First, it's important to point out that not all farmhouse sinks are super expensive. In fact, you can checkout our list of the best farmhouse sinks for some that are quite budget-friendly. However, it's true that generally speaking, farmhouse sinks - like the ones with the exposed apron front - are more expensive than traditional top-mount sinks.
But why? Why are farmhouse sinks so expensive compared to the top-mount options?
There are a few reasons for this, which also give us some rationale for buying an undermount farmhouse sink.
At the end of the day, they're just nicer and more desirable.
1. Farmhouse sinks are larger
Farmhouse sinks, by design, are bigger and heavier than top-mount sinks. This is especially true when you're talking about fireclay farmhouse sinks, some of which can get close to 100 pounds. They're more expensive to make and to ship, contributing to a higher retail price tag.
2. Farmhouse sinks are often made of fireclay or copper
Speaking of fireclay, it's one of the more popular farmhouse sink materials, along with copper. Both of these materials are much heavier and stronger than traditional stainless steel like you often see in top-mount sinks. The added weight from this material and the additional steps involved in manufacturing cause prices to go up.
3. Shipping and Handling Expenses
With a larger sink and more weight to contend with, shipping and handling prices for these sinks will often be higher, even if you see "free shipping and handling." While you might have free shipping or decently-low shipping costs, you can bet that the real cost of shipping is simply "baked into" the retail cost of the sink itself.
4. The Made-by-Hand Factor
Many of the higher-end farmhouse sinks get hands-on attention, for some or much of their construction. The copper farmhouse sinks, for example, are often hammered out by hand to give it a more desirable weathered look and feel. This type of manufacturing is labor-intensive, thereby increasing the cost of the sink.
5. Increase in Demand
Farmhouse sinks are trendy and more functional than a traditional top-mount sink. They also are more aesthetically pleasing. All of these factors have combined to put them in much higher demand, which means their price will naturally be a bit higher, due to basic laws of supply and demand.
Is it worth the added cost?
The question you need to answer is whether or not the perks of a farmhouse sink are important enough to you to justify the added cost. For my wife and I, the benefits definitely outweighed the drawbacks. When we did our last kitchen renovation, the farmhouse sink was basically the only area where we didn't try to cut costs in some capacity.
But you have to decide that for yourself. In my own experience, based on the added size, the better look, and the improved functionality, the farmhouse sink was well worth it.
A good way to decide is to assess how much use your kitchen gets.
Do you cook often? Do you need the additional sink space?
Since we have four kids, our kitchen is what we'd call "high event" which leads to a lot of sink use. Having the added space of the farmhouse sink was super-helpful, in our case. Hopefully that helps you understand why farmhouse sinks are expensive and where your money is going if and when you purchase one.
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AUTHOR: Ryan is a DIYer, homeowner, and general fan of a clean, good-smelling kitchen.