Marble Buying Guide: Everything You Need to Know

If you’re considering buying marble for your new kitchen countertop, you’ve made a great choice. Marble will add immense value and beauty to your home. It is luxurious, durable, and unique. However, before you decide, you should refer to this marble buying guide to learn as much as you can about the different features, cost,s and the right approach to the process.

Physical Features

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When it comes to selecting the type of marble, there are two primary considerations: style and location. Marble is a beautiful choice for the kitchen and bathroom because it is timeless and striking. It is naturally sourced from the Earth’s surface, and each piece is unique and dramatic. You will find a ton of natural hues and undertones depending on the region it is mined. 

Marble has tremendous longevity, and you can refinish it easily too. Marble is also denser than other materials, which makes it a wise option for high-traffic areas like your kitchen or bathroom. It can also withstand everyday wear and tear with proper care and maintenance. 

While you’re selecting marble, it’s important to know that the type of marble matters too. If you’re vying for one of those gorgeous marble slabs you’ve seen all over Pinterest, ensure you consider the right finish. 

Cost Of Marble Countertops

On average, marble kitchen countertops cost around $70-$250/square foot. This price range makes it one of the most expensive natural stones. 

Unlike quartz, granite, marble slabs have one-of-a-kind characteristics, textures, veining, and colors. The rarer pieces of marble will cost you more than $300/ square foot. On the other hand, an average-sized marble countertop costs $3500 – $12,500. The prices will increase, depending on how vast your kitchen island is. Not just kitchen island, you can use marble in different rooms of your home.

For instance, you can use marble for your kitchen and bathroom counters, floors, and even on the shower panel. For all these uses, you can either purchase marble slabs or tiles. Marble slab is one of the most expensive surfaces on the market, but you can save money using marble tiles instead. 

Selecting the Right Slab

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It’s important to choose the right kitchen counter as it’s the focal point of any kitchen. We’ll tell you why marble is a good choice in this marble buying guide. Marble’s natural beauty makes it stand out among other natural or artificial materials. Marble can also withstand wear and tear over time & receive waterproofing treatment without any hassles.

As you might know, each slab of marble is rare and unique. While combining two slabs, make sure to install them in a way that creates an intricate pattern. The different finishes available produce different aesthetic results & protect the marble surface. You will find several white or colorful marble slabs, and several varieties of marble are also available.

The veining can be quite tricky to match, but you can pick up two exactly similar-looking slabs for your countertop or floor. While you’re picking the slabs, ensure to pick the enormous slab to avoid seams and grout lines. 

Another aspect that you must remember is that rare and intricate patterns will cost you more than the average designs. On the flip side, if you have a strict budget, you can get two similar slabs for way less and mirror the look. 

The Right Color Scheme

Choosing the right color is an important aspect of any marble buying guide. Marble has several colors, styles, and variations. One shouldn’t limit themselves on options; whether you’re looking for classic or never seen before pieces, marble kitchen countertops have it all. 

It is an attractive and timeless material that will work well with almost any kitchen style. You can choose from earthy tones like white, tan, gray, green, brown, or black fleck to match your kitchen’s aesthetic.

 

Advantages of Choosing Marble

Marble is one of the most beautiful additions you can install in your kitchen and bathroom. Just like any other kitchen countertop material, there are several pros and cons to marble countertops. For instance, marble comes in different shades; its variable composition gives it a lot of diverse color variations. 

No two marble slabs are alike, so you can be sure that your slab is as unique as it can get. Aside from looking good, marble also makes for a decently durable countertop. Depending on the type of marble, it can register anywhere from 1 to 4 on the Mohs scale of mineral hardness (diamond is the hardest at 10). You won’t dent a marble countertop or floor easily, making it among the best natural stones for a kitchen countertop.

Despite what you may have heard, marble is easy to maintain when you have the right sealer and cleaner. With proper sealing, the maintenance of your stone is as easy as any other material. 

Marble is also heat resistant and stands up well to hot pots and pans. Even the occasional spark won’t leave a nasty mark on a marble surface. Of course, unless you have the budget for it (and you want to experiment), you can test how much heat your marble piece can take. However, in the long-run, it is wise to use trivets or mats under hot cookware. 

Be sure to use something specifically formulated for marble and to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for sealing. It is one of the key steps in our marble buying guide. 

 

Disadvantages of Marble

If elegance is what you’re looking for, then you can’t go wrong with marble. Of course, you also have to be prepared to pay the price. 

Marble is among the most expensive natural materials available at a price range of $70 to 250 per square foot. Aside from the price, there are also a few other disadvantages to consider. To begin with, marble is a porous material, even more so than granite. It means it can trap dirt and germs.

Secondly, it’s more susceptible to scratching. You must be extra careful when you’re working on a marble countertop.

Marble can also get stained quite deep and quite effortlessly. Due to its porous nature, getting rid of the stains can be difficult. Acidic liquids, in particular, can easily stain the marble. Worse, these acids can eat away the polish and cause etching or scars on the marble surface.

Care and Maintenance 

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The epitome of luxury, marble is a classic choice for bathrooms in high-end homes. However, marble is porous and stains easily, especially if you didn’t seal it well. The next part of this marble buying guide will take you through the cleaning and maintenance requirements to keep your marble countertops looking lovely.

Cleaning

The cleaning process entails the removal of dirt, food, wax, and other build-ups. Avoid spilling wine, coffee, spaghetti sauce, and gravy; the stains will be difficult to reverse. 

Grinding

Grinding removes a thin layer from the surface to diminish scratches, lippage, and other imperfections.

Honing

Honing involves removing any minor superficial scratches and flaws. It also makes the surface uniform and not glossy.

Polishing

Homeowners use this technique for a premium look with its high-gloss, semi-gloss, satin, or matte finish. 

Sealing 

You can seal the marble countertop to protect it from water and oil-based stains. Marble is a stunning stone, but it can also be hard to maintain unless sealed properly. Sealing protects it from stains, corrosion, scratches & also gives it a uniform look.

Marble Cleaning Tips

  • Immediately clean after any spills or stains. 
  • Only marble-specific cleaners.
  • Use a soft microfiber cloth or sponge to clean. 
  • Seal it periodically to avoid damage. 
  • Apply a sealer to create an impenetrable shell and keep the stain near the surface.
  • Sweeping and mopping as and when possible. 
  • Use mats on marble floors for protection and a uniform look. 
  • Use a trivet or hot pad to place hot items. 
  • Avoid sharp items like knives, metal belts, toys, etc. 
  • Use coasters for drinks and beverages to avoid rings from forming. 

Marble vs Granite

When it comes to a top contender for marble, the question of marble vs granite comes up quite often. Both marble and granite have their benefits and drawbacks. For instance, both options are comparable when it comes to the price, design options, and durability.

In the end, it comes down to what suits best for you. If you can work around the acidic sensitivity of marble it’s the right choice. Similarly, if you are okay with resealing your countertop year after year, granite might be a better option for you.

What You Should Do With Marble

  • Reseal your marble countertops and floors every two to 10 years, depending on the type of marble you own. 
  • You can alleviate the issues with proper and regular sealing. 
  • Also, you can buy off-the-shelf sealers and DIY or ask a professional to do it for you. 
  • Use a specific marble stone cleaning product for your cleaning operations.
  • Wipe the stains and spills immediately.
  • Polish and hone the marble floors and countertops from time to time. 
  • We highly recommend you regularly wash your marble countertop with lukewarm water, then dry it with a clean cloth. 
  • If you have a marble countertop that has become dull over the years, you can bring back its shine by using a commercial marble cleaner and polish.
  • If you etch the surface, call a professional immediately to polish it. 

What You Shouldn’t Do With Marble

  • Don’t expose your marble countertops or floors to anything greasy like oils or organic stains.
  • Never place anything which is excessively hot on your marble. 
  • Never clean marble with abrasive chemical cleaners and bleach.