4 Cons To Concrete Kitchen Countertops No One Talks About

The pro's and con's you should know about before investing in the concrete countertop trend.

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The Hausera Editorial Team

Concrete countertops are a modern, industrial way to transform your kitchen. The unique finish has recently become popular, and as it turns out, it’s one way that you can possibly save money on your renovation.

Though they may seem attractive and inexpensive, there are a few issues that you should be aware of before installing your own. 

What Are Concrete Countertops?

Concrete countertops are countertops that are either made from or covered with, concrete.

The concept was popularized by Joanna Gaines, on her TV show Fixer Upper. There are a few different benefits to these types of countertops, such as that they are one of the easier DIY projects in a kitchen. Given that many people feel that they can do them on their own, they might make a renovation seem a little more approachable.

As far as price goes, you can either construct the counter out of concrete entirely or cover your preexisting countertops with concrete. Either way, concrete is notoriously inexpensive, particularly when compared to other typical kitchen finishes, such as marbles, stones or woods. 

Most importantly, it is aesthetically pleasing. Not only does it give your space that coveted industrial appearance, but it is also unique, and the grey-tone of concrete is a neutral that pairs well with a lot of different color schemes and designs

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4 Things You Need To Know Before You Install Concrete Countertops

Despite all of the benefits, there are four issues in particular that you need to be aware of before you opt for concrete counters.

They are not really that cost-efficient.

Despite what it may seem on the surface (pun sort of intended) concrete countertops are not as cheap as you may believe. On average, they can cost up to $150 per square foot. This is because concrete is a little more expensive than most people assume, and you do not just need the concrete. You also need the braces to mold it, as well as the finish.

They can stain.

One of the most important considerations when it comes to kitchen renovation is that your space will endure a lot of wear. Given the constant water exposure, your countertops have to be able to take a lot. However, concrete is not designed to be resistant to that much. Because this is the case, it’s recommended that you seal your countertops annually, which is another cost, not to mention an inconvenience.

The weight can be too much.

Another reason why concrete is typically reserved for base constructions, such as floors or foundations, is that it is extremely heavy when dry. If your entire countertop is very large and made entirely from concrete, it can be too heavy for the counters that are underneath. This can cause damage, cracking, or even worse.

They can crack.

The absolute worst con to a concrete countertop is that they can crack, in the same way, that a road or stucco home can. Once these cracks appear, they are irreversible. You will have to either cover the crack somehow or replace it entirely. Given the seal on the concrete, simply filling it with more concrete isn’t an aesthetically appealing option. 

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Concrete Countertop Pros

However, for every con, there is also a pro. If your heart is set on still having concrete countertops in your home, here are some reasons why you may still want to consider them.

They can be customizable.

Given that you’re forming them yourself (or having a professional do it for you) the biggest advantage to a concrete counter, aside from the appearance, is that you can make them customized to your kitchen. This is a lot more expensive and complicated when you have to build stone or wood to move around a curve or uniquely sized space. 

Concrete doesn’t scratch.

Though it does crack, it doesn’t scratch. This is great for cooking and using knives and other sharp objects on it. In addition, it is impervious to heat. This is also great in the kitchen, given that you will probably be set down a lot of hot plates that can leave burn marks and other imperfections on other materials.

You can embed other materials.

If you want to make your design even more unique, you can embed glass fragments, stones, shells and fiber-optic lights into the concrete itself, making it even more interesting. 

It’s very durable.

Despite cracking potential, concrete is otherwise one of the most durable and reliable materials on the planet, ensuring that the bar for a big issue will be able to withstand almost anything.

Concrete countertops improve real estate value.

Finally, and perhaps most significantly, concrete countertops can easily improve your resale value, given that they are often considered a “premium” material, and part of the higher-end design. If nothing else, the appearance makes the kitchen more appealing, which improves buyer interest.

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What About Granite VS Concrete Countertops? 

Is granite better than concrete? Let's look at the cons of granite countertops.

There are limited colors and patterns.

Because it's made of natural stone, you will be limited with the colors. Granite is typically dark, which means the decor for the rest of the kitchen will be defined by that. With granite, you take what you can get! 

It's porous. 

Water and air get through the slabs quite easily. With that being said, it will need to be resealed periodically, which could get a bit annoying or frustrating. 

It creates a larger carbon footprint. 

Unless you live next to a granite quarry, it's being shipped from somewhere else. That process requires a lot of energy and is not really environmentally friendly. Though granite can last a long time, it's not necessarily a renewable resource. 

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The Pros Of Granite Countertops 

They are made of natural stone.

Your countertop will be unique. By being composed of quartz and other minerals from the ground (and then produced into slabs), it then varies in patterns (all in the neutral color realm). 

There are easy repairs and less maintenance.

Granite is a lot easier to install and maintain. Not only does the installation process take a few weeks, but all that's needed for cleaning is soap and water. It's a tough material that doesn't scratch and requires minimal maintenance to fix! 

It's heat-resistant.

It's stronger and more heat-resistant than concrete. Even if you place something hot directly on the surface (but try not to), it can handle it.

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Though there are many pros and cons to installing concrete countertops, eventually, it just comes down to deciding what’s right for you and your home. The most important thing is to be informed and make a decision from there.