It’s the season of barbeques, and your granite counters are getting a workout. They’re serving as the foundation for helping you prep the skewers and slice up summer veggies, and they’ve handled their fair share of melted ice cream cones and popsicles.
However, have you ever wondered just how much America spends on granite counters, which have now become a staple in kitchens?
Just 20 years ago, stone countertops were a top-tier luxury, found in only the most stunning homes. Now, granite countertops have become a must-have, just like laundry hookups and open-floor plans.
Stone World Magazine conducts an annual survey to track granite and stone countertop trends around the country. For 15 years, the magazine has polled a number of stone manufacturers around the country, large and small, keeping tabs on spending habits and demands.
In 2015, 81 percent of fabricators reported an increase in sales. This has been the trend for the past 10 years, with only a few hiccups during the Great Recession.
Stone Is Here to Stay
Of the 81 percent who reported a revenue spike, the average growth was 17 percent. Only 3 percent of those surveyed said they saw a decline in 2015.
The No. 1 factor behind this growth has been an improved economy, although stone fabrication is a somewhat recession-proof industry. It’s during hard economic times that people flock to house flipping and renovation for sales, and real estate agents repeatedly tout that adding granite to kitchens is a good ROI.
Other fabricators say the increasing digital presence — including social media connections, mobile readiness and the ease of creating and updating their own websites ― has helped grow their businesses. New construction in many regions is also on the rise, and that gives fabricators more projects, more clients and more profits.
Bright Futures for Granite Counters
When asked about long-term trends in the industry, 89 percent of respondents say they see nothing but continued growth for the next 10 years. Many think oil prices will stay relatively low, which helps to nurture the economy. Consumers are also more educated, thanks to internet research and HGTV highlighting the benefits of natural stone countertops.
Granite remains the most popular pick in the United States, but quartz is quickly catching up, thanks to its proven durability and the fact it needs no maintenance. Classic stones like marble and limestone are also prime picks.
The cost of stone is also slightly declining, thanks to cutting-edge technology that makes fabrication quicker and easier. These savings are being passed down to consumers, who are quick to take advantage of luxury at a bargain.
Some business is coming from older homes undergoing renovations in which the tile and laminate countertops are replaced with thick slabs of natural stone. For many homeowners, this replacement tops their list of priorities.
Are you ready to tackle your own new construction or reno project? Call Intermountain Stone & Marble for help with all your granite counter needs.