Granite countertop costs cover a wide range from fairly affordable to some of the most expensive counters on the market. This guide to granite countertop costs explores the pricing for this gorgeous material.
Granite Countertop Prices
There are two types of granite countertop to consider: Granite slab countertops and granite tile countertops. Slabs are large sections up to 8 feet in length cut from one solid chunk of granite stone.
Granite tiles are pieces of granite typically 12 inches square, though both larger and smaller tiles are available.
- Granite slab prices: $32 to $150 per square foot. The average is about $70-$75 per square foot.
- Granite tile prices: $8 to $50 per square foot. The average is about $14-$18 per square foot.
Factors Affecting the Price of Granite Countertops
There are several reasons for the wide range of granite countertop costs.
- Granite color: There are nine basic colors of granite – black, brown, beige, yellow/gold, blue, green, pink/rose, gray and white. You’ll also find many hues in each basic color. Some rare colors, such as blue, sell for premium prices compared with more common colors.
- Veining: The presence of rich veining in the granite is considered an advantage. The more veining the slab or tile has, the higher its price will be.
- Thickness: Slabs are cut in two thicknesses. 3cm slabs cost more per square foot than 2cm slabs.
- Slab size: The larger the size of the slab, the more it will cost per square foot due to the rarity of such large slabs.
- Product cycle: Granite lines that are being discontinued to make room for new product often sell at discounts of 40% or more.
The Cost of Removing Old Countertops
In kitchen remodeling projects, old countertops need to be taken out first. The process is quite easy, and it’s a good way to save money by doing it yourself.
Countertop removal costs: $1-$3 per square foot
The exact estimate depends on the complexity of the job. If large, solid pieces of material are being removed, the cost will be on the low end.
If individual tiles or a laminate surface are being removed to make use of the existing plywood base, the labor-intensive nature of the work raises the cost.
Granite Countertop Installation Costs
While granite slab costs more for the material than tiles, the opposite is true for installation costs. Tiles take longer to install, so costs are slightly higher. However, as a total package, granite slab countertops still cost 35% to 70% more than granite tile counters.
- Granite slab installation cost: $8 to $15 per square foot, with $10 being the average.
- Granite tile installation cost: $9-$18 per square foot with $12 being the average.
There are several factors that affect installation costs including how many remodeling estimates you receive, whether the work is done by a handyman or a countertop contractor, how difficult it is and whether any structural repairs need to be made before new countertops are installed.
If you’d like more details on these factors, consult our Kitchen Remodeling Cost Guide that will help you plan to total cost of your kitchen renovation.
An Overview of Granite Countertop Costs
The following table provides a quick overview of granite countertop material, installation and removal cost. Costs are shown per square foot.
Table 1: Cost of Granite Countertops: A Comparison at a Glance
|Type of Countertop||Material Cost (sq. ft.)||Installation Cost (sq. ft.)||Removal Cost (sq. ft.)||Total Cost (sq. ft.)|
|Granite Slabs||$32-$150||$8 to $15||$1 to $3||$41 to $168|
|Granite Tiles||$8-$50||$9-$18||$1 to $3||$18 to $71|
How to Save Money on Granite Countertops
These tips will significantly reduce the price of granite countertops for your home:
- Choose granite tiles instead of slabs
- Shop around for attractive discontinued materials at reduced prices
- Remove and dispose of the old countertops yourself
- Get at least 3 written estimates from countertop contractors who know they’re competing to get the work
- If you’re remodeling your entire kitchen, act as the general contractor rather than hiring one, which means that you’ll do all the hiring of the individual contractors for flooring, cabinets, countertops, lighting, etc.
Granite Countertop Pricing FAQ
I’ve seen some granite tile that costs more per square foot than slab. Why is this?
Color rarity and the quality of the stone are the reasons. Premium granite tile cut from rare colors such as blue and rating high in strength and composition will cost more than the least expensive slabs, especially 2cm slabs of a common color.
Is saving money by hiring a handyman instead of a contractor for the installation a good idea?
If the handyman has excellent experience in granite countertop installation, the cost savings might be worth the risk. Hiring a handyman who mostly does roofing or carpet installation, for example, to install a granite countertop isn’t recommended.
Why do contractors cost more to hire than handymen?
There are a couple important reasons for this. Countertop contractors have been specifically trained, often at granite countertop manufacturing facilities, in how to install these premium countertops. Most have excellent skill and experience.
Secondly, most contractors are insured and some are bonded. Many handymen are not. Being insured means that if a worker is injured on the job and sues, you are protected. Being bonded means that if the contractor fails to do the work or does it improperly, you will be compensated.
How can I be sure of getting competitive estimates?
There are two ways to do this: You can make the effort to contact local countertop contractors, interview them, let them know you’ll be talking with their competitors too and get estimates from each one.
The second option is to use a service like the one we offer that requires filling out one simple and quick form. You’ll receive written estimates from contractors who are pre-screened for quality and who know they are competing for the work. There is no cost or obligation for using this service.
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