Granite countertops can transform apartments through their unique blend of stunning aesthetics and durability.
When getting an apartment ready for rental, there are numerous decisions that a property owner must make.
While it is essential that design and renovations remain practical and cost-effective, it is equally critical that, when rents are going through the roof, the apartments create a stunning impression to stand out in a crowded space. To this effect, granite is one of the best materials you can use to transform your apartments, and for several reasons.
The natural stone look provides a classy appearance that will appeal to a broad pool of renters, while their durable fabrication makes them a top choice to stand the heavy wear faced by rental properties.
Although aesthetics and durability are the chief benefits of adding granite countertops to your apartment complexes, there are countless other reasons why granite is a top choice in commercial spaces. The following breakdown looks at the many benefits of granite, explores how property owners can adroitly use granite in their apartments, and answers some common questions you may have when exploring countertop options.
How Granite Countertops Can Transform Your Apartments
While many apartments go as low-cost as possible when getting their units rental ready, more and more renters want spaces to feel as much like home as possible. Enter granite countertops. Fabricated from natural stone, granite provides a touch of luxury and sophistication to your apartments and is sure to appeal to consumers who have to pay higher rent around the country.
The following analysis looks at the many ways in which granite countertops can help take your apartments to the next level:
People take pride in living in spaces that look good. With some 43 million rented housing units in 2020, home is a rental for an increasingly high percentage of Americans, so there is greater pressure to make rental units mirror the design trends in private residences.
To this effect, one of the prevailing trends in interior design is to provide natural accents. With more people working from home, residents want to blur the lines between interior and exterior spaces, giving their spaces more room to breathe. The natural stone appearance of granite fits in perfectly with this trend and plays well with open floor plans that look to capitalize on the benefits of natural sunlight throughout the space.
Additionally, when people think of stone countertops, there is a tendency to immediately think of cold, gray surfaces. However, there are some 14,000 varieties of granite, allowing for an endless possibility of color and design schemes to meet the needs of any ambiance. Some of these most prevalent granite countertop designs are sure to create a “wow” factor in your apartments:
- Warm neutral tones – the benefit of having neutral, minimalist countertops in your apartment is that they never really go out of style. Even when design sensibilities take a major turn toward the bold, the majority of tenants will still find charcoals, beiges, and light browns appealing. These neutral tones also play well with many wall paints and cabinet styles as well.
- Matte finishes – honed granite will provide a low sheen surface—a notable contrast from more glossy polished granite. However, in an era in which natural accents are preferable to a highly processed look, the matte finish is likely to appeal to renters. To spice your countertops up, color enhancers can be added to honed granite for increased depth and richness.
- Veins and patterns – although there are still those who prefer their granite countertops to be one solid color, a major trend has emerged: the desire for “busier” interiors to break up the monotony. As a result, granite full of rich veins and patterns is likely to appeal to a contemporary demographic looking for increased visual intrigue.
- White – even though the pure minimalism of an all-white interior is not necessarily the prevailing trend, white granite is a safe bet for those looking to hedge against rapid changes in consumer sensibilities. There are several different shades of white granite, all of which are strong bets to stand the test of time and mesh well with any type of color or cabinet scheme in the apartment.
- Black – for those looking to make a bold, elegant statement in their complex, consider upgrading to black countertops. Perhaps not as timeless as all white countertops, black granite can be cut to include gold and copper flecks that will make your surfaces eye-pleasing. In addition, all of the durability benefits of granite are further fortified with black, as it is nearly impossible to recognize any scratches or stains that may happen to arise.
- Blue – blue granite is an excellent choice for apartments in coastal areas, as the blue design is meant to evoke a sense of calm. Swirling patterns can create an ethereal sense of motion in the kitchen, while softer blues can complete the spa-like oasis in the bathroom.
Although renters are increasingly attracted to properties that feel like home, there is no guarantee that every tenant will treat the unit as if they own it. Therefore, rental properties need to be designed to withstand a higher degree of wear and tear than a private residence, with the expectation that renters will neglect their property in some way before moving on.
When renovating for durability, there is no greater choice than natural stone surfaces, such as granite. With basic care, granite countertops can last as long as 100 years. As most apartments overwhelmingly choose some type of inexpensive laminate that needs to be replaced in as little as 20 years, the durability benefits of granite are readily apparent.
Among the benefits that this elite durability provides property owners include:
- Maintains appearance – while laminates begin to crack, stain, peel, and fade in as little as a few years, granite will look as good as new decades after installation, keeping the aesthetic appeal strong for potential tenants.
- Fewer maintenance costs – granite countertops will not crack when residents drop objects on them. This will limit the amount of costs associated with fixing countertop damage.
- No replacement necessary – as mentioned, granite countertops will last up to 100 years. While the initial investment may be higher than with a laminate, when you factor in the number of times laminate countertops must be replaced in the same timeframe, the cost looks exceptionally reasonable. There will also be less tenant displacement while you replace countertops in your units.
Easy to Maintain
Ease of maintenance is one of the most desirable attributes of a building material. People live exceptionally busy lives, so the less time they have to allot to cleaning their home, the better. To this effect, granite’s ease-of-maintenance qualities will appeal to tenants and landlords alike:
- Tenants – granite countertops are quickly cleaned with some warm water and a sponge or soft cloth. This can be a selling point to prospective tenants who do not want to invest in a long line of cleaning materials.
- Property Managers – the transition between tenants is one of the most labor-intensive periods for a property manager, as a bunch of boxes must be checked before the unit is ready to be leased again. By having countertops that require less cleaning attention, the burden of this transition period can be mitigated for property managers.
Less Installation Time
When making a countertop upgrade in apartment complexes, installation time is a critical consideration, as each day that the unit is indisposed is a day of rent foregone. For some stately surfaces, such as concrete or marble, the installation process can take several days and require the use of an experienced team with heavy machinery.
With granite tile, a countertop installation can take as little as a few hours for small apartment kitchens. For a better estimate of just how long a granite countertops installation will take for your apartment complex, call the professionals at Superior Commercial Solutions for a quote.
A specific selling point of granite countertops is their elite heat resistance. There is a strong likelihood that tenants will put scalding items directly on their countertops without the use of coasters or hot plates. As granite is formed by extreme pressure at high temperatures, it will be able to withstand hot pots and pans without scorching the surface—something that cannot be said for most other countertop materials.
Install in Multiple Spaces
Although much of the attention of a countertop renovation is naturally focused on the kitchen, there are countless ways to incorporate granite throughout your home to create a stunning effect, including:
- Bathrooms – granite provides a timeless aspect for bathroom vanities and backsplash. If you own a truly high-end complex, you may even want to consider the stunning effect of granite shower walls, although this would require more meticulous attention to sealing.
- Living rooms – adding a granite bar to the living room could be a strong selling point for renters who have plans to entertain guests frequently. If your apartments feature electric fireplaces, a strong option would be to add a granite surround to frame the fireplace for an added touch of elegance.
- Laundry room – although each unit of your complex is unlikely to feature its own laundry room, adding granite counters to the community laundry facility can be an attractive draw that entices tenants to do their laundry on site. In addition to the aesthetic benefits, the elite durability also makes them a strong option for community laundry areas.
- Patios – as a natural stone product, granite is right at home outdoors. Granite will not be degraded in the face of extended sun exposure, making it the ideal choice for patio tables and benchtops. Its fire-resistant properties make it a perfect choice if the patio area features a fire pit as well.
Add Value to the Property
A final benefit to a granite countertop installation is its potential of adding resale value to your property. While granite countertops will allow you to charge higher rents while you own the property, there may come a time when you are ready to sell and move onto other investment ventures.
To this effect, granite countertops do a great job of holding value in the eyes of prospective buyers and will help you recoup a large part of the renovation cost through the increased resale price of the property.
Granite Slab vs. Granite Tile for Apartments
When deciding to update your apartments to feature granite countertops, you may be confronted with a choice between granite slab or granite tile. While each option offers the same fundamental benefits of granite, there are some distinctions between the two:
This is the classic way to fabricate a granite countertop. With a surface cut from one solid piece of granite (slab), it provides a thick, durable, and eye-catching addition to any area of the home. Some of the benefits of choosing granite slab countertops include:
- As it does not require grout for installation, it is truly the most low-maintenance form of granite countertops, and the least likely to incur damage
- Mined from large granite deposits, granite slab is available in the broadest spectrum of colors and designs
- Provides the most stunning aspect to the apartment and does the most to command higher rents and resale prices
Despite the many benefits of granite slab, it is the more costly granite option. It will also take more resources and expertise to install and, in the unlikely event that damage were to occur, would be more challenging to repair.
For those who love the natural stone appearance of granite but do not want to spend as much money upfront for installation, then granite tile can be a strong option. In fact, the following benefits of granite tile actually make it a more attractive option for owners looking to incorporate granite into their buildings:
- More lightweight and easier to work with than granite slab, making it a strong choice in more confined apartment dimensions
- As granite tiles are not as thick as slab granite, the total cost of the countertop will be considerably less when choosing granite tile—a valuable consideration when numerous units must be renovated
- Because granite tile is set with grout, small sections of the countertop can be removed and replaced in the unlikely event that damage were to occur
On the flip side of the argument for granite tile, it will not increase a property’s value as much as granite slab. Additionally, because granite tile is mined from smaller deposits, it may not be available in quite as many colors or designs as granite slab.
Granite vs. Quartz and Marble for Apartments
Granite is one of the top choices for creating a natural stone appearance in an apartment complex. With that said, there are other materials that are also marketed as natural stone, such as quartz and marble, that may lead to some confusion for those looking to upgrade their units.
Although all of these natural stone options are highly desirable, durable materials that will allow you to command top dollar for your apartments, there are some key distinguishing features among the three.
Granite is a mined rock composed of minerals such as quartz, feldspar, and plagioclase. An igneous rock, it was formed of molten magma deep within the earth. Forming under such intense heat and pressure makes granite extremely hard and durable, and available in various colors.
Quartz is a mineral made of silicon dioxide. It is the most abundant mineral in the earth’s crust and is available in an endless variety of colors. However, as it is not a rock, it must be engineered to form a solid surface. Powdered quartz is mixed with resin and formed into slabs. This makes quartz an extremely durable and nonporous solution. (Contact Superior Commercial Solutions for more information on quartz countertops.)
Marble is a metamorphic rock that was formed from limestone over millions of years. While marble offers an elegant aspect, it is very expensive. It is also the softest and most porous of the natural stone options, meaning it is vulnerable to scratching and staining, making it a dubious choice for most commercial apartment uses.
Contact Superior Commercial Solutions
Keeping your apartment buildings up-to-date with the latest renovations is one of the most important ways to guarantee occupancy and reduce the cost of ownership. To this effect, one of the best renovation projects to start today is the installation of granite countertops.
Granite surfaces provide unmatched aesthetics and elite durability that will appeal to a wide array of prospective tenants and reduce the amount of time and money spent on work orders and service calls. If you are a landlord in the United States looking to upgrade to granite countertops, contact Superior Commercial Solutions for more details today!