Quartz countertops have become increasingly popular in recent years as a stylish, durable, and low-maintenance option for kitchen and bathroom remodeling projects. However, many homeowners wonder exactly how much they can expect to pay for quartz countertops. In this detailed guide, we will break down the factors that influence quartz countertop pricing, provide average cost ranges, and give tips for getting the best deal.
What is Quartz?
Before diving into specifics on cost, it is helpful to understand exactly what quartz countertops are. Quartz countertops are made from engineered stone slabs comprised of approximately 90% ground natural quartz crystals combined with polymer resins and pigments.
This combination creates a durable, non-porous material that is resistant to scratching, staining, and heat. The resins allow quartz to be molded into countertops with seamless appearance. Meanwhile, the quartz crystals give an elegant, sparkling look. Pigments are added to achieve various color and pattern options.
Quartz Countertop Cost Considerations
Several factors come into play when determining the total installed price of quartz countertops in your home. Here are some of the key considerations:
Quartz Slab Price per Square Foot
The biggest component affecting overall quartz countertop cost is the price of the slabs themselves. Slab prices range from value options under $50 per square foot up to premium designer brands costing over $100 per square foot. In general, expect to pay between $50-80 per square foot for mid-range, good quality quartz.
Color and Pattern
Basic solid color quartz slabs with minimal veining patterns tend to be the most affordable options. Multi-colored slabs with bold patterns, special finishes like metallic flecks, and unique designs cost more. Popular patterns and colors can command a premium price.
Standard quartz thickness is 3/4″. Going up to 1 1/4” or 1 1/2” thick quartz adds cost but provides more visual mass and durability. Thicker quartz may be recommended for floors or heavy use commercial projects.
Fancy edge profiles like an ogee or bevel add complexity versus a standard eased or pencil edge. The more detailed the edge, the higher the fabrication cost.
Adding a matching quartz backsplash increases material needed but gives a built-in finished look. Backsplashes often add $10-$15 per linear foot.
The brand and reputation of the quartz manufacturer impacts price as well. Ceasarstone, Cambria, Silestone and other big names come with advertising costs factored into their slab pricing. High-end designers like Cosentino Dekton and Compac charge a premium. Lesser known brands tend to be more budget friendly.
Your countertop fabricator charges for cutting, edging, polishing, seaming, and installing the quartz slabs. Typical fabrication and installation fees range from $70-$150 per linear foot depending on your area and the complexity of the job.
Demolition and Disposal
If you have existing countertops that need removal, costs for demolition, haul away, and disposal/recycling fees also need to be included.
With all these factors at play, it becomes clear why quartz countertop prices can vary so widely. Keep these considerations in mind when comparing quotes to make sure you are accounting for all the variables.
Average Quartz Countertop Costs
Looking at typical per square foot quartz prices:
- Low end: $45-$65 per sq ft
- Middle range: $65-$85 per sq ft
- High end: $85-$125+ per sq ft
According to the Remodeling Magazine 2021 Cost vs. Value report, the average cost of a midrange quartz countertop installation falls around $80 per square foot installed.
For a typical 25 square foot straight run galley kitchen with budget-friendly options selected, total costs often land in the $2000-$2500 range.
For larger gourmet kitchens with premium quartz, fancy edges, and lots of decorative accents, total costs can easily exceed $10,000 in materials and installation.
However, quartz does not have to break the bank. With some smart design choices and shopping around, costs for beautiful quartz countertops can potentially dip well under $2000 even for larger kitchens.
Cost Saving Tips
Here are some great ways to get the high-end elegance and easy maintenance of quartz counters without overspending:
Find Remnant Deals
Oftentimes, quartz slab suppliers and fabricators have remnant pieces left over after completing large jobs. These remnants can offer substantial discounts off full slab prices, sometimes 50% or more. Just keep in mind remnant deals limit color/size options.
Select an Affordable Brand
Stick with good quality middle-of-the-road brands like MSI, Vicostone, or Corian rather than the most expensive luxury designers. Visit multiple slab yards to find the best deals.
Choose a Simple Style
Opt for a solid color and minimal veining as opposed to bold patterns which add cost. Also, stay away from special finishes that increase price.
Standard Edge is Fine
A standard eased or slightly rounded edge works beautifully for most quartz countertop applications. Skip fancy edge profiles that add fabrication time and expense.
Know your measurements and use them to minimize seams and scrap. Strategic layout can also allow you to utilize remnants.
Offer to handle removing your old countertops yourself rather than paying your fabricator. Check for recycling options as well to avoid landfill disposal fees.
Shop Off Season
Winter and fall months tend to be slower seasons in the quartz business, so you may be able to negotiate better deals during this time.
With the right choices, you can install gorgeous quartz countertops that look like they cost far more than the actual price tag. Do your homework, seek multiple bids, and use these cost saving tips to get the best value on your kitchen or bath remodeling project.
Factors That Increase Quartz Countertop Prices
While the tips above can help save on quartz costs, there are also some factors that will increase your total price. Being aware of these items allows you to make informed decisions if any of these higher-end options are worth the added expense for your situation.
Larger Surface Area
The more countertop square footage needed, the more slabs required. Volume can sometimes lead to contractor discounts on materials, but typically a larger surface area means higher overall project price.
Specialty Edge Profiles
Unique edge styles like a bevel, bullnose, or ogee edge add complexity and fabrication time versus a simple eased or pencil edge. Special edges cost $10-$20+ more per linear foot.
Thick Quartz Slabs
Going up to 1 1⁄4” or 1 1⁄2” thickness rather than standard 3⁄4” slabs substantially increases material costs. Thicker quartz is over 50% more in price per square foot.
Special aggregate blends, creative designs, and bold veining patterns can command premium slab prices. These special styles often cost $20+ more per square foot.
Matching your countertops with an integrated quartz backsplash increases material square footage and fabrication work needed. Quartz backsplashes typically add $15-$25 per linear foot.
Full Height Wall Applications
Utilizing quartz counters on any walls above standard backsplash height requires made-to-order slab sizes and precision cutting. Expect to pay 30-50% more for special sizing and installation.
Features like inlaid designs, creative mitered edges, laminated textures, and LED lighting add complexity and custom fabrication fees. Each accent adds incremental costs.
Special expedited turnaround due to poor planning or last minute changes almost always entails surcharges for the fast work. Avoid rushing your project timeline when possible.
For homes located far from the fabrication shop, travel time, fuel costs, and transport logistics add to the installation charges. Delivery fees are usually by distance and time.
Some luxury builders or high valued homes require fabricators to carry special liability policies that get tacked onto the job quote. Out of area installers may also need local licenses.
Demo of Multiple Layers
If you have tile or laminate over older surfaces, costs accumulate quick for each layer the crew must demolish and haul away prior to the new installation.
By consciously minimizing any of these premium options only where truly needed, you can take advantage of quartz benefits without maxing out your budget. Focus spending on the features with the biggest impact for your home.
What is Included in Quartz Countertop Installation?
When reviewing an estimate and comparing bids for quartz countertops, be sure you understand exactly what is covered. Here are the typical tasks included in a complete professional quartz countertop installation:
- Template creation: Fabricator visits to take exact measurements of existing countertops and create a template guide for cutting slabs.
- Slab selection: Choosing the color, pattern, and specific slabs at the fabricator’s warehouse.
- Fabrication: Precisely cutting, edging, and polishing slabs per the measurements and chosen edge details.
- Seaming and bonding: Joining slab sections with seam placement planned for minimal noticeability.
- Pointing and tuning: Making final adjustments like sizing for gaps or filling any natural voids in quartz.
- Securing cutouts: Cutting holes for sinks and cooktops and attaching decorative edging strips as needed.
- Pre-installation inspection: Double checking fit and finish at shop prior to bringing pieces on site.
- Tear out of old counters: Removal and disposal of your existing countertops if needed.
- Installation: Securing quartz pieces in place, adjusting as needed for a perfect fit.
- Integration with other finishes: Connecting countertops properly with adjacent backsplashes, flooring, walls, and plumbing fixtures.
- Final polish: Last touch ups to any seams, edges, corners for a flawless appearance.
- Job site clean up: Removing all debris, boxes, tools, and supplies.
- Customer walk through: Reviewing the finished installation and addressing any final concerns.
Reputable fabricators handle all these steps start to finish as part of their quartz installation process. Understanding the full scope allows you to ensure bids are equivalent.
Quartz Countertop Cost Per Square Foot by Brand
Quartz pricing varies not only due to the factors above, but also by manufacturer. Here is an overview of average per square foot quartz slab costs by major brands:
Caesarstone is one of the most recognized premium quartz brands. Their distinct designs and quality warrant a higher price tag, averaging $70-$120 per square foot.
Known for natural stone-like visuals, Cambria quartz ranges from $65-$105 per square foot installed based on style.
Silestone offers a wide array of colors and patterns generally priced from $55-$85 per square foot installed.
With excellent durability and an extensive color selection, MSI Q Premium Natural Quartz runs $45-$75 per square foot installed.
DuPont’s Corian quartz delivers style and strength for an average price of $50-$80 per square foot installed.
A mid-tier brand gaining popularity, Vicostone quartz averages $45-$70 per square foot installed. Great budget option.
Unrelated to Caesarstone, Caesar Quartz offers affordable quality at $45-$65 per square foot. Great value.
Keep in mind pricing depends on your exact color choice, region, and other cost factors already outlined. But this gives a helpful ballpark estimate on cost differences between major brands.
Does Quartz Color Affect the Price?
While there are always exceptions, quartz colors do play a role in impacts on pricing. Here are some general guidelines:
- Solid whites and blacks tend to be the most affordable options
- Light tones like creams and grays are modestly priced
- Mid-range pricing for classic patterns with subtle veining
- Bolds like reds and blues carry a slight premium
- Multi-colored and busy designs cost more
- Specialty finishes add more – metallic, glassy, glossy, etched, etc.
Again, you can find budget and premium options in nearly any color. But sticking with classics like white, gray, and single tones can save dollars per square foot over exotics.
How Does Thick Quartz Impact Cost?
Standard quartz slabs come in 3⁄4” thickness. While this dominates residential use, 11⁄4” and 11⁄2” options are growing in popularity. But thickness substantially impacts material pricing.
3⁄4” thick quartz ranges $50-$120 per square foot
11⁄4” thick quartz jumps up to $75-$175 per square foot
11⁄2” thick options run $90-$200+ per square foot
Thicker quartz costs 50-100% more but provides:
- Greater feeling of mass and weight
- Increased durability for high traffic
- Minimal flexing for larger spans
- Ability to create waterfall islands and floating profiles
- More seamless appearance for wall applications
Thicker quartz can enhance strength and visual appeal but also bucks up the budget significantly. Only go thicker if function demands.
Quartz Countertop Prices Compared to Other Materials
How does the cost of quartz stack up against other popular countertop materials? Here is a side by side price comparison:
- Laminate countertops: $15-$40 per sq ft installed
- Butcher block: $30-$70 per sq ft installed
- Tile: $15-$50 per sq ft installed
- Granite: $50-$150 per sq ft installed
- Marble: $60-$125 per sq ft installed
- Soapstone: $70-$120 per sq ft installed
- Stainless steel: $70-$150 per sq ft installed
- Solid surface: $50-$100 per sq ft installed
As you can see, quartz falls right in the middle of the pack – more affordable than natural stone but pricier than tile or laminate. When factoring in durability and maintenance, quartz often emerges as the ideal combination of value and performance.
How Long Will Quartz Countertops Last?
One major advantage of quartz over materials like granite or marble is longevity. With proper care, quartz countertops can easily last a lifetime.
The resilient engineered stone and nonporous properties allow quartz counters to withstand decades of use without significant signs of wear. The material resists scratches, stains, chips and cracks extremely well.
Manufacturers back their quartz with 10, 15, or lifetime warranties. With routine cleaning, these counters should maintain their good as new sparkle and integrity for the entire time you own your home.
Quartz Countertop Installation Cost
In addition the raw materials cost of the slabs themselves, professional fabrication and installation also factors heavily into your total investment. Typical quartz fabrication and installation costs range from:
- Economy/Discount: $40-$65 per linear ft
- Standard Fabricator: $65-$95 per linear ft
- High-End Fabricator: $95-$150+ per linear ft
The fabrication shop charges encompass all the cutting, edging, bonding, and prep work involved before arrival to your home. Installation fees then cover physical placement, connections to sinks/faucets, cleanup, and other onsite labor.
For the typical 25 square foot kitchen counter, total fabrication and installation fees run $2000-$4000 on top of the slab materials cost. Be sure to get this itemized in all your bids.
Is DIY Installation Realistic for Quartz?
While a skilled DIYer can certainly install quartz counters themselves, the scale of the material does require professional cutting and edging. Attempting these steps without proper tools can lead to cracked slabs.
You can save on labor by:
- Purchasing pre-cut quartz kits for simple layouts
- Arranging for a mobile fabricator to visit your home to template and cut slabs onsite
This allows you to handle the actual placing and securing of countertops yourself if confident. However, the heavy pieces plus risk of damaging the quartz make full DIY quartz installs inadvisable for most homeowners.
How Long Does It Take to Install Quartz Countertops?
A typical quartz countertop installation timeline goes as follows:
- Template: 30 minutes – 1 hour onsite
- Fabrication: 1-2 weeks (rush orders in 3-5 days for a surcharge)
- Installation: 1-2 days depending on size
So from starting the project to completion, allow 2-3 weeks total. Onsite work is done in just a few days but the slab cutting and edging does take 1-2 weeks depending on the fabricator’s backlog.
Should I Hire a Countertop Installer or General Contractor?
Quartz countertop installers and general contractors each offer pros and cons:
Countertop Installer Pros
- Focused expertise solely on counters
- Direct relationship for design input
- Competitive pricing due to low overhead
- Greater schedule flexibility
General Contractor Pros
- Single point of responsibility
- Seamless coordination of all trades
- Established relationships with subcontractors
- May have greater buying power for discounts
If your project