The two most common fears for people considering natural stone in their home is Etching and Staining. The good news is that with all the advances made with natural stone in recent years, these are not always permanent problems and can usually be rectified.
Etching is when the surface of the stone becomes dulled from its original finish. The etching is created when acids come into contact with the surface of the stone. Softer stones like marble and limestone can etch very easily, while harder stones like granite and quartzite are more difficult to etch. The most effective way to prevent etching from occurring is to be mindful when you are consuming acidic foods or drinks. You should also be careful not to use cleaners that are acidic in nature like certain bathroom cleaners, toilet bowl cleaners and lemon cleaners. Etching can be removed on softer stones with some polishing powder, but more severe cases might require resurfacing of the stone. Either way though, these issues should be fixable.
All stone surfaces can stain. Some stones are more porous and will stain much easier than others. Once a stone becomes stained, it can be difficult to remove. The best way to avoid the risk of staining is to make sure that your countertop has a good quality penetrating sealer applied. This sealer will buy you time when something has been spilled and allow you to wipe it up before doing any serious damage. Make sure that if you do spill something on your countertops to clean it up as quickly as possible. If an accident happens and a stain does occur, there are poultice products on the market that can assist in drawing the stain out.
Natural stones are very sensitive creatures. Etching and Staining are the two most common problems for consumers. The best advice I can give is to be aware of what you are using around your countertops at all times. If you stay on top of spills and the products you are using, you shouldn't have any serious issues and can enjoy the beauty of your home with its presence.