Marble countertops are an excellent choice for those looking for an elegant, aesthetic countertop that will elevate the appearance of an. any style kitchen or bathroom.
Marble comes in a wide array of color and style choices, making it easy to find the perfect fit for your countertop. Marble tends to be a more pricey countertop material, and also requires regular maintenance to maintain its beautiful qualities.
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How Much Are Marble Countertops?
On average, a marble countertop will cost somewhere between $40 and $100 per square foot, depending on a variety of factors discussed in detail below. That means for a 50 square foot countertop, expect to pay between $2,000 and $5,000 total for a marble countertop.
The cost of a marble stone itself can range between $25 and $180 per square foot. The differences in price depend on the type of marble desired. Most homeowners spend $65-80 per square foot installed on marble counters.
You can use our Countertops Cost Calculator to estimate total prices for various countertop materials, including marble.
Cost To Install Marble Countertops
The cost of labor for installing a marble countertop is usually between $35 and $45 per hour, and the project takes approximately ten hours to complete.
For a 50 square foot countertop, expect to pay around $500 – 700 for installation, in addition to the cost of materials. In terms of total costs of marble countertops, installation costs make up around 20% of the project, whereas marble slabs themselves make up around 75% of the cost, with the other 5% covering tools and supplies needed.
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Factors That Increase The Total Cost Of Marble Counters
There are several important factors to consider when looking to budget for a marble countertop. The factors explained below all make a difference on the final cost of your marble counter, which can help you decide how to choose the best features within your budget for your new marble counter.
Removing an old countertop: if you have to remove the old countertop before installing the new marble countertop, that will add to the price. Expect to pay somewhere around $400 for the removal.
Marble thickness: the thicker the marble, the more expensive the marble countertop will cost.
Marble quality: the quality of the marble makes a big difference on the price: per square foot marble can cost between $25 and $180. The choice of colors and finishes will make a difference in price.
Countertop size: American houses on average have 40 square feet of counter space. Full slabs are always cheaper to install than smaller pieces, and the size of slab varies by contractor. Some contractors may offer a discount for counters above a square footage threshold.
Additional features: if you are interested in a marble backsplash or kitchen island in addition to a marble countertop, this will naturally incur additional charge for the material and installation.
Countertop design: perfect rectangles are the easiest countertop design, while other shapes are more difficult to cut and install, costing more.
If you are unsure whether marble is the right choice for your kitchen, check out our in-depth guide on the Best Kitchen Countertop Materials.
Marble Slab Prices Per Square Foot
The cost of a marble countertop varies based on the type of marble used in the countertop. The table below outlines different types of marble and the cost per square foot for each type. The cost per square foot is an estimate, and prices will vary depending on a variety of factors.
|Marble Countertop Type||Cost Per Sq Ft|
Natural Marble Stone vs Manufactured Marble
Manufactured (cultured) marble, unlike natural marble, is fully non-porous, meaning no stains will sink into its surface, and bacteria and germs cannot grow easily on it. This is especially useful for kitchens and bathrooms, which can be susceptible to stains and bacteria growth.
While natural marble comes in a wide array of styles and colors, manufactured marble tends to have more limited color choices, offered usually in black or white.
Cost of Marble vs Other Countertop Materials
The table below compares the average cost per square foot of a marble countertop with other popular countertop choices. Marble is a more expensive choice than a laminate or ceramic tile countertop, while it is cheaper than a copper or glass countertop.
The prices listed are averages and the actual cost may fall outside of the listed range.
|Countertop Material||Cost per Square Foot||Total Cost (40 sq. ft)|
|Marble Countertops||$40 – $100||$1,600 – $4,000|
|Granite Countertops||$50 – $100||$2,000 – $4,000|
|Quartz Countertops||$50 – $100||$2,000 – $4,000|
|Copper Countertops||$100 – $130||$4,000 – $5,200|
|Limestone Countertops||$65 – $150||$2,600 – $6,000|
|Onyx Countertops||$50 – $200||$2,000 – $8,000|
|Glass Countertops||$80 – $100||$3,200 – $4,000|
|Terrazzo Countertops||$50 – $100||$2,000 – $4,000|
|Corian Countertops||$40 – $60||$1,600 – $2,400|
|Ceramic Tile Countertops||$5 – $10||$200 – $400|
|Concrete Countertops||$40 – $80||$1,600 – $3,200|
|Paperstone Countertops||$40 – $100||$1,600 – $4,000|
|Caesarstone Countertops||$40 – $100||$1,600 – $4,000|
|Soapstone Countertops||$40 – $85||$1,600 – $3,400|
|Butcher Black Countertops||$40 – $60||$1,600 – $2,400|
|Bamboo Countertops||$25 – $60||$1,000 – $2,400|
|Solid Surface Countertops||$35 – $65||$1,400 – $2,600|
|Laminate Countertops||$25 – $40||$1,000 – $1,600|
|Acrylic Countertops||$15 – $25||$600 – $1,000|
|Formica Countertops||$15 – $30||$600 – $1,200|
Cost Of Repairing A Marble Countertop
A marble countertop is likely to endure some small-scale, minor damage that is easily fixable DIY. For small damage like chipped surfaces, a DIY marble repair kit can be purchased from a hardware store for around $50.
More complex, significant damage will require the work of a professional, which will cost you between $200 – $600 for the repair and $80 – 90 per hour for the professional’s labor.
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Marble Counter Prices Based On Marble Type
Lets delve a little deeper in to the the ten most popular varieties or type of marble stone that are available in the US. As you will see, depending on the type of marble, price can change drastically, and a lot of it has to do with the particular look and color of the stone as well as its availability.
Pink marble is the most affordable type of marble, costing around $25 per square foot. It is commonly found throughout India, China, and Greece. Be warned that there is a countertop material called Pink Marble from Tennessee, but it is not actual marble.
Carrara is the most popular type of marble, and is affordable, costing around $40-45 per square foot. It originates in Italy and is used frequently across the world because of its abundance, making appearances in statues, monuments, and grand buildings. While it is usually white it can sometimes have a more blue-grey hue.
Like Carrara, Statuario is mined in Italy, but it is rarer and therefore considered more precious. The visible grains in Statuario are fine and give the stone a glimmering appearance, and the veins in Statuario are grey and gold colors. Statuario is becoming increasingly rare, and the price reflects how much it is sought after, at $50-60 per square foot.
Crema Marfil Marble
Crema Marfil marble originates in Spain and is more warm-hued than other marble types like Carrara. It is beige colored with a more subtle veining that blends in with the background yellow. Crema Marfil marble costs $65 per square foot.
Bianca marble is related to Carrara, and is mined in the same region of Italy. Its irregular, looser veins set it apart from Carrara marble, but it still has the same creamy white color. Bianca marble costs $60 per square foot.
Cultured marble is manufactured, making it an incredibly versatile countertop material. Stone particles, resins, and pigments are combined and molded, giving vast choice to the buyer in terms of color, design, and countertop shape.
Out of the mold, cultured marble has a sleek, clean appearance and does not require sealing like natural marble. Cultured marble costs around $65 per square foot, but the cost can vary significantly depending on the desired countertop.
While Travertine looks like and is sold as marble, technically it is another form of limestone that occurs in more creamy, rusty, and tan colors.
Travertine is found across the world, including across the Middle East, Europe, South America, and in Texas and Colorado. Travertine marble costs approximately $75 per square foot.
Danby marble is found exclusively in the town of Vermont, Canada. Like the marbles found in Italy, it has a crisp white color with gold veining.
Danby marble is found in two types: Eureka Danby, with thick grey veining over a gold base, and Imperial Danby, with light medium veining. Imperial Danby is the more popular choice for countertops, but it is rarer. Expect to pay around $80 per square foot for Danby marble.
Calacatta marble is mined exclusively in Calacatta, Italy, and is known for its clear, pure white color with distinct, large veining. The marble is one of the most expensive type on the market, and costs around $180 per square foot. Expect to pay more for Calacatta marble with particularly defined veins and pure white color.
Portoro Genuine Extra Marble
This unique, high-end marble is a beautiful black color with gold and white veining. It is incredibly rare and sought-after, and generally costs around $300 per square foot.
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Selecting Marble Thickness And Soundness
The most popular marble thickness is 1 ¼ inches thick. Thickness varies widely in the marble countertop industry.
In more recent years thick marble is seen as modern and aesthetic, and marble countertops are offered in thicknesses as much as 2 inches and above. Custom countertops can be made as thick as desired.
¾ inch thickness
1 ¼ inch thickness
2 inch thickness
Marble comes in four classifications of soundness, from A to D. The classification of soundness focuses on the appearance of the marble and if there are any required repairs or other flaws.
A: No repairs required, very few flaws, subtle veining
B: Few flaws, contains fissures and visible pitting
C: Has flaws that require factory repairing
D: Has significant flaws that must be repaired, may contain dramatic veins and bright colors
Types Of Marble Counter Finishes
There are many different marble countertop finishes to choose from, all with their own benefits and drawbacks. The table below outlines the important features of different finishes to help you choose the best one for your marble countertop.
|Flamed finish||Gives the marble a natural roughness||Natural appearance||Easily accumulates dirt in the crevices, making flamed finish marble poorly suited for kitchens. Best used in outdoor walking surfaces|
|Leathered finish||Depending on the minerals in the marble, the finish will give a matte appearance or a non-reflective shine. The raising in the marble resembles leather. Better for darker colored marble||Less porous, good at hiding fingerprints and other marks||Not a smooth surface|
|Caressed finish||Like leathered finish but adds polish, giving shine||Low porosity, good at hiding blemishes||Not a smooth surface|
|Polished finish||Gives the marble a smooth, reflective quality||Less porous, so good for kitchens or other stain-prone environments, and requires less frequent sealing||Shows scratches easily|
|Honed finish||Gives the marble a matte finish, giving the marble a smooth, soft feel, not reflective||Hides imperfections well||Higher levels of porosity so susceptible to staining|
Best Type Of Marble For Kitchen Counters
For those looking for crisp white kitchen countertops, Carrara marble and Statuario marble are beautiful choices. Their pristine white surfaces makes it easy to spot any blemishes dirt, easing the cleaning process. They are an ideal pick for a high-end kitchen remodel.
Cultured marble is another practical choice for kitchen countertops. It has a completely non-porous surface, meaning that any stains from cooking will not sink into the countertop and stain it. The lack of porosity will also prevent any germs or bacteria from growing in the countertop, keeping the kitchen safe and clean.
Best Type Of Marble For Bathroom Counters
If you are doing a bathroom remodel, and want to add a touch of luxury with marble countertops, its best to install cultured marble. It has a fully non-porous surface, which will prevent germs and bacteria from remaining on the counter.
This ensures that no unhealthy germs and bacteria grow on the countertop and linger in the bathroom. While cultured marble is not true marble, it is manufactured to look exactly like real marble.
Does a Marble Countertop Need to be Sealed?
A marble countertop should be sealed when it is first installed and then re-sealed every four to six months. This will prevent stains, as well as more permanent damage from etching and other harm to the surface.
While sealing helps prevent stains, it is not a perfect guarantee against staining, so be sure to quickly clean up any spills in order to prevent staining.
How To Remove Stains From Marble
Properly maintaining marble is essential to keeping the aesthetic qualities of the marble.
Acid can harm marble, so beware of cutting fruits such as tomatoes directly on the countertop as that can cause damage.
When cleaning your marble countertop, do not use acidic cleaners or abrasive cleaners. Regularly brush away crumbs and light stains with a clean wet cloth or sponge. If necessary, dilute some non-abrasive cleaning solution in warm water and use it to clean the stain.
If that method does not work, a baking soda mix is a great, easy way to remove the stain. Mix baking soda with water and apply it to the location.
Leave it for twenty-four hours, and then remove it gently with a knife, wiping up the excess with a sponge. Repeat this as many times as needed until the stain is completely removed.
Marble vs Granite Countertops
Granite and marble are the most popular choices for stone countertops. Both lend an effortless beauty to the countertop and can be installed in a wide range of colors, shapes, and designs.
Each type of countertop has its own pros and cons, so this breakdown can help you choose which type of stone countertop will be the best fit for your needs.
Granite countertops generally are more affordable than marble. There are a wide range of colors and styles available, and granite is an incredibly durable, heat-resistant material. Also, granite countertops are less maintenance compared to marble countertops.
The downsides of granite are its susceptibility to scratches and stains. Also, the composition of the granite can vary widely between slabs, making it difficult to choose the exact right appearance.
Marble, similarly to granite, comes in a large variety of styles and colors. In contrast to granite, marble has beautiful vein patterns that differ in each piece of marble.
Homeowners often choose marble over granite when they are looking for a white color countertop, and nothing really beats the natural dazzling white colors of marble. If you are looking for a white or light color kitchen counter but don’t want the downsides and price tag of marble stone, consider installing quartz countertops.
Like granite, marble is heat resistant.
Overall, however, marble tends to be less durable than granite, and also tends to be pricier. Like granite, it is susceptible to stains and scratches, but it also requires more maintenance.
Overall granite and marble are relatively similar countertop materials, with some important differences to keep in mind when choosing between them.
ROI of Marble Counters
Marble countertops can boost the value of your home, if you ever decide to sell it. This is especially true for higher-end properties, where prospective buyers are looking to see expensive, luxury materials and features used in a kitchen.
Typically, marble countertops have a high return on investment of 75%, meaning that you will receive back 75% of what you spent on the countertops when selling your house.
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