As the new year swings into motion, we're sharing tips in our 5-part series on "Adding Value to Your Home". Today we take a look at updating your home surfaces.

A great way to celebrate the new year is to think about making some updates in your home. One change that will make a great impact is updating your countertops. If you still have laminate countertops, consider upgrading to quartz, granite or concrete countertops. If you have granite countertops already, and you haven't cared for them properly or they need a color update, it may be time for a countertop update. Updating your countertops will help add to your home value. This is especially true when upgrading.

Quartz Countertops

One of the most popular countertop updates and upgrades nowadays is quartz countertops. Quartz is actually harder than granite thus making it more durable. It's not porous like granite or concrete. According to, quartz is not 100% natural. It is manmade by using 95% ground, natural quartz and five percent polymer resins. It is practically indestructible and can be a safer, cleaner alternative. It is easier to keep quartz clean and more bacteria-free than it is with granite and concrete countertops. You do have to be careful with placing hot pots, pans and dishes from the oven on quartz. It can only withstand approximately 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Quartz can be a bit more expensive than granite. According to, the average cost to update to quartz countertops is $3,000 to $7,500. So, with its higher cost and increased popularity, updating to quartz countertops will add a bit more to your home value.

Granite Countertops

Granite is a 100% natural, hard stone and mined all over the world. It is cut into manageable size pieces for countertops and polished and coated for protection. Granite comes in many different patterns and colors. There is a vast, almost limitless, selection of pieces to match or complement your decor. Granite does need to be cared for and resealed, so there is some maintenance that comes with granite countertops. Granite should be cleaned daily to prevent bacteria build-up and should be resealed annually as well. According to, the average cost to upgrade to granite countertops costs between $2,000 and $4,500. However, it can also be on the much more expensive side if you're looking for a high-end slab of granite from Italy, for example. Then you are dealing with a considerable cost to transport the heavy pieces.

Concrete Countertops

Concrete countertops are another countertop update option. Concrete countertops are made from scratch and can be customized. You can choose a wide variety of finishes, textures and designs. You can even make concrete countertops look like granite. Concrete countertops can be less expensive than granite or more expensive, depending on the thickness and uniqueness. Concrete countertops need to be resealed every two to three years. Concrete can crack if not taken care of correctly. Concrete is stone and is porous, so it needs to be cleaned daily using a stone cleaner.

There are different grades of quartz, granite and concrete countertops. Therefore, prices may vary. You may be able to save money by choosing one of the lower levels of these styles. In upper-end homes, higher levels may be expected. Regardless, updating and upgrading your countertops will bring more desirability and home value your way. Whether you are updating your countertops to enjoy yourselves or thinking of selling your home soon, choosing one of these three types of countertops will not disappoint.