Whether you’re making a simple sandwich or an elaborate evening meal, all culinary creations require a countertop. Choosing a quality material for this vital part of your kitchen ensures increased durability despite its constant use.

While some interior designers have started introducing stainless steel countertops into modern homes, many homeowners still favor the longevity of natural stone counters. Consider the potential drawbacks of stainless steel counters before upgrading your kitchen.

Stainless Steel vs. Natural Stone Countertops

Stainless steel countertops and natural stone variants offer superior antimicrobial properties — but that’s where their similarities end. Understanding the differences between these popular counter materials will help you make a more informed decision for your kitchen renovation.

In one Kitchen & Bath Design News survey, 52% of professionals said countertops are increasingly integral to kitchen designs. Choosing the correct material for your needs helps ensure a lasting design and maximum aesthetic appeal for current and future homeowners.

Stainless Steel Overview

Stainless steel counters offer professional chefs polish and hygiene. While these surfaces also give residential kitchens a sleek appeal, they are not the most practical choice for remodels. Here are some of the disadvantages of stainless steel countertops.

  • Expense: Stainless steel countertops are expensive to buy and install. According to HomeAdvisor, homeowners can expect to pay between $80 and $225 per square foot — an average price of $7,500 for a 50-square-foot counter.
  • Noise: Stainless steel counters are noisy. The clang of utensils, pots, and plates against the counter can be loud. Hard surfaces also create echoes and other acoustic issues. Lining the steel with padding reduces the noise, but comes with an extra installation fee.
  • Maintenance: Cooking a meal is a hands-on process. While you prepare your ingredients, your fingers will contact substances that transfer to your counters. These smudgy fingerprints stand out on stainless steel counters, making frequent cleaning and polishing paramount.
  • Wear and tear: Your counters’ shine may not last long if you’re a frequent cook. Stainless steel is a malleable metal, making it prone to scratches, dents, and other imperfections.
  • Cold aesthetic: While some home chefs treasure stainless steel countertops’ hygienic properties, they resemble surgical tables. This distinct style does not fit every home.
You Might Also Like:  Kitchen Upgrades That Increase Home Value

Natural Stone Overview

Natural Stone Overview

Natural stone counters include options such as marble, quartz, and granite. These materials’ durability is popular for kitchens. Here’s what makes them unique.

Marble

Marble is synonymous with luxury, and countertops of this type add a stylish element to your kitchen design. Aside from offering excellent heat resistance, they also hold up well against general wear and tear.

Marble is less expensive than stainless steel countertops, but not by much — HomeAdvisor estimates the average cost of marble counters is $60 per square foot. However, this sturdy material will last for years making it a worthwhile investment.

Quartz

Choosing counters that complement your kitchen’s color scheme achieves a striking look. Quartz countertops offer you far more color flexibility for a more cohesive design. They’re also relatively low-maintenance, as they don’t require frequent resealing.

Quartz is less heat-resistant than marble and natural stone, so you should put trivets or oven mitts under hot kitchenware.

Granite

Granite is highly resistant to wear and tear, making it the ideal surface for preparing food, doing homework, and working from home. As 72% of professionals recognize the need for multifunctional counters, this is an essential consideration. There’s also the option to choose large-format tiles for a seamless finish.

Granite surfaces require periodic resealing to ensure protection from stains and damage. You’ll also need to assess your cabinets’ structural integrity to be certain they can support granite’s weight.

Quartzite

Quartzite is a natural stone, making it a sturdy option for high-traffic kitchens. Its superior UV resistance also makes it a popular choice for interior designs with maximum natural light.

You’ll also need to consider installation costs if you’re weighing the benefits of quartzite counters. These large slabs require specialized cutting, making them more expensive.

You Might Also Like:  A First-Time Homeowner's Guide to Kitchen and Bathroom Renovations

Factors to Consider Before Buying Stainless Steel or Natural Countertops

As kitchen renovations are a significant investment, you want to choose countertops that stand the test of time. Look at the following factors before committing to stainless steel counters.

  • Budget: The money you set aside for home renovations will impact your material choices. Consider the expense of stainless steel versus other countertop materials in your decision.
  • Home style: Contemporary homes lend themselves to sleek, metallic elements such as stainless steel counters. On the other hand, these materials may look out of place in farmhouse styles. Ensure a cohesive design by matching your counters with your home style.
  • Available time: Maintenance-free counter options are ideal for busy people who don’t have time for a rigorous cleaning schedule. Similarly, not having to reseal your counter will save time.
  • Personal preference: You spend several hours a day in your kitchen — make it a place you enjoy. Compiling a list of your favorite kitchen features will help you guide your countertop choices.
  • Resale value: A stylish kitchen will help you secure a better resale price if you plan to sell your home soon. While stainless steel is a growing trend, natural stone options have a wide appeal.

Choose Quality Countertops From Lesher Marble

Stainless steel counters are growing in demand due to their unique style, sustainable materials, and favorable heat resistance. However, the drawbacks of stainless steel counters prompt homeowners to consider this option carefully.

Lesher Natural Stone, Quartz, & Tile is a family-run business that recognizes the value of a beautiful and functional kitchen. Choose superior marble, quartz, granite, or quartzite countertops to create your dream kitchen and enjoy it for years. Explore our extensive range of natural stone countertops online, or reach out to our team for expert product guidance!

Choose Quality Countertops From Lesher Marble