It is often true of artwork that special care needs to be taken in order to preserve the natural beauty of the piece. While this is true regarding most things of value, countertops fabricated from natural stone such as granite, marble and others share a natural durability which is unmatched by any human made invention. Not even stainless steel can claim to be as durable and easily maintained as granite. There are a few exceptions to the rule, however.
Granite is essentially the hardest material on earth that can be commonly found throughout kitchens, bathrooms and as a variety of building components in residential and commercial applications. When granite is used as a countertop, shelf, or fireplace surround very little care is necessary to maintain the inherent beauty and finish. Granite is, for all intents and purposes impervious to the every day rigors of life.
Although some fabricators will recommend sealing a granite countertop, this is largely for the peace of mind of the consumer and not for any special protection needed for the granite material. Other types of natural stone countertops should be sealed due to the specific stone’s porosity. The best rule of thumb is to follow the recommendations of the stone fabricator. The only usual needed care to maintain granite or marble countertops is to wipe the stone down with warm water and possibly a non-abrasive liquid soap. The one exception, which is true of any material, is when granite or marble is used for flooring.
With regards to flooring materials, continuous wear and tear which floors are subjected to every day will not damage the stone itself, but can dull the finish. Sand, dirt and almost all abrasives will cause any surface, including carpet and wood, to become worn unless regularly cleaned. The nature of granite just allows the flooring to be more durable than other floor types.
As proof of this, many high traffic government buildings and large commercial businesses, such as hotels erected in the early half of the 1900s, used granite for countertops, flooring and more. Today these materials are still just as beautiful as was when installed. For this increased durability and natural one-of-a-kind beauty, granite flooring is often more expensive than the average carpet or even genuine hardwood flooring. The investment is also usually higher due to the specialized skill and machinery necessary to craft natural stone with attention to detail.
In the past few years we have witnessed one of the most serious financial catastrophes in American history. Millions of homeowners lost their homes. It has been several years after the initial burst of the housing market and banks have still not figured out how to follow up on all the foreclosures they marble countertops need to be making. There are simply too many of them to handle.
For the lucky homeowners that still have their homes, but have been thinking of moving, buying a new home is not an option anymore. However the option that is still possible and is becoming more popular than ever is fixing the home or remodeling it.
Remodeling a home is a smart financial move. It increases the home’s value by taking relatively small steps. One of those steps is bringing in a little touch of original granite stone. Whether a granite countertop, marble countertop or any other forms of kitchen vanity, homeowners are fixing their homes and making these stones very popular. In an interview for a local paper, Lee Carpenter, a home owner, said that, “It’s the biggest thing that homeowners can do to increase the value of their home. Granite is almost a dollar-for-dollar investment; you’ll upgrade a house by the same amount that you paid for the granite.”
Taking a closer look at granite, you can tell that this is true. The stone’s elegance and unique form (every slab creates a unique look so no two slabs are alike) comes in a variety of colors and shapes. This makes granite countertops very attractive for home owners who want to refresh the look and feel of their homes.
One of the biggest advantages stated was that granite lasts a lifetime. Unless something extreme happens, it should really hold up as a great top for the rest of your life. This means that it will stay as beautiful as it was when you bought it, and when you try to sell the house a few years from now.
The reason granite countertops are so awe inspiring in their look is that the slabs, like mentioned before, are unique. The process itself includes a slab that is cut. But that is also why home owners cannot really tell how it will look exactly according to the sample since the sample may include shapes that will not continue into the main piece. But most customers are completely happy with the end result. And if homeowners are buying granite from a merchant that has already gone through the process of sorting out the best pieces, then they are ensuring that their piece looks exactly the way it should.