countertop upgrade
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countertop upgrade (by dino [CA]) Jul 10, 2019 9:06 PM
       countertop upgrade (by fred [CA]) Jul 10, 2019 11:45 PM
       countertop upgrade (by Laura [MD]) Jul 11, 2019 12:43 AM
       countertop upgrade (by LindaJ [NY]) Jul 11, 2019 7:54 AM
       countertop upgrade (by Steve [TN]) Jul 11, 2019 8:12 AM
       countertop upgrade (by CDM [CA]) Jul 11, 2019 9:49 AM
       countertop upgrade (by Vee [OH]) Jul 11, 2019 9:51 AM
       countertop upgrade (by dino [CA]) Jul 11, 2019 10:46 AM
       countertop upgrade (by fred [CA]) Jul 11, 2019 11:35 PM
       countertop upgrade (by LindaJ [NY]) Jul 12, 2019 7:23 AM
       countertop upgrade (by Nellie [ME]) Jul 12, 2019 9:26 AM
       countertop upgrade (by dino [CA]) Jul 13, 2019 11:29 PM
       countertop upgrade (by CDM [CA]) Jul 14, 2019 12:22 AM

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countertop upgrade (by dino [CA]) Posted on: Jul 10, 2019 9:06 PM

State Specific Question About: CALIFORNIA (CA)

Anyone in Los Angeles area have recommendation for vendor to supply or vendor to install (or both) countertop upgrade in apartment kitchens? I will also be replacing the kitchen sinks with top mounted stainless steel. Kitchen cabinets will not be changed.

I know the big question will be what type of material for the countertops. Probably granite but I am open to being persuaded to choose something else. I am replacing ceramic tile so I will not be using that.

The amount of countertop space is not large so the material does not have to be real cheap. I'm mostly interested in low maintenance and durability.

If you are not in my area, feel free to offer advice on best material to use or any other tips on what to look for in installer.


countertop upgrade (by fred [CA]) Posted on: Jul 10, 2019 11:45 PM

Granite has actually been going down in price, ever since Quartz has become so popular. Granite counter top is a winner upgrade which all tenants appreciate.

You can get ready made slabs, standard size and finished, ready to cut to your size.

Or you can go custom, high end granite.

For apts, the first option would be enough. You can find many fabricators, cutters and installers along Sherman Way in North Hollywood.

I do my own granite counter tops, cutting and installing, and I get them at HD Supply.

In fact I have a granite job lined up for next week.

countertop upgrade (by Laura [MD]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2019 12:43 AM

Granite stains, when the tenants kids leave the grape juice bottle on the counter for 2 days you will end up with a big stain.

countertop upgrade (by LindaJ [NY]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2019 7:54 AM

Depending on your unit, I still like laminate. You can get all sorts of colors that mimic stone, quartz, etc. The edging can be done in a number of ways. Cheap, easy, clean and especially for a small area, easy to replace if need be.

I have laminate in my kitchen that everyone thinks is real stone on the HUGE island. The counter along the edges looks like concrete.

countertop upgrade (by Steve [TN]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2019 8:12 AM

Quartz is the best in terms of durability. But is generally the highest price, of course. Unless you have a high-end rental, why not stick with laminate (Formica)or Corian? Corian is a real nice surface, mid-price, and can sometimes be successfully resurfaced if it's damaged. --68.156.xx.xx

countertop upgrade (by CDM [CA]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2019 9:49 AM

We put a dark granite (brown/black) in a rental with white cabinets -- dark to avoid problems with stains -- and it has held up really well. Looks great and has no damage 10 years and several tenants later.

countertop upgrade (by Vee [OH]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2019 9:51 AM

Granite is also the king of holding bacterie from slicing stuff like tomatoes, looks cute to sell but for a rental you need a polish between tenants.

countertop upgrade (by dino [CA]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2019 10:46 AM

So this is my first change of any countertop material. I can see it's not a clear choice because the apts are somewhat ordinary, nothing special and not large, but in a pretty good area. Kitchens are also a little smaller than average.

Is the term solid surface what people refer to as Corian and are there other solid surfaces other than Corian.

Also is laminate a thin layer glued to particle board?

I'm assuming that both laminate and Corian are more susceptible to being damaged by heat but that the cost make it feasible to simply replace them between tenancies if needed. Do I have that right?

fred[CA], do the countertop fabricators you referred to typically work with several types of material or stick to their specific material like laminate or granite or whatever?

Sorry for so many questions on renovations, I came to income property from a background in rent control issues and other related matters and have had to learn on the job over the years when it comes to maintenance, repairs, and various upgrades.

Lastly, is it typical for countertop installers to have their own source for the material or is that better to obtain from a supplier that does not do any installation work?

countertop upgrade (by fred [CA]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2019 11:35 PM

Granite installers have access to suppliers. You need to shop around.

Most fabricators offer various materials, just go and visit a few of them.

How many units do you have?

countertop upgrade (by LindaJ [NY]) Posted on: Jul 12, 2019 7:23 AM

Laminate - Formica is the known name, but wilsonart and others manufacture it - is a thin layer glued to a substrate. It can be damaged by heat, but it is easy to clean, comes in hundreds of designs and is inexpensive. You can even by premade stuff that looks likes granite and other stone at the box store. 8 feet for about $150, with 6 and 4 ft available and even corners. Easy to cut your sink hole yourself. You can also get it made to order for your size/design with different edging types. Although glossy finishes look bright and shiny to begin with, they do wear more than a matte finish.

countertop upgrade (by Nellie [ME]) Posted on: Jul 12, 2019 9:26 AM

If you do use laminate (a highly underrated product in my opinion) and there is a corner use an interior/exterior waterproof glue such as Titebond III, which is what our laminate fabricator recommends. The sizes available at Home Depot are 4, 6, 8, and 10 with mitered pieces in 6 and 10.

If you want a wider selection of colors than instock you get your pieces all cut to length with the end caps already installed. Saves on your labor of cutting to length and doing the end caps. Well worth it in my opinion.

countertop upgrade (by dino [CA]) Posted on: Jul 13, 2019 11:29 PM

Most of the conversations I have had with apt owners in my area usually concern legal and legislative matters. More recently, the earthquake retrofit law has been important as well.

All of a sudden, I have had this new world of renovatios open up and I love it. I suppose I've been fortunate to not have needed to do much extra work in the past but the rents are just so high that I feel it is necessary. I have spent some time talking to other apt owners in my area yesterday and today and I have been surprised by the popularity of Corian and laminate. I just assumed most would favor granite or even quartz. I do realize the potential for heat damage with Corian or laminate but it is a less obvious choice than I originally thought.

I definitely appreciate any and all tips from everyone. This is actually going to be fun.

I think its time to actually go out and take a look at these items and see first hand what everyone has been talking about. The only thing I know for sure is that my ceramic tile counters are soon to be history.

countertop upgrade (by CDM [CA]) Posted on: Jul 14, 2019 12:22 AM

Corian melts if something too hot gets put down on it. I would look for something tougher (or cheaper).

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