A Des Moines Custom Home Builder Blog

Counter Productive: What You Need to Know About Marble, Granite, and Concrete

Posted by Don Brill on April 18, 2019


Choosing the right material for your kitchen counter can be tricky, especially with all of the options on the market. We’ll take a look at three common countertop materials and evaluate their pros and cons. Check out the following information to make sure you're "counter" productive! 



Known for its jaw-dropping beauty, marble is a stunning choice for countertop material. Naturally found all over the world, marble comes in a number of varieties. Regardless of the style you choose, marble is a bold design statement in the kitchen or bathroom. Because of its grandeur, marble can increase your home’s appeal to potential buyers, which makes it an asset when it comes time for resale. Unfortunately, the opulent appearance comes with a premium price tag. It’s also very heavy, yet still susceptible to nicks, cracks, and scratches. In order to keep it gleaming, you’ll need to be careful around the counters and institute a vigilant cleaning regimen. With proper care, marble countertops can last for a very long time.



Depending on the grade and color, marble can run between $40 and $100 per square foot.



  • Gorgeous appearance
  • Natural material
  • Long lasting



  • Very heavy
  • Relatively delicate
  • High price tag



Another popular natural stone option in the countertop market is granite. Compared to marble, granite is nearly indestructible. Heat, cuts, and scratches won’t harm the surface if it’s properly sealed, and it comes in dozens of colors and finishes. Granite is stain resistant and won’t absorb any spills that may happen in the kitchen or bathroom. On top of its everyday dependability, granite adds a refined, elegant touch to whatever space it’s in. Like marble, you will have to pay for its premium performance and appearance. If you're willing to make the investment, you’ll love its unique look and the way it can stand up to whatever you throw its way.



Depending on the color and style, granite countertops are usually between $35 and $75 per square foot.



  • Incredibly durable
  • Variety of color
  • Long lasting when properly sealed



  • Fairly pricy
  • Porous and requires sealing
  • Needs to be maintained



Perhaps one of the trendiest options on the countertop market as of late is concrete. Ideal for contemporary home design, concrete brings with it an industrial aesthetic and nearly unbeatable fabrication. Solid composition makes concrete countertops incredibly heavy, often weighing between 19 and 25 pounds per square foot. For this reason, you’ll need to choose cabinets that can support its extra weight.  Advances in manufacturing mean that your concrete countertops don’t just have to be a simple, flat gray. Etching, acid staining, and stamping can all be used to create a one-of-a-kind look for your home’s countertops. Because of its customizability, concrete offers one of the widest ranges of design options in the industry. Its diversity and durability make it an excellent choice for homeowners looking to put a fresh spin on the countertops in their home. You’ll pay a handsome amount for this premium material and construction, but with proper care, you’ll have a countertop that could withstand the next world war.



Depending on your design and finishes, concrete countertops average $55 to $185 per square foot.



  • Completely customizable
  • Size and shaped to fit your specific needs
  • Highly durable



  • Can be expensive
  • Extremely heavy
  • Repairs are nearly impossible.


If you’re ready to get started with your custom home—and its gorgeous new countertops—contact the experts at Homes by Brill. Our team of custom home builders has the knowledge and expertise to make your dream home into a reality. You'll be a part of the home building process from start to finish. Schedule a consultation to learn more! 

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Topics: Interior Features