Wood Counter Tops??

14 Replies

Anyone ever had any experience with using wooden counter tops...Have seen this on Pinterest and seems really cheap (50 bucks total) but is it durable?  They are using 2x10s and 2x8s and staining them different colors...Would be easy to make like new, but wondering about if they really do hold up to wear and tear...Any thoughts? By the way, this is a complete gut!  Brand new cabinets, counters, etc...I attached a picture for your viewing pleasure!  I've already ripped it all out and am down to the floor joists and wondering should I order counter tops that are prefab or do the wood idea.  I only paid 3500 for the house, putting in 15k in renovations, and it will rent in the 550-600 range, but tenants will be ROUGH on it.

One of my friends has wood countertops in her old family home. They survived three children and 20+ years and have held up well.

It depends how well you're going to be taking care of them. If you're going to have tenants take care of them, I wouldn't recommend it unless they're great tenants or you don't mind replacing them now and then. We have wooden countertops and have made the mistake of leaving water standing on the counter tops after doing some dishes and it caused pretty severe warping of the boards and separation of the joints.  That being said, we didn't put a product on it like Thompson's water seal or anything like that.  That may have helped.

Gorgeous.  However, I don't think polyurethane - even the ~7 coats this person used - will protect it from all the crap tenants will do to it.  Everything from leaving kool-aid sitting for a couple days to setting hot pots down to using it as a chopping board will mess up the finish.

If you want to gift your tenants with hot pads and cutting boards, it might be workable, but I personally don't see how polyurethane is going to hold up.  

Medium cluebussol logo3inLinda Weygant CPA, Clue Business Services, Inc. | [email protected] | Podcast Guest on Show #244

Wood meaning butcher block?  I would go with these and have them in a kitchen that has granite, but not for a cutting surface which means you will seal them.  Also - for rentals, I would not spring for American made -- I would go to a place like Lumber Liquidator and pickup Chinese made butcher block as it is much cheaper.  It's glued together with smaller pieces and is much heavier because of the amount of glue - but once it's sealed up - it will last.  It looks nice too. Incidentally - they can be sanded and resealed if a tenant abuses them (cuts on them, stains them etc).

I hope that helps.

Medium erm logoMichael Roy MBA, EastRoy Management, LLC

Originally posted by @Michael Roy :

Wood meaning butcher block?  I would go with these and have them in a kitchen that has granite, but not for a cutting surface which means you will seal them.  Also - for rentals, I would not spring for American made -- I would go to a place like Lumber Liquidator and pickup Chinese made butcher block as it is much cheaper.  It's glued together with smaller pieces and is much heavier because of the amount of glue - but once it's sealed up - it will last.  It looks nice too. Incidentally - they can be sanded and resealed if a tenant abuses them (cuts on them, stains them etc).

I hope that helps.

 The link the OP included was for a DIY project from Pinterest, not anything purchased from anywhere else.  Check it out, it's pretty cool.  

Medium cluebussol logo3inLinda Weygant CPA, Clue Business Services, Inc. | [email protected] | Podcast Guest on Show #244

@Linda Weygant I took a look, but I don't love it to be honest.  Note that is just my opinion of course so if the discussion is Plywood vs Formica or any other material -- then the things to consider are time it will take to fabricate and install as well as what your competition in your market is offering / market demands.

@Kyle Penland - How long will it take you to build and install the plywood counter top -- and what is your time worth.  Is it dense enough to handle tenants?  It was mentioned that tenants will be hard on counter tops.

What else is being installed in the rentals in your market?  Is butcher block valued or in demand from your market?  Price wise this doesn't seem like it would over improve from a materials stand point -- but in 2 years will it need to be replaced where as you could get longer life out of another product?  

I don't know to be honest, just asking to ask.  

I hope that helps.

Medium erm logoMichael Roy MBA, EastRoy Management, LLC

Thanks for the replies. I think it will be a fairly quick process but not sure about the upkeep. Since I will have a U shaped layout, Formica countertops are going to run 12-15 hundred verses 50 bucks this will run. I'm going to try it. Worst case is I lose 50 bucks. Will update you how it goes. I may even try and find the paint that goes on a bar top? I will post after pics.

This definitely sounds like an option for the potential cost savings alone. Keep us posted!

Medium erm logoMichael Roy MBA, EastRoy Management, LLC

It looks like a small counter top.  Lowes has an 8' piece of laminate for $154 and $20 a running foot is on the high side.

You want to do counter tops right and do them once.

As a painter, I think this is a great idea. Whatever damage they do, short if snapping it in half, can easily be repaired at move out by sanding and refinishing the surfaces. Boom! Brand new countertops for next to nothing and as far as I can tell you could do this for years and years until you sand the last layer of counter top off. Seems very cost effective and simple. I'd do it. 

Someone recommended corian counter tops for rough tenants. Maybe look into that as well? 

Also, I think the first pictures on that Pinterest page look really awful. The lighter wood with the darker cabinets looks cheap and tacky. The white cabinets with the dark wood looked nice though. So if you're going to do this, make sure the wood contrasts or compliments the cabinets nicely.