Recently I had a customer ask about the difference between using granite for her counter tops vs concrete counter tops. After some research on my part, I found there are quite a few differences between granite countertops and concrete countertops, the biggest difference being cost. The upkeep with concrete counter tops requires a lot of work as well.
The biggest advantage I can find in using concrete is the wide variety of colors to choose from.
The concrete can be tinted to any color you choose to use in your countertop. There are a few textures to use as well. After these two advantages, I could not find any other advantage over using concrete rather than granite.
Concrete is one of the most expensive types of countertops you can use. The average cost is $100 per sq. ft. Compare that to the average granite installation at $45 to $55 per sq. ft., you can see the big difference. The other biggest disadvantage is the up keep. You must seal the concrete on a regular basis. Depending upon your time spent in the kitchen, you may have to seal it every month. This can get costly depending upon your sq. footage. Concrete countertops are not usually a few days process. After the template and molds are made, they must be poured and cured before being brought out to your home for installation. As far as cleanliness, concrete is the middle of the road.
The number one reason for using granite is the look.
If you are selling your home, the fastest way to impress the buyer is with granite countertops. Besides tile, granite is the oldest material used in building to date. There are many different types of granite to choose from. Most granite comes from Brazil, India, and Italy. Other countries with granite quarries are Africa and China.
The cost of granite varies depending upon the rarity and supply and demand. The average cost of granite installed is between $45 and $55 per sq. ft. There are a few texture techniques available for granite. Leathering, river rocked, honed, brushed, and of course, polished are a few of the finishes available with granite.
Another advantage of granite is that granite is virtually scratch resistant. You can cut and prepare food right on the surface. The only two things that scratch granite are granite and diamond.
Remember, if you ask for a piece of granite to use for a decorative piece, you must put some type of protective covering on the underside of it to protect your granite countertops. Granite is also heat resistant. Hot plates and skillets could be placed right on the surface without damage. Granite is the most durable and best looking source for your countertops. The most important advantage, I think, in using granite is that no two slabs are exactly alike so, your granite countertop is a one of a kind countertop.