12 January 2009

First thing you should do is identify or write down your goals on what it is you want to achieve with your new kitchen or remodel. This will help you identify certain types of kitchen countertops that fit your objectives or needs.
There are wide ranges of countertop choices available, each has their own distinct advantages and disadvantages. Here some question to help you what you want for your countertops :
  1. Are you going strictly for a look and feel that you have your heart set on, regardless of any other decision factors?
  2. Are you looking for practicality and something that is easily maintainable and affordable?
  3. How do you intend on using your kitchen countertops? Do you do a lot of cooking and food preparation or will your countertops see less use?
  4. What kind of long term durability are you looking for? Do you want your kitchen countertops to look the same 10 years from now, with no visible signs of aging, wear or patina?
  5. What level of maintenance are you willing to put in?
  6. Do you want surfacing that is more environmentally-friendly?
Well, after answer your question, you may dwarf all the list for countertops. Here are some additional points to keep in mind before you choose your kitchen countertops :
  • Stone countertops such as granite are naturally porous and will need to be sealed in order to maintain their stain resistance. Stone is also heavy so your cabinets and supporting structure will need to handle the weight.
  • Laminate kitchen countertops are durable, affordable and can be found in a multitude of different colors and patterns, some that mimic the look of natural stone. There are also edge treatments such as a wood edge or beveled edge that virtually eliminate the dark line typically seen on square edges of laminate countertops.
  • No kitchen countertop material is perfect although some come close from a durability and minimal-maintenance perspective. But don't think that they're indestructible. Understanding that a little care and maintenance is required should help avoid disappointment down the road.
  • Countertop surfaces vary in their strengths and weaknesses so take advantage of that. Don't be afraid to mix up materials within your kitchen. Use butcher block for a dedicated cutting area and a more delicate natural stone like marble for less-used areas you'd like to show off.
See The Most Popular Kitchen Countertops I and The Most Popular Kitchen Countertops II for more information about type of Countertops available.

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