Changing lifestyles, new design trends and the “hot buttons” of the consumer product have a great influence on materials, colors and styles for table tops, which continue to grow as both an aesthetic and functional function in today’s new and remodeled kitchens.
It is one of several key findings in a nationwide survey conducted by Kitchen & Bathroom Design News among kitchen retailers and designers who report that countertops – largely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic – have increasingly become the focal point of modern kitchens, and they serve not only in their traditional roles of cooking, dining, tidying up and entertaining , but as a multifunctional space for homework, hobbies, work from home projects and various other activities.
Despite the dizzying range of colors, materials, features and other choices, kitchen consumers are very specific when it comes to the criteria they consider when choosing their countertops. KBDN study found.
According to the results of the survey conducted last month, key factors in choosing a tabletop include material, color, durability, affordability and sustainability. Sanitary benefits have also become increasingly important, say dealers and designers KBDN. Similarly, cost is also a factor in homeowners’ choice of countertop material, although it seems that customers are increasingly willing to invest – and even stretch their budget – to achieve the material, functionality and overall aesthetics they want .
QUARTZ LEADING MATERIAL
According to the results of the study, constructed quartz continues to be the countertop material that retailers and designers report growing fastest in demand among their kitchen customers.
Specifically KBDN study showed that engineered quartz countertops are seen by almost 33% of respondents as the countertop they see growing fastest in demand (see figure 1).
In comparison, quartzite – natural sandstone fused under heat and pressure with glittering quartz crystals – is considered the fastest growing kitchen worktop material of approx. 17% of respondents in the survey, while granite is seen as the fastest growing among just over 9%. of the design professionals surveyed. Other table top choices include solid surface (7%), marble (5%), sintered stone (4.6%) and concrete (3.3%). Outdoor-friendly surfaces are also seen as increasing in popularity, along with the growing trend for outdoor living.
In terms of color, white / cream (45%) and gray (24.4%) are the most in-demand colors, according to survey respondents. Black is preferred by about 12.6% of designers’ customers. Glossy and matte surfaces are preferred approximately equally by their customers, report surveyed design professionals (see figure 2).
Dealers and designers also report that customers are increasingly drawn to countertops that have subtle patterns and movement, unlike other options. That KBDN survey showed, for example, that 62.5% of the dealers and designers surveyed reported that tabletops with subtle patterns were customers’ preference. In contrast, only 18.8% said their customers prefer marble-look surfaces, while 12.5% said their clients prefer tabletops with dramatic patterns or movement, and 6.3% said clients prefer solid-colored tops.
OTHER KEY CRITERIA
The importance of choosing countertops with clear sanitary / health benefits has apparently become increasingly important to customers, undoubtedly as a result of increased awareness of the benefits of antimicrobial protection due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
For example, about 55% of their customers consider hygiene benefits such as easy-to-clean and antimicrobial protection to be either “very important” (42%) or “extremely important” (13.2%), according to dealers and designers surveyed. At the same time, surveyed design professionals say that sanitary benefits are “moderately important” for about 24% of their customers. In comparison, only about 20% of their customers believe that hygiene services are only “slightly important” (18.3%) or “not important at all” (1.9%), the survey respondents report (see figure 3).
Durability is also still an important factor in the choice of countertop material, with around 55% of retailers and designers surveyed saying durability is “very important” to customers, and around 37% saying durability is “extremely important.” In contrast, only about 1.3% of customers feel that the durability of the tabletop is “not at all” important (see Figure 4).
Affordability is, as mentioned earlier, somewhat less of a factor in choosing a tabletop.
That KBDN for example, the survey showed that only about 36% of their customers consider affordability to be either “extremely” important (8.5%) or “very” important “(25%), said survey respondents. of retailers and designers’ customers, however, that affordability was only “moderately” important, while more than 10% said it was either only “slightly” important (8%) or “not at all important” (2.4%) (see Figure 5).
Other key survey results were as follows:
- Regardless of the choice of material, kitchen customers generally look for neutral countertops that fit seamlessly with the overall aesthetics of the kitchen, as opposed to bold countertops with “wow” appeal, according to the results of the survey. Specifically, nearly three-quarters of their customers prefer neutral tones as opposed to spray tops, dealers and designers say. KBDN.
- Environmental friendliness is an important factor in the choice of countertop material among only about half of today’s kitchen customers, said retailers and designers KBDN. Specifically, about 64% of respondents reported that environmental friendliness was only “slightly important” (39.9%) or “not important at all” (23.9%) as a factor in the selection among their customers. In comparison, less than 10% said that environmental friendliness was either “extremely important” or “very important.” ▪
Multifunctional worktops called ‘Priority’ for kitchens
PALO ALTO, CA – Homeowners are making room in their kitchen remodeling budget to prioritize large, multifunctional countertops, in part in response to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on American lifestyle, a major new study has found.
According to the 2022 Houzz Kitchen Trends Study, more than a third of homeowners surveyed (35%) “jumped” on countertops, which were upgraded by more than nine out of 10 homeowners, the most common feature being improved during kitchen renovations.
“Obviously, homeowners are willing to spend a little more to get exactly what they want in countertops that are both beautiful and practical, despite rising prices for labor, products and materials,” said Marine Sargsyan, senior economist. for Palo Alto, CA. -based online platform for home renovation and design.
When it comes to choosing new kitchen countertops, homeowners choose materials based on appearance and feel, durability and ease of cleaning over cost, said Houzz, whose online survey was conducted among nearly 2,400 U.S. Houzz users who are in the middle, planning or recently have completed a kitchen renovation.
Constructed quartz and granite are the most popular countertop materials (42% and 24%, respectively) despite tariff and pandemic-induced price increases, Houzz reported. Of the more than one in five renovating homeowners who choose an island countertop material that contrasts with their primary countertops, over a third choose butcher block or wood countertop. Aesthetically, homeowners are increasingly choosing white for their countertops during renovations.
Among other survey results:
- Popular large islands: After a kitchen renovation, every fifth homeowner says that a top activity on their island is work, an increase of 4% from 2021. Homeowners make room for this activity, with almost two out of five islands stretching more than 7 feet in length, an increase of five percentage points from last year. Homeowners are also making the room brighter, with the vast majority installing new light fixtures over islands (92%).
- White and gray dominate as top colors: White continues to lead as the best choice for kitchen cabinets, back plates and walls. Gray is the most common alternative to white, with 27% of refurbished homeowners painting kitchen walls gray, 13% laying gray floors, and 11% choosing a gray backboard.
- Appliances Get a boost of high-tech features: Appliances are the second most common feature that homeowners roll out during kitchen renovations (27%). Over a third of the upgraded devices include high-tech features, an increase of six percentage points from the previous year. The most popular features in kitchen appliances are wireless and smartphone controls (26%), an increase of eight percentage points from 2021.
- Abundant beverage refrigerators: Nearly one in five homeowners incorporate beverage refrigerators into their refurbished kitchens, and 14% add wine refrigerators.
Homeowners looking for ‘everything you can imagine’
CHICAGO – Homeowners seem to be throwing an extremely wide net, and using willingly when it comes to choosing materials, styles and colors for kitchen countertops.
That is the consensus among a nationwide sample of kitchen design professionals, who were asked by last month Kitchen & Bathroom Design News.
“It’s very difficult to answer questions about design trends and demand,” said one designer KBDN. “One customer may have plain white countertops, while another has bold yearlings. It all depends on the project, the customer, who lives in the house, and what are their unique needs and goals.”
“It’s busy out there and customers demand everything you can imagine,” said another designer.
Dealers and designers also reported that customers are willing to spend a larger portion of their kitchen remodeling budget than they might have originally intended for countertops, as long as the specified tops meet their functional needs and enhance the overall design.
A selection of additional comments from dealers / designers KBDN include the following:
- “We see tabletops that stand out against the cabinet, but which are either solid or very subtly patterned so that they can better withstand the test of time (with more people left in place). Backsplash is where the ‘wow’ factor is, if desired. “
- “I see a growing trend for warmer colors in quartz with a marble look – caramels, brown, red plum (yes!). We need to get away from cold gray and very cool white with only gray. My clients are tired of that trend or they’re afraid I’ll tell them that’s what they ‘should’ do. “
- “We sell about 50% quartz for subtle patterns and 50% granite for bold patterns. But lately we’ve seen an increase in demand for more expensive materials (such as quartzite) and more unusual materials (such as dolomite). Both of these materials help the customer to make a more personal statement. “
- “People mix countertops, but white and light marble looks with some darker brown or gray veins all seem popular. Although some customers want thick edges, most prefer thin (3 cm).