If you are planning to re-sell your home at some point, it’s never a bad idea to make a few investments that will increase its value. Although this does involve a little bit of expense on your part, such repairs will usually pay for themselves in the end. With that in mind, we will look at one of the best ways to increase your home’s value without a huge investment. Based on the title, you already know that we are talking about quartz countertops.
What Are Quartz Countertops?
Quartz is a type of stone, but the story isn’t as simple as that. It isn’t so easy to find huge pieces of quartz, but small pieces are extremely common. Thus, quartz slabs are usually made from a mix of quartz chips, powdered quartz, and epoxy. Depending on grade, other materials may also be present. Sometimes, companies will take leftover pieces of marble and granite and mix them with quartz. Obviously, that’s not a bad thing, but sometimes they use ground-up ceramics and even recycled glass. Because of this, it is very important to know what you are buying and look for something that is at least mostly quartz. That being said, many companies will add dyes to these mixtures, and there is nothing wrong with that.
There is an easy way to test your quartz countertop to see if it contains too much filler material. Just obtain a small sample (these can usually be purchased for a few dollars) and try to scratch it with a knife. Pure quartz is harder than steel, so the knife should not be able to scratch the stone without serious effort.
How Does Quartz Compare Against Granite?
Since granite countertops are the most common stone countertops, it is fair to measure quartz against them. First, let’s look at prices. Granite prices vary a lot depending on price, so let’s start with the high end of that range. This Empire granite vanity top is about $500, and it’s only two feet wide. Here is a vanity top made of Santa Cecilia granite. As you can see, this is about the same size, and it’s only $240. Even still, that is not cheap.
Now, let’s see if we can find some similar products made of quartz. We found some examples here and here. The first of these vanity tops is approximately $350, and the second one will run you $317. Thus, we can see that quartz is not exactly cheap, either. It is cheaper than granite, but not by a whole lot. This is probably due to the greater amount of work that is required to produce a composite material.
When it comes to hardness, quartz actually gets some points on granite. The hardness of any substance can be measured using the Mohs scale. Soapstone usually has a hardness of 1 on this scale, while a diamond has the highest rating, which is 10. Quartz has an impressive Mohs rating of 7, making it harder than granite or steel. Granite has a hardness that varies between 6 and 6.5, so even the hardest granite will not be as tough as quartz.
We might also talk about cleaning and maintenance. In this category, quartz blows granite out of the water. Granite is a porous stone (in most cases) and requires sealing in order to avoid staining and water damage. Quartz is a non-porous stone, so it doesn’t have this problem. However, it’s a moot point because quartz slabs are already sealed! Up to ten percent of a quartz slab is composed of epoxy or other resinous glue. Thus, you might say that it comes pre-sealed. This also means that quartz can be cleaned with a wider variety of products. You don’t need to buy any specialized stone cleaner, as you might have to do for your granite.
Will A Quartz Countertop Add Value To My Home?
In short: The answer is yes. Anything that you do to improve your home is sure to increase its market value, and quartz countertops are no exception. The real question is: How much will a quartz countertop increase the value of your home?
It is very difficult to find exact numbers for this sort of thing, because it will depend on several factors, including:
Median home prices in your area
Age and general condition of your home
Overall size of your home
However, we did find one study that attempted to quantify the difference. The study compared sale prices for a variety of homes, focusing on the differences between interior-furnished homes and standard-option homes. They found that interior-furnished homes would normally bring a higher price than standard-option homes. The difference was about $55 per square foot. The average home in America measures about 2,000 square feet. $55 per square foot times 2,00 feet equals a total difference of $110,000.
Other Ways To Add Value To Your Home
We have already seen that home furnishings can make a very large difference in the value of your home. As such, you should not stop at a set of stone countertops. Other relatively cheap measures that can increase the value of your home include:
Stainless steel kitchen appliances
Energy-efficient windows and roofing
New plumbing fixtures
New interior paint
In summary, quartz definitely seems like one of the nicer options on the market. Although it’s a composite material, that actually helps to make it more beautiful. Companies who make this stuff can customize the colors and patterns in any way the customer desires, so that’s kind of nice. They may not be 100% natural, but quartz slabs are very environmentally-friendly, as they are mostly made from scrap materials. If we have succeeded in giving you some good ideas, please fill out the contact form below.