Lifestyle. Granite, quartzite, engineered stone/quartz, ultra compact, porcelain, glass and solid surface are fairly low maintenance materials. Except for solid surface, all these materials are both hard and durable. Sealers improve the stain resistance of granite, marble and quartzite. Engineered stone/quartz, ultra compact, porcelain, glass and solid surface are all non-porous. Solid surface is soft and can be scratched. Marble, although beautiful, requires more work and diligence in a kitchen. It is soft and therefore can scratch. As well, the surface of marble will etch if exposed to acidic substances for extended period of time (lemons, vinegar).
Look. Marble, Granite and Quartzites are available in many different colours and patterns; natural depth and movement. Natural stone remains the most popular surface for countertops. Engineered materials offer colours that are not available in nature—very white, red with mirrored bits etc, and solid colours.
Budget. Natural stone offers the broadest range of pricing to meet your budget needs.