When it comes to choosing countertops for your kitchen or bathroom, two of the most popular options are granite and quartz. But which one is more expensive? There are a few factors to consider when comparing the costs of granite vs quartz countertops.
Durability and Longevity
Granite is generally considered more durable and longer-lasting than quartz. As a natural stone, granite is incredibly hard and resistant to scratches, heat, and stains. With proper sealing and maintenance, granite countertops can last for decades.
Quartz is an engineered stone made from roughly 90% ground natural quartz and 10% polymer resins and pigments. While less durable than granite, quartz is still very resilient and under normal use can last for 15-25 years. Quartz doesn’t require ongoing sealing like granite.
Over time, granite may prove to be a better value due to its exceptional durability and longevity. The upfront cost of granite may be higher, but it may not need replacement as frequently as quartz.
Granite slabs display unique natural patterns and colors, no two are exactly alike. Quartz offers a wide range of consistent colors and patterns thanks to its engineered nature.
Some homeowners prefer the artistic appeal and prestige of granite’s natural beauty. Others favor the uniform appearance and broader color palette available with quartz.
This factor is subjective based on personal taste, but the uniqueness of granite often increases its perceived value over the uniform engineered quartz.
Installation and Fabrication
Professional installation is required for both granite and quartz countertops. Granite is extremely heavy, reaching up to 9 pounds per square foot. Specialized handling and reinforcement under the cabinets is needed to support the weight of granite slabs.
Quartz is thinner and approximately half the weight of granite, around 4.5 pounds per square foot. The lighter weight of quartz makes fabrication and installation a bit simpler in some cases.
The labor involved in cutting, polishing, and installing granite is greater than that for quartz. Fabrication costs are typically 15-25% higher for granite vs quartz counters.
Granite requires periodic sealing to prevent stains from penetrating the surface. Resealing granite every 1-2 years is recommended for optimal performance. Quartz does not need regular sealing due to its non-porous nature.
Over time, the continual cost of sealing and protecting granite counters will impact long term expenses. Quartz generally involves lower maintenance and upkeep costs.
- Granite: Natural material subject to color variations. Rare colors and patterns are more valuable. Prices range from $50-100 per square foot installed.
- Quartz: Consistent engineered product. Simple patterns are most affordable starting around $70-80 per square foot installed. Unique styles can be $100-150 per square foot.
Are Granite or Quartz Countertops More Expensive?
When comparing total costs, granite countertops are generally more expensive than quartz. The higher material fees, fabrication labor, greater weight requiring reinforcement, and ongoing sealing and maintenance add to the overall cost difference.
However, granite’s superior durability could make it a better value in the very long term. The extreme hardness and longevity of natural granite may outweigh the higher initial investment.
Quartz offers an attractive, low maintenance alternative at a more budget-friendly price point for many homeowners. The decision ultimately comes down to your budget, kitchen usage, and personal taste.
Both granite and quartz make excellent choices for kitchen and bath countertops. Speaking to an expert designer can help weigh the pros, cons, and costs of each material specific to your home remodel.
Frequently Asked Questions About Granite vs Quartz Countertops
Is granite or quartz better for kitchen countertops?
Granite is better in terms of durability, longevity, and prestige. Quartz offers more consistent coloring, requires less maintenance, and is more affordable. Ultimately the choice depends on your priorities – both materials make excellent kitchen countertops.
Is granite or quartz more scratch resistant?
Granite is significantly more scratch resistant than quartz due to its natural hardness. Quartz can get minor superficial scratches over time under heavy use. Granite remains highly scratch resistant with proper care and maintenance.
Which material is most stain resistant?
Quartz resists stains better than granite since it never needs to be sealed. Unsealed granite can absorb stains without proper precautions. However, with regular sealing granite can become highly stain resistant.
Does quartz need to be sealed like granite?
No, quartz countertops never require sealing because they are non-porous. Granite should be sealed upon installation and resealed every 1-2 years for optimal stain protection.
Is installation harder for granite or quartz?
Granite installation is generally more complex and labor intensive due to the material’s heavier weight and need for reinforced support. Quartz does not require as much specialized handling due to its lighter weight.
Which material costs more for installation?
Installation costs are estimated to be 15-25% higher for granite compared to quartz. Extra charges are incurred for granite fabrication, transportation, reinforced undercabinet support, and more intricate installation.
When evaluating granite vs quartz countertops in terms of cost, granite is generally the more expensive option overall. The higher material cost, fabrication labor, installation demands, and ongoing sealing and maintenance contribute to the price difference.
However, granite’s beauty, longevity, and prestige make it desirable for many homeowners despite the higher initial investment. Quartz delivers an attractive alternative at a more budget-friendly price point.
Carefully examine your budget, kitchen needs, and style preferences when choosing between these two excellent countertop materials. Consult a kitchen designer to determine if granite or quartz best fits your home improvement goals.