Upgraded countertops are one of the most valuable assets you can have in your home. Granite remains the favorite choice for kitchens and bathrooms, and the benefits it offers are abundant. Not only do granite countertops invite daily enjoyment and utility, they can also increase the value and desirability of your home, and give you a higher return on investment (ROI) than many other remodeling projects. Return On Investment Remodeling Magazines Cost vs. Value Report, which provides an annual look at individual remodeling projects and their ROI, reported that a minor kitchen remodel returns 79.3 percent ROI. Countertops are a key element of the remodel, along with items such as cabinets, appliances, and flooring. Upgrading bathroom countertops to granite has a similar impact, with a 70 percent ROI on a minor bathroom renovation. The ROI is an important factor for those looking to renovate because it presumes an easier home sale at a higher home price. "Granite or marble countertops will make a home more appealing to buyers than will older countertops made from materials like laminate or wood," said the New York Times. Easier To Maintain Granite countertops are also easier to maintain than many others, which can help indecisive remodelers make a choice. "Marble is softer and more porous than the nearly indestructible granite, and so it can etch (scratch) and stain in a way that granite usually won't," said the kitchen. Quartz is considered among the easiest surfaces to take care of and is also a growing trend; add a glass mosaic tile backsplash to create a fancy and functional kitchen. Looking to express your more modern side? Try a recycled glass countertop to create a showstopping kitchen that is also friendly to the Earth. A Better Alternative Cabinet Refacing: The Smart, Financially Sound Choice Brand new cabinets are something most of us would love to add to our home. But when we see the cost, those cabinets are often off the table. New cabinets cost thousands of dollars at a minimum and can rise to numbers rivaling a luxury car. Refacing costs a fraction of the cost of new cabinets while providing a fresh new look to your space. New cabinets can be budget busters "Most cabinets range from $500 to $1,500 per cabinet box," said Better Homes and Gardens. "Based on an estimated 30 cabinets in an average-size kitchen, you can be looking at a cost of about $15,000-$45,000." If you're planning a small or midsize renovation, that could eat up your whole budget. Refacing instead of replacing can save you money and time, allowing you to use those funds in another area or simply lowering your renovation cost. "Fans of refacing say this mini-makeover can give a kitchen a whole new look at a much lower cost than installing all-new cabinets," said HGTV. "Cabinet refacing can save up to 50 percent compared to the cost of replacing. Jaymi Naciri is the award-winning author of hundreds of original articles focused on real estate, interior design, and home improvement. She's inspired by beautiful homes filled with fancy and functional things, and has been known to break out her iPAD in the middle of Granite Transformations Ventura to start writing about a new backsplash that captures her fancy.

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