Over the past two decades, few kitchen features have become more in-demand than granite countertops. Introduced in the 1980s as an alternative to marble, granite countertops have become easier to cut and ship in the decades since, making them a mainstay in kitchens around the world. Whether you’re renovating your kitchen for a new modern look, constructing a new home from the ground up or just weighing your options, you’ll find that not only are granite countertops more affordable, they’re also practical.
Here’s a cost breakdown for granite countertops, along with some options for financing the installation.
Granite countertop cost breakdown
COST PER SQUARE FOOT
Tile: Tiled granite countertops are actually just squares of granite on top of the counter surface, providing you with the visual appeal of granite countertops without the full cost. However, they leave visible seams from the grout work used to connect the tiles.
Modular: Larger than tiled granite but smaller than a slab, modular granite is a compromise that delivers style without the full cost. Typically used by DIY-ers, modular granite comes in mini-slabs, making them ideal for backsplashes and smaller surfaces like edges and corners.
Slab: As the name suggests, slab granite comes in large pieces cut and fabricated off-site and then delivered to your home.
$10-$40 uninstalled; $35-$66 installed
Factors that impact countertop costs
Grade: There’s no international standard for grading granite, so most manufacturers and retailers use their own system. Commercial-grade granite has small minerals scattered throughout with less color variation, mid-grade granite features more vibrant colors and patterns, and high-grade granite includes a one-of-a-kind display of hues and configurations.
Location: Your home’s location and the granite’s location of origin can also play a role in cost. Granite imported from China tends to be less expensive due to the country’s low labor costs, while granite imports from Brazil and Italy are higher priced. Furthermore, because granite is so heavy, the farther you live from the slab’s original location, the more you’ll pay in shipping costs.
Color: The more exotic and unique the colors of your granite slab, the more expensive it will be. For example, Blue Bahia granite out of Brazil is currently an in-demand color that fetches $90-$100 per square foot before installation costs.
Size: Not only do the length and width of your granite slabs play a role, but the thickness of the slabs are instrumental in determining price as well. Thicker countertops are higher quality and more durable, so they run at a higher price.
Edge details: If you’re planning to give your countertops intricate edges, you can expect to pay a higher price, since it requires additional work for the fabricator. Three of the most popular edge styles include oversized radius, bullnose and eased.
Financing options for granite countertops
If you have good credit, a personal loan could be a great option for financing your new granite countertop installation. With interest rates currently ranging as low as 5%, if you have stellar credit and can secure a low interest rate on your loan, you can continue building your credit score while paying off your granite countertops and installation over time.
Home equity loan
If you’re a homeowner, a home equity loan may also be a good way to finance your new granite countertop installation. This type of loan allows you to borrow against the value of your home and includes predictable monthly payments and low interest rates.
Home equity line of credit
Finally, you can consider using a home equity line of credit (HELOC) to finance your granite countertops. HELOCs work like a credit card that allows you to access the equity in your home. With a HELOC, homeowners can borrow up to a specific amount of money and then pay it back slowly over time.