Know the Basics of Granite Countertops

Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty

When looking for a new home, many home buyers are looking for updated kitchen and bathrooms with beautiful granite countertops. The elegant surfaces are one of the most popular options for home owners and buyers, but how much do you actually know about these large slabs of stone?

What is Granite?

Granite is an igneous rock consisting of about 20 percent quartz by volume. It’s a highly durable and comes in a variety of different colors and patterns. The rock is mined throughout the world, with the largest granite quarry in the United States located in Barre, Vermont.

The material has been used for thousands of years, and it was actually used for the Red Pyramid of Egypt, the third largest of the Egyptian pyramids. It has been used throughout the years by humans due its incredible strength, but can be seen in its natural state in some of the world’s most stunning locations, like Yosemite National Park.

Typical Granite Cost

Today, granite is incredibly common, and although it can be a bit pricey, many home owners believe it’s worth the cost. According to thekitchn, granite can cost anywhere from $45 to $400 per-square-foot depending on the rarity of the stone, thickness, origin and manufacturing labor costs. However, this doesn’t include additional fees such as resealing, installation, special finishes, edge details and more.

The Uniqueness of Granite

Each slab of granite is entirely unique and it comes in all color schemes to match the rest of the decor in your home. The stone is hard, durable and actually very easy to clean. It can resist stains and water--when sealed properly.

To clean granite, home owners can purchase a special spray, or you can just use warm water and a gentle cleaner. Granite should be resealed regularly to keep its durability, in which case you won’t have to worry about spills or stains very much at all.

In the past few years, questions have arisen over whether or not granite is safe for homes. Any type of rock can contain radioactive elements, but according to the Environmental Protection Agency, it’s not anything to be overly concerned about.

According to the EPA website, “since granite is generally not very porous, less radon is likely to escape from it than from a more porous stone such as sandstone. It’s important to know that radon originating in the soil beneath homes is a more common problem and a far larger public health risk than radon from granite building materials. Also, any radon from granite countertops in kitchens or bathrooms is likely to be diluted in the typical home since those rooms are usually well ventilated.”

If you are interested in learning more DC condo-buying tips and how we can help you find your ideal DC home, don’t hesitate to contact us with all your real estate needs.

Comments (3)

Tim Lorenz
TIM LORENZ - Elite Home Sales Team - Mission Viejo, CA
949 874-2247

Thank you for the info on granite.  Have a wonderful Christmas Season.

Dec 11, 2014 12:09 AM
Nicole Doty - Gilbert Real Estate Expert
Zion Realty - Gilbert, AZ
Broker/Owner of Zion Realty

Also when you're picking out your granite counter tops make sure to have them pull out each slab for you to look at as the color variances can be very different from slab to slab.

Dec 11, 2014 12:28 AM
Dave Thompson

I love the look of granite in the kitchen. Like you point out every slab of granite is unique and has a look of its own. That is one of the main reasons I like granite counter tops in any kitchen.

Jul 01, 2015 09:03 AM