After cabinets, kitchen countertops are among the most expensive purchases. Countertop materials range from wood to plastics to metal to stone, and you can save plenty by shopping for the best price. The table below shows prices Consumers' Checkbook’s mystery shoppers were quoted for granite countertops, using the exact same design and the same type (Uba Tuba), finish, and thickness of granite, with the dealer supplying the granite, and fabricating and installing the countertop.

As you can see, prices varied by more than $1,250, from $1,368 to $2,635.

Of course, quality of fabrication and installation is at least as important as price. Check with friends, ask to see examples of a company’s recent installations, and note how closely a company’s staff listens to you and how carefully they measure.

You can obtain ratings of countertop suppliers and installers here.

Illustrative Granite Countertop Prices*

Price quoted
Granite Expo, Sterling, VA, 703-435-3350 $1368
Flintstone Marble & Granite, Rockville, MD, 301-340-2320 $1445
Artelye Marble & Granite, Beltsville, MD, 301-931-6616 $1461
Counter Intelligence, Springfield, VA, 703-579-6641 $1500
Pyramid Granite, Springfield, VA, 703-455-5757 $1600
Flintstone Marble & Granite, Ashburn, VA, 571-223-2970 $1669
GLB Tile & Marble, Alexandria, VA, 703-971-4104 $1680
Erin’s Marble & Granite, Chantilly, VA, 703-378-0015 $1762
Virginia Marble & Granite, Chantilly, VA, 703-378-5533 $1770
Designer Surfaces Unlimited, Frederick, MD, 301-831-4443 $1920
Stone & Tile World, Rockville, MD, 301-231-7777 $1950
Granite & Marble Express, Chantilly, VA, 703-378-9520 $1968
Kitchen & Bath Depot, Rockville, MD, 301-942-8092 $2060
Dominion Granite & Marble, Ashburn, VA, 703-369-7625 $2082
Fairfax Marble & Granite, Chantilly, VA, 703-378-1080 $2150
The Granite Outlet, Alexandria, VA, 703-212-4811 $2152
Abka Marble & Granite Countertops, Rockville, MD, 301-610-7600 $2154
Marblex Design International, Fairfax, VA, 703-698-5595 $2436
Washington Marble & Granite, Ijamsville, MD, 301-831-1323 $2635
*Price quotes are for specified 3-centimeter-thick Uba Tuba granite countertops with backsplash and standard square edge and include fabrication and installation.