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kitchen counters

5 Beautiful Countertops to Consider for Your Kitchen Remodel

During a kitchen remodel, one of the first things that gets touched is the countertops. Kitchen counters are an investment that you want to last for years to come. Aside from the aesthetics, you’ll also want a countertop that can withstand your lifestyle. Do you host social gatherings? Is weekly meal prep part of your schedule? Do you use your counters for homework and science projects? 

By assessing your wants and needs and being honest about the durability your family requires, you can choose a countertop that is both beautiful and functional. Below are the different types of countertops to explore before starting your kitchen renovation in Los Angeles

1. Corian

Corian countertops are durable and smooth – they’re a popular alternative to granite and slightly cheaper, too. Corian is available in plenty of colors and patterns, allowing you to imitate other materials like marble and concrete. Popular colors include gray, white, beige and brown, and you can integrate this with a Corian backsplash for a seamless look. The only thing to be aware of is that Corian can be damaged by heat, so always use heat pads and mats. 

2. Quartz

Quartz is a great countertop material if you have a busy household. Surprisingly, these countertops are not made entirely from quartz. About 10 percent is a polymeric or cement-based binder, while the other 90 percent is crushed up quartz, marble and other natural stone. Everything is mixed and held together with binders, making these counters stunning but durable. 

3. Granite

Granite has been the gold standard for many years because it’s durable, heat resistant, stain resistant,  and available in a wide range of colors and cuts. Overall, granite countertops require very little maintenance, though it’s best to avoid harsh cleaning products. Soap and water is best. Also, pay attention to the type of granite you’re getting, as some is more porous than others and may need to be sealed. 

4. Stainless Steel

Love the industrial look? Rather than going with butcher block (this is porous and can harbor bacteria), we recommend stainless steel countertops. This material is virtually indestructible and perfect for busy kitchens. When done right, stainless steel provides an elegant appearance, especially when coupled with a stone or mosaic tile backsplash. Stainless steel can scratch and will show fingerprints – but our customers agree this is better than stains!

5. Tile

Think tile countertops are out of style? Think again! Depending on your needs and lifestyle, tile counters may be the perfect option for you. Made from materials like ceramic or porcelain, these counters are heat resistant and available in endless colors and styles. Like other types of counter materials, you can integrate the tile with a matching backsplash for a smooth, pleasing look. Tile does require sealing because of the grout lines. 

If you’re ready to renovate your kitchen space, contact Kavin Construction for a free estimate. We have experience working with all types of countertops and can help you choose a material that fits your lifestyle needs and aesthetic goals. 

remodeled kitchen

How to Manage the Costs of a Home Renovation

Sticking to a budget is always a challenge, but it’s especially difficult when hiring a Los Angeles contractor to do a home remodeling or renovation project. It’s not just one cost you’re accounting for but many. Nevertheless, having a budget allows you to manage your expenses and put aside the proper funds to cover each project. 

Follow the steps below and you’ll have a decent idea of how much your next home improvement project will cost. 

Prioritize Your Remodeling Needs 

The first step when budgeting for a remodeling project is to know exactly what you want. Create a list of everything you hope to see in your project, such as new cabinets, hardwood flooring or recessed lighting. It’s helpful to prioritize your list so that if you have to make cuts, you can draw the line more easily. For example, you may need new cabinets but are willing to go with laminate countertops over granite. 

Here are a few questions to ask yourself: 

  • What do you want your project to accomplish?
  • What are you willing to compromise on? 
  • What are you willing to splurge on?
  • What details are required to complete your project? 

Create a Plan with Estimates 

When you have a list of everything you need, you can then start researching the associated costs. Not only is this a great way to allocate your budget, but also it will help you communicate your expectations to a contractor. Below are some tips to help you budget more accurately: 

  • Use online resources like HomeAdvisor to determine how much each project costs. Labor usually accounts for 25 to 30 percent of a project’s budget. 
  • Select the fixtures and finishes you want and what you plan to spend on them. This includes faucets, tile, flooring, cabinet hardware, paint and more. Be sure to account for shipping and taxes. 
  • Include the appliances you plan on purchasing. Make sure you factor in installation and delivery costs to Los Angeles as well. 
  • Consider additional living expenses. If you plan on having a major renovation, you may have to move your family out of the home for a while. Consider costs for staying in a hotel, boarding pets, etc. 

Get Quotes from Contractors 

Once you have done your research, you can start reaching out to contractors in Los Angeles. Having a detailed list will help you communicate with a contractor and choose the best professional for your needs. A few tips for selecting a contractor include: 

  • Complete interviews and check references. It’s helpful to get at least three estimates so that you can compare numbers. Before requesting a bid, pre-qualify contractors by checking their references and contractor’s license status. Also, make sure they have workers’ compensation insurance and liability insurance. There’s nothing more frustrating than liking the cost and the contractor, only to find out that they are not professionally qualified to take on the project. 
  • Review the estimates. The contractors should provide you with bids that are relatively close in cost. If you receive a low proposal, don’t assume the project will be completed for that amount, particularly if the other two proposals are similar. Remember, most contractors do not have the funds to make up for their mistakes, so it will fall on you to cover them, in addition to the extra headache and aggravation you’ll have to go through.
  • Be clear about your expectations. Communication is key in any contractor-customer relationship. Ask about potential time delays, additional expenses you may encounter, etc. The contractor should be upfront and honest with you. Telling you only what you want to hear can result in sticker shock and regret later on in the project. 
  • Ask about ways to save money. If your estimates are higher than you’re comfortable with, consider some ways to save money such as by doing the demolition work on your own, ordering your own fixtures and more. 

Once you decide on a contractor, make the final updates to your project plan to ensure everything stays on budget. Kavin Construction is a Los Angeles home and kitchen remodeling contractor that offers free estimates. Contact us today to discuss your project. With 43+ years of experience and a diverse portfolio of projects, we’re confident that we can meet and exceed your expectations.