, it is also incredibly durable. Marble, and other types of countertops are included in this grouping, however granite tends to be the most popular. Maintenance for stone is also easy, be sure to avoid using abrasive cleaning pads since they could dull the polished finish. Cleaning the countertops can be achieved with a cleaner comprised of one part water to one part bleach. Also a licensed contractor can polish countertops to remove some stains, scratches and burns.
Another form of countertops is ceramic tile, which is priced somewhere in between stone and laminate. However, many complaints come from the fact that tile chips easily. Many homeowners also complain that cleaning the grout between the tile is very difficult.
If you wish to change the counter tops in your kitchen, look into professional companies. The licensed contractors can more easily handle any problems that arise, and some companies also offer limited warranties on their products. Also, researching companies and their practices could help make your decision.