Countertops 101: Everything You Need to Know Laurier III Kitchen imageNext to flooring, countertops are one of the most important features in a new home build. This is because they must be able to stand up to daily wear and tear, but they also have a big influence on your home’s aesthetic appeal (think back to the neon orange plastic laminate of the 80s and you’ll know exactly what we mean). 

So, whether it’s your first home or your 50th, you want to know you’re getting a good-looking, quality product for your hard-earned dollars. But, where do you start? How do you choose the best countertops for you? What if you want something other than the home builder is offering? Do they differ from builder to builder? We’ve got you covered! 

Standard Countertop Varieties 

The best place to start is knowing what kinds of countertops are available to you. While a flexible builder will work with you to include nearly any kind of countertop your heart desires, here are the most common materials: 


Generally, laminate countertops are comprised of layers of plastic adhered to particleboard. Laminate comes in a huge range of patterns, colours and textures and can give the appearance of everything from stone and to wood grain. 

Who are they good for? 

Laminate countertops are extremely resilient and low-maintenance. They’re a great option for budget-conscious homebuyers wanting a contemporary look without the price associated with some of the other options available. Remember, laminate has come a long way since the 80’s! So, if you’re a first-time homebuyer wanting eye-catching countertops on a budget, laminate might be the way to go. 


Did you know granite was once liquid magma?! It’s true. This popular stone is formed through volcanic processes and mined in several different parts around the world. They also contain small amounts of quartz, feldspar and mica (glittery minerals). Granite countertops come in several finishes and a variety of nature-made colours; this is especially neat as no two countertops will be alike and, not to mention, you can tell your friends you have lava in your kitchen. 

Who are they good for?

Granite is best for discerning homeowners looking for unique, high-end countertops and are not too concerned about budget. One thing to note, because granite is a porous material, countertops will need to be resealed to help resist stains. Granite is extremely durable, however, and very easy to clean.

Countertops 101: Everything You Need to Know Counter imageQuartz

Easy on the eyes, easy to clean and made from one of the hardest minerals in the world, quartz countertops are generally made up of well, quartz, colour pigments and ‘polyester resins’ that bind it all together. This means, unlike other stone countertop materials, quartz is man-engineered to be tougher. For this reason, they’re also scratch and stain resistant and don’t have to be re-sealed. Oh, and did we mention you can get beautiful quartz countertops in nearly every colour available?!

Who are they good for?

Quartz is the perfect ‘happy medium’ between an entirely man-made material like laminate and naturally mined stone countertop materials such as granite. Quartz is perfect for anyone looking for a diverse material that’s a little higher-end and at the same time, build to withstand daily wear and tear. If you’re a busy family looking to move-up into a more finely finished home, this is ideal!

In short, you’ll hear arguments in favour for all of the above. The key here is to remember no countertop is a good countertop unless it meets your budget and accommodates your lifestyle. 

The Broadview Difference

Our Standards

When it comes to buying a new home, a good builder will go out of their way to ensure you receive high-quality features, without the high-quality price tag. Some builders regard higher-end products as upgrades, thereby charging you more for finishes we believe should be standard. 

For example, you may prefer to include laminate countertops in your home. Just because you chose a more affordable option doesn’t mean you should receive lower-end materials. Your builder should work to provide you with the best quality laminate possible. 

The same applies to granite and quartz. Some builders will ‘skimp’ a little by installing the minimum ‘thickness’ required for these types of countertops. This is disheartening when you’re already paying more for an upgraded look. 

Countertops 101: Everything You Need to Know Samples imageOur Suppliers

We pride ourselves on our relationships with our suppliers and recognize them as being an integral part of our success as a homebuilder. That’s why we only work with customer-oriented suppliers who, like us, value doing the right thing at all times. 

It is for all the reasons above that we’ve partnered with Icon Stone and Tile, a leading edge supplier of Broadview’s designer countertops; a guarantee you’ll receive superior countertops without having to pay a superior price.

Our Appointment Process 

In addition to high-end specifications included in every home we build, we make it our mission to connect our homeowners directly with our revered suppliers. You can visit Icon’s expansive facility and design centre showroom to meet directly with an associate who will be more than happy to show you all Icon has to offer. 

Though you can rest assured you’re getting a quality product in a Broadview build, you may choose to upgrade or customize even further to really personalize your home. These appointments are the perfect opportunity to talk to suppliers such as Icon and find out what options are available to you. 

Regardless of whether you prefer laminate, quartz, granite or a speciality countertop, working with a quality builder means you’ll get the very best. In addition to helping you narrow down the best options for you and your family, a good builder will also set you up for a one-on-one appointment with their own supplier so you know exactly what to expect. If you have questions or just want to see what our countertops are really about, we invite you to stop by one of our showhomes and see the difference true quality makes. 


Photo credits: countertopssamples
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