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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    2

    Default Horrible Kitchen Counter Question

    Hello all - need some feedback and/or suggestions. But a wee bit of background first:

    My husband and I moved into our home 4 years ago. It's nothing special and we had no desire to spend more than about 5 or 6 years here. We've done a lot of work to the place without spending much money, as we do the labor ourselves (new flooring in the downstairs, all new hardware, light fixtures, etc.). We are coming to the point where we would like to put it on the market within the next year and there is one large job remaining: the kitchen counters. They are tiled and I hate them with a passion as they are the same ceramic tiles as was used on the floor. Which makes me feel as if I am preparing food on the floor.

    Anywho, the people who installed these counter tops did so over what appears to be two layers of MDF with a thin cement board on top. And then used liquid nails (YARGH!!!!) to adhere the counter to the cabinets. No screws were used at all. So my husband and I are looking at this and thinking of our options. We could spend a lot of time on the labor intensive job of trying to chip off the old tiles in order to put on new counters (I think trying to pry apart the top layers would be pointless as I believe they would have used the construction adhesive here as well). Or maybe put a skim coat of concrete over the whole mess but aren't sure how durable or practical that would be. We don't want to spend loads of money prior to putting the place on the market but I also don't want to leave the new owner with questionable counters. The other option is to do nothing and hope that leaving them as is wouldn't extend the time on market or actual selling price of the house by a large margin.

    Any suggestions and "here's what I would do" scenarios are greatly appreciated. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    5,441

    Default Re: Horrible Kitchen Counter Question

    Choose option 2 (to do nothing) and here's why:

    1. You said you didn't want to spend a lot of money.
    2. Offer the buyers an incentive called "kitchen remodel allowance", where you take less for the house and let the buyers choose a counter top of their liking.
    3. If you are going to spend any money at all to make your house more attractive, do it on the outside, to boost its "curb appeal", with things like: new exterior paint and improved landscape.
    4. Explain your plan to your realtor and press him/her to take a little less in commisions, to make a deal.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,617

    Default Re: Horrible Kitchen Counter Question

    If the countertops are in generally good condition, I would leave them alone, regardless of them matching the floor. Everyone's tastes are different, just because you don't like the counters doesn't mean that anyone else is even going to pay the slightest bit of attention to them.

    IF the counters become an issue during a sale, all you have to do is make an allowance for them as part of the terms of sale, such as reducing the price of the home by replacement value, or stipulating that the counters will be changed prior to the new owner taking possession.

    It is far easier to make an allowance than it is to have to change the tops unnecessarily. Let them be the headache of the next owner. As I said earlier, everyone has their own tastes, and maybe the new owner won't like what YOU change the tops to. Just food for thought.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Kansas City area
    Posts
    48

    Smile Re: Horrible Kitchen Counter Question

    I understand your concern - I've had the same since my house is for sale now. It's not worth the hassle or cost to you just because YOU don't like the counter. Replacing the ugly counter is not a matter of 'need' or function so let the new owner handle it. It may not appear so bad to them and that gives you more time & $ to get the curb appeal up to snuf. With so many foreclosures, realtors told me that "allowance" really isn't done anymore unless it's a safety issue. So don't wait for your projects to be complete unless they're structural - put it on the market while the interest is low.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Horrible Kitchen Counter Question

    Thank you for your responses. It's certainly not a project I felt good about tackling (or paying for) just prior to selling and seeing the unanimous "just leave it alone" responses has cemented this for me.

    So, given your input, I shall be doing touch ups on the interior and my husband will pointing his green thumbs to the front yard to peak curb appeal.

    Again, thank you.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,617

    Default Re: Horrible Kitchen Counter Question

    Quote Originally Posted by AnnaN View Post
    So, given your input, I shall be doing touch ups on the interior and my husband will pointing his green thumbs to the front yard to peak curb appeal.

    Again, thank you.
    This is the first thing you learn in real estate investing 101, keep your costs as low as possible for the greatest return possible. Back when I was doing flippers, all that was ever done was a thorough cleaning, and color spots/landscaping, MAYBE paint the exterior trim, and MAYBE some interior painting. Never do unnecessary repair or replacements.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: Horrible Kitchen Counter Question

    Miracote makes a concrete overlay material called MPC that is a commercial product that can be used to resurface contertops, it bounds to almost anything. I use it all the time to resurface concrete floors, I have even used it over plywood to make concrete floors for the upstairs of a house. The product is not badly priced also, $35 for the bag of cement and $135 for the catalyst, that covers 250 sq feet.

    Michael
    MVL Concrete

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