Who doesn’t want the rich look of natural stone benchtops in their kitchen? Sadly, not everybody is prepared to fork out thousands of dollars to upgrade their laminate benchtops to granite, particularly when the plan is to sell your home and upgrade to a new residence anyway. Professional home stagers assure us that stone benchtops are a favourite of buyers in the Sydney market and upgrading the work surfaces in your kitchen could boost your home sale over the top. Alas, it’s not always an expense you can justify.

Today, though, there is excellent news. There are products now available that can help you paint your way to a faux stone benchtop for less than $100 and in a day’s time. There are a growing number of paint companies that provide the kits necessary to complete your kitchen make-over, so do your homework by looking online for companies that sell stone paint you can use on laminate surfaces. When your kit arrives, set aside a full day for the project and get started. (It’s not a good idea to break this project into more than one day – the resulting paint pattern may differ from day to day, and you don’t want obvious differences.)

Clean: Be certain to remove all dirt and grease from the surface you’ll be painting. Spend extra time in corners and on vertical surfaces like splashbacks. Tri Sodium Phosphate is a great and fairly inexpensive all-purpose cleaner for such projects.

Prep: If your benchtop has dings, cracks, or other damage you can use wood putty as a filler, then sand with fine sandpaper to smooth it out before you continue.
Paint the Basecoat: Your kit will include a black primer to use on the benchtop as a first layer. This black will show through in places when you apply the other colours on top. (Yes this is just like the faux painting process you might have used previously to paint your fireplace to look like fine marble. You will be using the same basic technique.)

Call Upon your Inner Artist: When the primer coat is thoroughly dry – this will take about eight hours – use a natural sponge to dab and blot the mineral colours in random patterns over the black to create a granite look. Don’t swipe or make stripes, just dab the sponge here and there to achieve a natural look. This layer will take approximately four hours to dry completely.

Top Coat: After the ‘mineral coat’ has dried for the appropriate amount of time, give your benchtop an overall light sanding to smooth out any unevenness. At that point, you will finish with a clear top coat which will dry for another four hours.

Caution: In order to cure properly, your dazzling new benchtop will require about two weeks in order to cure thoroughly. In the interim, don’t put heavy objects on it that could dent or otherwise mar the surface. The automotive grade top coat acrylic will harden to a rock-solid surface that locks out moisture and resists bacteria, making your kitchen easy to clean and maintain.
The paint included in your kit will cover about 3.25 square metres of benchtop. The products available through GianiGranite.com.au are water based and low odour and come in a number of different stone finishes from granite to slate.

Your newly transformed kitchen will have a more upscale look without the tedious maintenance and prohibitive cost associated with natural stone benchtops. As with all other upgrades to your home, we always suggest you discuss this project with your professional home stagers before you begin. Your design specialist will help to guide you through the possible make-over projects so that each investment you make in your kitchen will pay off in a big way.

This invaluable guidance is the reason most home-sellers in Australia today seek the help of professional home stagers to transform their properties. In order to get top-dollar for your home or apartment, it’s important that each change you make is designed to increase the value of your home and appeal to the broadest group of home buyers possible. Before you list your property for sale, consult with a professional home stager first. You’ll be glad you did.

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