By Gene and Katie Hamilton
Designers tell us that replacing old, worn countertops with a fresh new surface can transform the room. The countertops take up a lot of space and connect the cabinets together so they're a key element in a kitchen. For a low cost material consider using laminate, a hard working surface that lasts a long time.
A post-formed laminate type of countertop has easy-to-clean rounded front edges and an integrated backsplash, which gives it a finished look. These laminate countertops are made of a practical and versatile material that's available in hundreds of colors and designs.
Home centers and lumberyards sell straight sections of laminate countertop in various lengths; for L-or U-shaped layouts it is cut to size. When shopping, bring a sketch of the dimensions of the cabinets and existing countertop and ask for someone from the store to double-check your measurements before placing an order.
DIY Hassle Alert
Living without countertops in a kitchen is not pleasant, so schedule a short turnaround time between removing the old and installing the new one.
An installer will charge $3,316 to install a 100-square feet of good quality post-formed laminate countertop. This includes the labor and material. If you have some carpentry experience, you can buy the countertop and install it for $1,800, saving 45 percent.
The project involves removing the old countertop, test-fitting the new one, cutting it to size, making cutouts for fixtures and appliances, installing build-up strips so that it is level, finishing the ends, securing the top to the cabinets and then installing the fixtures and appliances. Don't forget to finish the job with silicone caulk filling the gaps along the backsplash, the walls and the sink.
Read BetterHomes & Gardens' Pros and Cons of 10 Countertops.
Jen Reviews has some inspiring design ideas at 15 Kitchen Design Ideas to Make Your Kitchen Pop For Cheap.
Now you know the average cost to replace kitchen countertops, which includes the labor and material, and what’s involved, so you can decide to do it yourself or hire a contractor. Don’t forget to adjust the cost to where you live by adding your ZIP Code.
Improvement and Repair Cost Updated 2019
The cost and time data is generated by averaging labor and material data from annually updated cost books used by contractors and refined by the authors'
experience remodeling 13 houses. They are authors of 20 home improvement books and Do It Yourself or Not, a weekly column syndicated by Tribune Content
Agency. The national cost can be adjusted by ZIP Code.