Most people have the idea that granite countertops are remodeling budget killers, but that is not true at all. Granite countertops can be quite pricey, but it depends on the choices you make. For example, Silver Granite Marble has a limited time offer from $27 per square foot of granite countertops, installed, so you can really find a package for any budget if you know where to look.
Many factors affect the total cost of granite countertops. To make the right choices to keep to your budget, you need to know a bit about these factors. You need to know why they cost the way they do, and how you can turn it to your advantage.
By doing a bit of research, you will find the granite countertops that suit your budget without sacrificing looks or quality. Breaking down the costs of granite countertops will put you on the right path.
All granite is durable and beautiful, but some are more common than others are, which can affect the price per square foot. Suppliers rate granite by levels according to their rarity, with level 1 having the simplest patterns and most common colors, and level 3 having the most complex and exotic colors.
This type of rating will depend on the current market. What may be level 3 today may be level 2 or 1 tomorrow, depending on the supply of the granite. It does not have anything to do with the quality of the granite itself, so Level 1 granite may be just as good as or even better than Level 3 granite in terms of durability or heat resistance.
However, if you choose Level 3 granite for your kitchen countertops, you will pay double or even triple the price for it than if you choose Level 1 granite. If you are not married to the Level 3 granite, you might as well choose Level 1 granite to bring down your overall costs significantly.
Another major factor of the cost of your granite countertops is the source of the granite. In most cases, your local countertop specialists will have a large number of granite slabs in their showrooms that come from all corners of the globe. While one slab may look similar to another, they may have different prices per square foot because of where they came from. For example, granite from Italy may be more expensive than granite from Brazil, because the shipping cost for the Italian granite was higher.
If you want to get the best deal for your granite countertops, choose granite that comes from somewhere nearer at hand. Better yet, ask your countertop specialists for advice.
Standard thicknesses for granite slabs are 2 cm and 3 cm. Typically, you choose 3-cm slabs for kitchen countertops because these are thick enough not to require additional support, especially for longer countertops. The 2-cm slabs are good for short countertops such as bathroom vanities.
However, as you have probably guessed, the 3-cm slabs are more expensive than the 2-cm slabs. You can choose the 2-cm slabs for your kitchen countertops if your countertops are short or you are willing to put in additional support such as plywood. The thinner slab can do the job as long as you support it properly.
You may not be aware, but granite comes in not only slabs, but also modules and tiles. Modules are like tiles, but larger, and tiles come in standard sizes.Of course, the ideal type of granite you should use for kitchen countertops is a slab, mostly because they have fewer seams. This makes them easy to clean and look better besides. However, modules and tiles can work at a pinch so you can cut costs.
Typically, slabs will cost you between $40 and $75 per square foot, installed. The cost of using tiles instead will drop that to anywhere between $6 and $10 per square foot. Tiles would be a good choice if you were putting it on top of an existing counter.
In fact, you can do it yourself, which will help you save quite a bit of money. Just keep in mind that granite tiles use epoxy instead of mortar, and you do not leave any space between the tiles as you would with ceramic tiles. Of course, it will not look as good as slabs, but not too bad, especially if you have a contemporary kitchen.
When it comes to modular granite, the cost savings would not be so clear. You can DIY it, and it costs between $25 and $40 per square foot. The problem is finding them. You can find granite tiles in hardware stores, but not granite modules. You might be able to find them in countertop supply showrooms, but they are not very popular, so your choices may be somewhat limited. Overall, stick to either tiles or slabs.
Another major factor in the cost of granite countertops is cutting and putting it in. This is presuming you choose slabs. If you choose tiles, you can probably skip this section.
If you did choose slabs, expect your fabrication and installation cost to be about the same as the cost of the granite itself. Fabricating granite is a complex process requiring special machinery and extensive skills. This is for not only making the sink cutouts precisely, but also hewing out the edge profiles.
The fewer cutouts you require will definitely lower your overall costs. In addition, if you choose a simple edge such as square or bullnose, you might get it free of charge. However, if you choose an ogee or other premium edge type, you will definitely pay extra for that.
You can afford granite countertops if you make the right choices. The factors above are the major ones affecting the final bill. Of course, if you choose to contract with a reliable countertop specialist, you can probably get the same advice. Silver Marble Granite is the most reliable you will find in the areas of Washington D.C., Alexandria, Arlington, Falls Church, Fairfax, Chantilly, Herndon, Centreville, among others.
We are your ONE-STOP SHOP for home improvement, and we specialize in providing you with the best granite countertops in Northern Virginia. You can visit our showroom in Sterling, VA to see the colors of actual slabs before you buy. We will walk you through each one, and identify the slabs that are true granite.
We work only with the best brands in the business, and can offer better prices and faster turnarounds than big box stores. Aside from granite and marble, we also carry top brands in engineered quartz, including Silestone, MSI, Cambria, and Caesarstone.
Check out our website for some of the best deals in kitchen countertops and other products to make your home a better place. While you are at it, take advantage of our free quote. You will be amazed at the deals we can offer you!