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Guest Post:  5 Countertop Costs You May Not Have Considered

Guest Post: 5 Countertop Costs You May Not Have Considered

New countertops can change the look of a room, creating an instant update.  But before you order your new countertops, be sure you know what you will get for your money!

There are many countertop materials to choose from — granite, quartz, solid surface, concrete, tile, laminate, wood, marble, slate, soapstone, stainless steel, and recycled materials. All of these materials have their pros and cons and vary widely in terms of price. No matter which material you decide best fits your lifestyle, new countertops are sure to change the appearance of the entire room.

Kitchen countertopsNew countertops can make a room feel larger, cozier, more modern, airier, more natural, or just about anything you want. Selecting your new countertops can be an exciting process.  It can also be daunting because there is so much to consider including material, color, edge profile, and staying within your budget. When you’re trying to stay within your budget the last thing you need are surprises; with that in mind, here are five countertop costs you may not have thought of:

1.)    Out with the old, in with the new – You’ve just put in an order for your new countertops, but hold on just a second…what about your existing countertops?  Those old countertops have to go!  Depending on the material of your existing countertops you may be able to remove and dispose of them yourself; however, if you’ve got a heavier material in place such as granite, the task is going to be difficult if not impossible. Plus, even if you mange to remove them, do you think your garbage man is going to haul any heavy material away? The company installing your new countertops will (in most cases) remove and dispose of your existing countertops…for a price. Make sure to ask your countertop dealer about this before you place an order so you don’t end up in a bind!

2.)    Everything but the kitchen sink – If you’re having new countertops installed in your kitchen or bathroom, there’s a good chance you’re going to be getting a new sink as well. That means plumbing will need to be disconnected and reconnected. If you’re not particularly handy, you may want to have someone else handle this little detail. The company installing your countertops may be able to take care of this for you (again, for a price), but depending on your area and the specifics of what you need done, you may have to call in a plumber.

3.)    Would you like us to order that – There are many, many colors to choose from once you’ve selected your countertop material. If you settle on a color your countertop dealer doesn’t carry, have no fear – it can almost certainly be ordered. If you decide to order a color be prepared to pay extra. You may be charged shipping and handling for the material. In addition, you may be charged for the entire sheet(s) or slab(s) of material even if fabrication of your countertop only uses part of it. This is because your countertop dealer is on the hook for the entire price of the sheet(s) or slab(s). If you are going to be charged for all of the material rather than just the part you use, talk to your countertop dealer about doing something with the leftovers. It may not cost much more to have the remains fabricated into a vanity or some other fixture.  Another option is to see if your countertop dealer has a remnant available in a similar color instead of special-ordering your countertop material.  This may save you money in the long run, if you are flexible about your color or pattern.edge profiles

4.)    Feeling on edge – Once you’ve picked your countertop material and color you need to pick your edge profile. Depending on the material you’ve selected, there are different options available. Don’t get too excited yet. Typically, one edge profile is standard:  eased. Any other edge will cost you extra, and the cost can add up quickly! Find out what the standard edge is, and have your countertop dealer give you the price with the standard versus your preferred edge before you make your final decision.

Countertop Cut-out

Sink Cutout in Stone Countertop Image Credit: Cutout, DSC_8525 by 150hp at flickr.com

5.)    Cut it out – Depending on your countertop dealer, you may be charged for each hole that needs to be cut into your countertop, including the kitchen sink, bar sink, range top, etc.  There may also be an additional charge for undermount sinks in granite, quartz or solid surface countertops, as the countertop edges around the sink need to be polished for a finished look.  Make sure the quote you receive from your countertop dealer accurately includes all the holes you’ll need. Unfortunately, this is a cost you’re pretty much stuck with. Your only real option is to get your countertop from a different dealer. You should never attempt to cut the holes on your own – the price for a replacement countertop will be much steeper than just paying for the cutouts.

When it comes to getting new countertops, you can stay within a budget – you just need to be aware of all the different aspects involved with the process. Until you know otherwise, assume that everything costs extra! Carefully read the quote given to you by the countertop dealer to make sure that nothing was forgotten by you or the company. Following these steps will help ensure you get a new countertop in no time…without any surprises or breaking the bank!


Article contributed by Alex Webb on behalf of Concepts – providing Cincinnati countertops since 2003. Alex Webb is a home improvement show addict who loves to decorate on a budget. Alex has worked with a variety of countertop materials and enjoys passing along her knowledge to others. 

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