How Much Does It Cost For New Granite Countertops

How Much Do Granite Countertops Cost

Whether you’re upgrading your old countertops or starting fresh, stone countertops, like granite or quartz, are an excellent choice. The natural appearance of granite offers warmth and a unique character to any kitchen. Bonus: on top of their aesthetic appearance, granite countertops can also improve your home’s overall resale value.

Cost is a significant factor to consider, whether you’re DIYing the process or hiring a full-service granite fabricator. This article dives into the cost of granite countertops and associated expenses that drive the total, so stick around to learn more!

How Much Do Granite Countertops Cost?

The total cost of your granite countertops hinges on a myriad of factors. However, since that statement really doesn’t answer the question, let’s take a look at the national average. Most people pay about $3,250 for new granite countertops, but the range extends from $2,000 to $4,500.

We can also approach the cost aspect from a different angle. Consider the chart below, which offers an idea of pricing for varying scenarios. 

Size and TypeAverage Cost Range
Bar Top (16 x 36)$300 to $600
Small Island (40 x 40)$650 to $1,200
Small Counter (24 x 72)$750 to $1,400
Kitchen Island (36 x 78)$1,000 to $2,100
Average Kitchen Size (24 x 180)$1,900 to $3,300

What Impacts The Cost Of Granite Countertops?

Granite Countertops

With the generic figures in mind, you’re probably wondering why slabs of stone cost so much. Well, a few things contribute to the overall total, and since it’s not as simple as a few minor contributing factors, we’ll tackle each aspect one by one. 

Slab Size And Quality

Granite comes in various sizes and quality levels. The grade directly correlates with the quality of the slab. There are three primary grades: low, mid, and high. Low-grade slabs of granite usually feature simple patterns and colors, like gray, green, and white. These slabs are often about ⅜ inch thick.

Mid-grade granite slabs often offer a wider range of colors and feature interesting patterns. These slabs are ¾ inch thick. The highest-grade granite slabs are thicker and feature unique, elaborate patterns and vivid colors. 

Some granite slabs may feature different color variations and specific stones. The more common the stones in the slab, the less expensive it is. The slabs containing rarer stones drive the price up substantially.

Generally, granite slabs cost anywhere from $40 to $60 per square foot. However, choosing a higher-grade slab speckled with rare stones could cost between $75 and $100 per square foot. Thicker slabs cost more, while thinner slabs tend to be less expensive. 

Rarity And Source

As you would probably imagine, rarer granite costs more. Rare colors usually appear in higher-end granite. The rarest granite color is blue, which tends to be the most expensive option. 

In addition, the location of the rock quarry plays a role in the price. If the quarry you buy from isn’t local, you’ll have to pay the shipping cost. Considering the massive size and weight of the slabs, shipping usually isn’t cheap by any means. 

Processing granite costs considerably more in the United States than in other countries. If you’re unsure whether there is a quarry close to you, a quick online search can answer your question.

If you don’t want to buy the stone from a quarry, you can also find granite countertops at certain home improvement stores, like Lowe’s and Home Depot. 

Cut And Color

As we mentioned earlier, the color of the granite slab plays a major role in the total price per foot. Prices rise as you move towards the rarer end of the spectrum. Patterns vary, including swirls, streaks, or mottles, and different inclusion stones. 

The color plays a significant role in the granite’s price per square foot. A few of the most popular granite colors today include:

  • Alaska White: White granite is a popular pick among many homeowners. This granite is typically primarily white but may include veins of brown or grey. An all-white kitchen has become a trend in recent years, making this stone a popular choice. These slabs run about $40 per square foot. 
  • Silver Cloud: The appearance of these slabs mimics the name. Cloud-like puffs and swirls of white and grey hues appear on these slabs, making them a well-matched pick for light and dark-themed kitchens. Silver Cloud slabs run about $55 per square foot. 
  • Ubatuba: The rich green hues of this stone make a splash in a kitchen, with splashes of black and gold. These slabs usually cost about $60 per square foot. 
  • Black Galaxy: Splattered with bold bronze hues, this granite color is a popular pick. Set against the deep black color of the stone, the sparkles of bronze stand out, offering a classy appearance. These slabs cost about $70 per square foot.
  • Absolute Black: Pure, undisturbed black hues dominate these granite slabs. Usually, these slabs run about $40 per square foot.
  • Crema Bordeaux: These granite slabs boast a beautiful blend of pinks, golds, browns, and blacks. They’re considered one of the more rare granite colors, so they cost a bit more at about $80 per square foot. 
  • Solarius: These slabs feature a creamy blend of light pigments with contrasting dark tones. It pairs wonderfully with nearly any cabinetry, thanks to its variety of colors, including yellows and blacks. This type of granite costs about $60 per square foot. 
  • Blue Louise: The vibrant, striking hues of this granite are a remarkable statement piece. Its rich, blue hues offer an almost royal, elegant feel to any space. This is among the most expensive granite that you can buy, coming in at about $100 per square foot. 

You can also find granite slabs in green, gray, gold, red, and different blues. Other extremely high-end blue granite options include Blue Pearl granite, River Blue granite, Blue Bahia granite, and Van Gogh granite. Some of the blue stone slabs, like Van Gogh granite slabs, can cost up to $400 per square foot!

Texture

Granite Texture

When you’re buying your granite slabs, you’ll have three options for texture: honed, polished, and leathered. Polished granite countertops feature a glossy finish. All granite countertops start this way, so this option is available at no additional cost. 

Honed granite countertops will tack on an additional $10 to $20 per square foot. The installation process becomes challenging with this option, hence the added price. They feature a matte finish and require regular sealant application. 

Leathered granite counters will cost you an extra $15 to $25 per square foot. The unique texture and low availability drive the price. Producing this texture takes a while and leaves the stone with small ridges and dips on the surface. Usually, this texturing is done on a dark-colored stone, as lighter colors aren’t strong enough to withstand the process. 

Type

While most granite countertops come in slab form, there are a few other options to deck out your kitchen with granite. If the pricing for a granite slab countertop is a bit too steep for you, consider a tile or modular granite countertop.

Granite tiles usually come with a polished texture and are 12-inch squares. For the most part, honing and leathering texturing aren’t available for these tiles. To avoid stains, you need to grout and seal the tiles. These countertops usually cost between $8 and $15 per square foot. 

Modular granite countertops are thinner than granite slabs. Due to the somewhat flimsier nature of the stone, countertops require reinforcement. They also come polished and require grout and sealant to avoid stains. This type of countertop typically runs about $25 to $40 per square foot. 

Labor And Delivery Expenses

Delivery fees and associated labor costs are additional factors that contribute to the cost. Depending on labor rates in your area, you may end up spending anywhere from $35 to $85 per hour. Costs may increase based o the size of the project and the countertop material. 

Generally, for an average-sized kitchen counter of 24 inches by 180 inches, most people pay between $600 and $1,500 for labor. Installing a kitchen countertop can take up to 20 hours, but a bathroom countertop is usually less than 10 hours. 

The labor costs usually include delivery fees, but not always. This is something you should clarify with your installation team. 

Of course, if you’re tackling the project by yourself, this eliminates this category altogether, save for any delivery expenses. 

Removal Of Existing Countertop

If the project involves removing an existing countertop, you may have to pay extra for its removal. Some contractors may include it in the total project for no added fee, but others may charge for the removal, especially if it’s heavy or exceedingly tricky to remove. 

Again, if you’re an avid DIYer and taking on the challenge yourself, this isn’t an area you’ll need to worry about. 

Cutouts

Installing a Countertop

Depending on the layout of your kitchen and which countertops you’re using granite for, you may need to pay for a cutout. It typically costs around $100 per sink cutout in a granite countertop. 

The cost of the cutout tacks onto the sink installation and price, which may cost you up to $400. If you want a cooktop mounted underneath the countertop, that cutout may run you around $200. This number doesn’t include the cost and installation of the cooktop, which usually costs about $650. 

The overall cost will rise if you need cutouts for hardware or plumbing throughout your kitchen. The specific price for custom cutouts varies based on the project. 

Additional Expenses

There are a few additional expenses that don’t necessarily fall into any significant category but are still crucial to budget for. If you want to do any special treatments on the granite, like a stain prevention treatment, this will drive up the total. 

Or, if you want to incorporate additional enhancements or improvements, like a granite backsplash, make sure you budget for that as well. A 4-inch backsplash is priced by the linear foot, but installation costs between $10 and $15. 

Due to the sheer weight of granite countertops, the underlying materials need to be sturdy. If you need to have repairs done on the countertops or surrounding walls, this will add to the project’s overall cost. 

Why Is Granite So Expensive?

Why Is Granite So Expensive

As you’ve probably noticed by now, granite can be exceptionally expensive. The lofty price of this natural stone is driven by supply and demand, like any other project. The more rare the granite, the more expensive it is. And, the more square footage you have to cover, the pricier it’ll be.

It’s a natural stone, so manufacturers can’t necessarily just produce more granite. Sure, they can make countertops that mimic natural granite, but it isn’t the same thing. 

What Is The Most Inexpensive Type Of Granite For A Countertop?

You have a few options if you’re looking for the least expensive granite for your countertops. Unless you have your heart set on a natural slab of granite, you could choose to install granite tiles, which are considerably cheaper than whole slabs. 

However, if you love the looks of the massive, natural granite slab countertops, tiles probably won’t cut it for you. So, consider some of the less expensive types. Polished textured granite will be your cheapest option out of the texture trio, and colors like black, green, tan, and gray will be the least expensive colors. 

With that said, these colors aren’t always the cheapest. The price also hinges on several factors beyond color, but these are a few of the colors that tend to fall towards the cheaper end of the spectrum.