What to think about when buying kitchen worktops
We expect a lot from our kitchen worktops: they need to be tough enough to stand up to daily use as well as create the right vibe for our homes. If you’re replacing your worktops on a budget, you may fear that you’ll lose out on durability or looks. The good news is that there are options to suit all budgets, from cheaper laminates to more expensive natural stones. So, with a bit of planning, you can get the best of both worlds. Always compare the longevity of different materials, as investing more initially can save money later on.
Mix and match
If you’ve fallen in love with the looks and practicality of a more expensive material but you’re on a tight budget, mix and match materials to make sure you don’t overspend. For example, heat-and scratch-resistant ceramic is ideal for high-use areas such as around the hob and sink. You can then use more affordable wood or laminate elsewhere. Mixing materials not only helps you to stay on budget but can also be more visually interesting.
Set your budget
When budgeting for your kitchen worktops, be sure to think about installation costs. For example, natural stones, quartz and solid surfaces need professional installation. You may be able to fit more affordable materials (think laminate and some woods) yourself depending on your level of skill, which will save you money.
Consider additional factors
Budget may ultimately dictate which kitchen worktop you choose, but there are other questions worth considering before splashing your cash. For example:
How robust does your worktop need to be? For instance, marble looks stunning but is easily stained and scratched so it may not be ideal for a young family. Consider a hard-wearing, non-porous engineered stone instead.
What look do you want? If you like a smooth, glossy aesthetic, research the pros and cons of glass. If you prefer something that changes with age, perhaps a copper work surface is more your style?
Think about maintenance
Always consider how much time you’re willing to spend looking after your kitchen worktops. Solid wood, for example, needs sealing at least once a year. By contrast, man-made solid-surface worktops such as Corian (a blend of natural materials and acrylic) demand very little TLC: just a gentle clean with soap and water or a mild detergent.
Do your research
It’s essential not to rush the decision-making process when it comes to choosing a kitchen worktop. Take time to do your research and, if possible, visit showrooms with a good selection of surfaces. Order samples of your favourite materials so you can see how they will look in your home, and view them in different lights to get a true sense of their colour and texture.
Featured image: Lauren Post’s (@thelittleterracedhouse) beautiful kitchen.
Want more? Dip back into the archive to see our other blogs designed to help you tackle home renovation.