What about butcher block? I think that is a timeless look. We put in black formica countertops that look like granite. It was 12 years ago and granite was pricey back then. It still looks nice.
DL soapstone would work on your home as would butcher block. Stainless appliances are going out of style only to be replaced with a product called mirror white. It is basically white glass trimmed in chrome or stainless. Who think glass appliances are a smart idea....show of hands...didn't think so.
I'm continually amazed at how many prospective home buyers walk into a place and instantly say, this place will have to be updated and the place looks fine, IMO. I guess some people's idea of what is acceptable must be VERY high. Is it really necessary to update a kitchen, because you aren't wild about the cabinets or appliances? What if everything is in good condition and functions fine? I hope they are giving these useable items to the needy when they rip them out, instead of throwing them away. Not everyone can afford to be so choosey.
I only remember once or twice on Income Property where the homeowners gave the unwanted cupboards to a charity to repurpose. There is an HGTV show called Rehab Addict where the gal who rehabs homes in the Midwest (Minnesota, I think, but she is from Detroit), strictly uses materials that have been salvaged and repurposed. I am amazed at how she can go into a store that sells used kitchen cupboards and somehow make it work in these older homes. I love that she restores them back to their former beauty; many older homes have so much charm.
On one of the DIY crossovers (Kitchen Crashers) the host has asked that the cabinets be taken down carefully as they are recycling them. Then it showed the crew carrying them out to a truck with a charity logo painted on it.
I've seen it done on other shows as well, but not as often as it should be done.
Thanks for all the suggestions re new counter tops. I did have butcher's block when I re-did the kitchen in our last home and loved them.
I also wince when I see so much that could be re-used and it's just trashed. I hate seeing waste.
I think the young people we see on House Hunters who want everything to be high end are products of how our society has changed. My generation, brought up by parents who went thru the Depression, was taught that we saved until we could afford to up-grade. Now, people use credit to buy everything and anything. People don't seem to wait until they can afford things.
I especially appalled when I see a man wanting the flat screen tv to be part of the sale of the house and if it's not, he may not buy it. Good grief!