Relocate to Wisconsin : What is "the TOPS" in Countertops ?

What is "the TOPS" in Countertops ?

  Countertops...bathroom, kitchen, buffet....Our clients know that we research everything we do and source materials, contractors, styles and ask our advice in what may work for their home projects.

   To us...the kind of material you can choose is an individual choice....there are not good or bad ones. The way you use an area, the maintenance that you expect, the kind of finish and color you want to have in the room.

    granite samples Granite is "all natural" mined from quarries in large blocks cut into slabs and polished on one side. The countertop cuts the shapes precisely for their application in a home and profiles and polishes the edges to the customer's specfications. As a natural material, nature controls the variation of is inconsistent which to some people is a part of why they choose cannot be exactly duplicated.  Granite is porous and without sealing can harbor bacteria, mold etc. This porous material can also stain easily. To maintain granite, fabricators recommend you seal it...some believe annually, others will say every few years. 

    Counters need to be cut to go around corners etc. and if you are looking for a "seamless" look...that won't happen with granite due to the natual color variation of the material.

      Some people prefer both the look and durability of quartz. Quartz is what is referred to as "engineered stone" and is one of the strongest materials on the planet. It is made from  a mixture of 95% ground water natural quartz and 5% polymer resins.   It offers a consistency of color and is non porous. quartzIt does not require sealing and is easily cleaned with a damp cloth.  There are many color choices and seams are not as visible as they with granite.  There are some brands with colors that mimic the look of granite without having the sealing issue of that product.

   There are a number of large quartz manufacturers including Caesarstone, Cambria, Silestone and Zodiaq.  If you don't see the color and look you want in one line,  seek a distributor that offers more than one manufacturer.  

    Browsing the net is a good way to start but nothing is better than getting a sample and bringing it home to see it in the place it will be installed with the woodwork, flooring and wall colors you have chosen.  

   All, bathroom, buffet, bar...are installed after your cabinetry is complete.  Beware of putting new counters on old cabinetry unless it is in good condition or you intend to refinish or paint it.  (You don't want to spend all that time on money in a remodeling project and end up with Pigstick !)

    Our noon time "field trips" as time allows will be to look at counter tops for our bathroom vanity....our choice will be Quartz...most probably from Caesarstone which was our choice in our kitchen remodeling project.

        Look long...consider the possiblities don't change countertops often...and choose what works for can't make a "wrong' selection!

    When you are considering selecting a Realtor in southeastern Wisconsin...Call the Hansons, we are honored to be of service for all things real estate.

Sally K. & David L. Hanson, ABR, CDPE, CSS, e-Pro,ILHM, REDS

home worth iconemail iconhome searchLinked In  facebook

Comment balloon 20 commentsSally K. & David L. Hanson • May 11 2016 01:47AM


Hi Sally.  Very informative.  Your continued creation of new words (pigstick) is so funny.

Posted by Conrad Allen, Webster, Ma, Realtor (Re/Max Professional Associates) almost 2 years ago

Great overview.  One big downside to quartz for kitchens is that most will burn if you put a hot pot on it.

Personally, I prefer granite for its natural beauty.

Here in NY, granite is the strong preference, esp among higher end homes.  Quartz tends to be more popular in mid to mid-lower.  At the super high end, you see very high end granite and Calcutta gold marble (which isn't practical...but these guys don't cook, so what do they care?)

Posted by Debbie Gartner, The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers (The Flooring Girl) almost 2 years ago

Sally K. & David L. Hanson Ceasarstone is very popular in pockets, but noy nationwide. Many are also using concrete with incredible results, but it must be sealed.

Posted by Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI, Presence, Persistence & Perseverance (Realty One Group) almost 2 years ago

Thanks for the information about the "tops" in countertops, Sally and David.

Posted by Gabe Sanders, Stuart Florida Real Estate (Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales) almost 2 years ago

Sally, no pigstick preference is granite with wide variations in patterns but for easier care quartz is a great alternative....  glad your kitchen is coming is such an exciting project!

Posted by Ginny Gorman, Homes for Sale in North Kingstown RI and beyond (RI Real Estate Services ~ 401-529-7849~ RI Waterfront Real Estate) almost 2 years ago

I would love to redo my kitchen - perhaps someday! Thanks for the information.

Posted by Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat (Grand Lux Realty, 914-419-0270, almost 2 years ago

Quartz seems to be the countertop of choice these days. Although we have noticed that with the 55 crowd, they are still requesting granite...

Posted by Lawrence "Larry" & Sheila Agranoff. Cell: 631-805-4400, Long Island Condo & Home Sale Specialists (The Top Team @ Charles Rutenberg Realty 255 Executive Dr, Plainview NY 11803) almost 2 years ago

Excellent post.....we are seeing a lot of customers selecting Cambria Quarts for kitchens over granite.

Posted by Roger D. Mucci, Lets shake things up at your home today! (Shaken...with a Twist 216.633.2092) almost 2 years ago

I am glad I read this post and Debbie's comment. I am looking to get new countertop for our kitchen.

Posted by Gita Bantwal, REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel (RE/MAX Centre Realtors) almost 2 years ago

Good morning Sally K. & David L. Hanson ,

It is nice there are so many choices for consumers different tastes! You are right..there is no wrong choice..install what you prefer and enjoy it!

Posted by Dorie Dillard, Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate (Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.346.1799) almost 2 years ago

Good morning Sally. My preference is Quartz, but currently have granite. Enjoy your day!

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker (Wayne M Martin) almost 2 years ago

This is very good information to share. We selected quartz for our kitchen.

Posted by Roy Kelley, Roy and Dolores Kelley Photographs (Realty Group Referrals) almost 2 years ago

I agree with Roy above me...great info...I like silestone/quartz over granite

Posted by Kristin Johnston - REALTOR®, Giving Back With Each Home Sold! (RE/MAX Realty Center ) almost 2 years ago

Sally: Very informative article that will help consumers who are in the deciding phase. When we did our kitchen makeover a few years ago we decided on quartz because there were more color choices in our area.

Posted by Anita Clark, Realtor - Homes for Sale in Warner Robins GA (ColdwellBanker SSK Realtors ~ 478.960.8055) almost 2 years ago

Sally and David good information on the differences in countertops, and advice in how to pick the proper one.

Posted by George Souto, Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert (George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages) almost 2 years ago

Good evening Sally K. & David L. Hanson ,  It's nice to have field trips to learn and listen to the professionals about their products.  Quartz is my choice.

Posted by Larry Johnston, Broker,Friends & Neighbors Real Estate, Elkhart,IN (Broker, Friends & Neighbors Real Estate and Elkhart County Subdivisions, LLC) almost 2 years ago

Hi Sally and David -- you're right there are lots of choices and it can seem a bit overwhelming for some people.  It's nice that you have researched the top topic for your clients and it's especially true there are no right/wrong decisions but whatever works best for you.    

Posted by Michael Jacobs, Los Angeles Pasadena Area Real Estate 818.516.4393 (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage) almost 2 years ago

Good morning Sally and David. My choicewas and is quartz. I like the durability and the look.

Posted by Sheila Anderson, The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133 (Referral Group Incorporated) almost 2 years ago

Pretty much taste gets updated every 15 years or so, and there are signs that granite is nearing the end of its run.   The day will come when buyers walk into a kitchen that's granite and stainless steel, and cry "What were they thinking??"   

Posted by Dianne Goode, Realtor/Broker (Raleigh Cary Realty) almost 2 years ago

Coming over from Roy Kelley 's re-blog.  You are right there are so many great choices out there now.  Another consideration is will the counter top have a single beveled edge, double beveled, rounded or squared edge.

Posted by Anna Hatridge, Missouri Realtor with Goodson Realty (Goodson Realty) almost 2 years ago