Your kitchen can be transformed from beautiful yet simple to simply beautiful by updating your countertop to bring style and color into your home. Your options for countertop material are endless.
Quartz countertops have been very popular among homeowners.
Engineered quartz is a man-made product formed from roughly 90 to 95 percent ground quartz and 5 to 10 percent resins and pigments. Manufacturers offer upward of 40 options, with colors from bright red to earthy linen and patterns from crocodile to concrete.
A typical engineered quartz countertop costs $68 to $105 per square foot installed.
Quartz has many bragging rights: it's tough like granite, and the resin makes the material malleable and impact resistant. Both materials offer stout durability. Quartz is also nonporous, making it resistant to stains and scratches.
This material has a leg up on natural stone when it comes to large installations. Some quartz colors can be fabricated in larger pieces with fewer seams, because jumbo slabs are available.
Most quartz products claim to be heat resistant, but that doesn't mean they're completely heat proof. As with many countertop materials, it's always best to check with the manufacturer about just how much heat the product is able to withstand.
The surface requires no sealants or waxes (either initially or for ongoing upkeep). Routine cleanup is a breeze with soap and water.
You might be tempted to go to one of the big chain home improvement stores to purchase quartz countertops. If you do, you'll have a much smaller selection to choose from. Instead, take the time and do some legwork checking out local stone yards.
Avoid any place that tries to push one brand or style over another. You should feel no pressure to pick any other stone than one that you really want.
Look for a place that handles the sale, design, fabrication and installation all in-house. By using a company that handles its own fabrication and installation, you'll be more likely to have skilled craftsmen handling your countertop renovation.
If something should happen to go wrong, you'll only have one company to deal with, and if you use someone who has been in business for years, you can probably even ask to see samples of their work right in your neighborhood.
Sharon Loccisano is a sales designer and commercial Sales professional at Prestige Stone Inc.