There are many options when it comes to countertops: granite, soapstone, silestone, laminate, stainless steel, tile, quartz, granite, butcher block.
My favorite is silestone because I'm one of those people who love to cut on their countertops. I would rather use my countertop, spray method, and wipe it clean then have to hand wash or run a cutting board through the washer everytime I need to cut anything! We have 3 cutting boards! Silestone is also attractive (pictured right).
My husband would probably love it to if he knew more about it as an option. His current favorite however is granite countertops, which I'll admit are also pretty nice. The thing both of our favorites have in common? Price, they generally run around the same price (depends on your area) and that price is expensive, especially for how much counterspace we have! I also hate laminate, although it can look nice ultimately its cheap!
Since I'm remodeling the house on a budget of under $10,000 I need to save all the money I can. So when you have to work with less than you get creative and get your hands dirty! I have 3 countertops in our new house and they all need redone! In the kitchen it has a wood grain look (dreadful), in the master bath we have orange yes ORANGE laminate countertops, in the other bathroom we have green laminate countertops... are ya'll noticing a theme... they are all laminate and they are all really old!
So while many would say to splurge on the counter tops I am not sure that I would get a good return on them... and I would really like my custom shower! I will still call for quotes on granite and silestone but even if I did splurge it would be in the kitchen only, which would still leave the bathrooms...
Viable DIY options on the cheap: Tile Countertops (you can even get granite tile), painted countertops, poured concrete countertops, or butcher block countertops. Lets begin by marking countertops off my list.
Butcherblock countertops look best in a bright kitchen and I plan on staining my cabinets to a darker rich espresso hue. These aren't the countertops for me. I did stumble across a couple DIY budget kitchen makeovers however and they are a great go to depending on what your style is. These can be had very reasonably at IKEA, and yes you can order them online. While not my favorite kitchen design incorporating butcher block counters on the left you can get an idea of what they look like.
Poured concrete is not a bad idea. Remodelaholic.com has in my opinion the best how to on how to do poured concrete countertops. The best part of their how to is they do it right over the old so you don't have to worry about building out new countertops! Pictured on the right is their finished product. They decided not to stain which is something I would choose to do myself but its nice and under $200!
My favorite option when I first began looking at ideas was the painted countertop, after I had established that if sealed it held up well. Rustoleam has counter transformation cans you can buy but DIY is not hard. I found out about it on prettylilposies.blogspot.com. The pictured finished product on the left is gorgeous right? Her mom did a $250 kitchen remodel! The cost for the countertops? She said $20, I would say maybe $75 I do think she left off the cost of the sealer and maybe the primer as well.
If you get a chance check out her blog. Her cabinet transformation was sensational and of course was done on the cheap. If you haven't noticed yet there is a theme going on this blog, it is conserving money! Anyway she estimated the tiles cost her $5 total, she went bargain hunting!
Another tile countertop I like is one that is actually one you would use in the kitchen. This came from http://queenofmytrailer.wordpress.com
Pictured on the left I think its quiet cute! She did all the work herself and blogged about it including a little advice. Her total for the project came in right under $300, which as she put it is 1/2 the cost of new laminate countertops!
I have to say, I love the internet! Without it I never would have known about, considered, or though I could do many of these options. I also love my fellow bloggers and I hope you check out their blogs, they have some excellent posts! As always I would love feedback so feel free to soundoff below!