Did you know that your granite does NOT come sealed? It comes installed all pretty and shiny and glossy, but it is NOT sealed.
Why is that such a big deal?
Granite is a natural stone that absorbs what it comes in contact with. This is good when cooking. You can take something out of the oven and place it right on the stone and it will pull the heat out and absorb it to a point. No need to worry about it ruining the counter top.
However, this is not good when it comes to liquids. Spill some soda on it, and the next thing you know, you have a wonderful brown stain for life. Or how about red Kool Aid? Or OIL!!! This is why you need to seal your granite. It offers protection against the spills and protects your stone from absorbing things it shouldn't.
You can buy sealers online or at your local home improvement store. From what I have read, it's not real hard to apply. Just follow the directions on the product you buy, and don't forget to test it out when you think your done with some water and in an inconspicuous spot. If the water beads up, you sealed it. If the stone absorbs it, it will get darker and not bead up. Re-apply then.
How often you need to re-seal it depends on the kind of sealer you buy. At some point you will need to re-seal it to keep it protected. Some say every few months, some once a year. There are even several online that cost a pretty penny that claim every few years. So do your research! Start now. The earlier the better. This way you can get what you need prior to moving in.
Just so you know, a sealer won't make the stone stain-proof. It just gives you extra time to clean up whatever you do spill on the countertop. Acidic foods are the worst offenders. Don't use any acidic cleaning products, either, such as a vinegar-based window cleaner. Just wipe up a spill—no matter what it is—with a wet sponge right away.
You also can't use harsh chemicals to clean your granite. You need to use special cleaners designed to clean stone. You can pick these up also at your local hardware store, online, or even at your grocery store. Pledge offers one you can use on granite.
Here is a link to an article on cleaning granite:
You will also need to seal any tile grout you have in your home. It too is porous and will absorb water, soap, and the like. You don't want mold. Again, you pick these things at the fore mentioned places.
We are scheduled to close on a Friday (at least at the point of this post). Our plan is to head straight over and seal first thing. Then we will begin the move. We will want the use of our kitchen and bathrooms ASAP. lol