Here in Houston the only thing cheaper than granite is laminate.
As a Master Plumber with 30+ years experience, granite is the way to go. I've had granite tops in my own home and rentals for at least 15-20 years and have yet to have a single problem. No breaks, no staining etc. I even started putting it in my rent houses as the tenants can't/don't tear them up.
I am very disciplined in sealing them once a year.
I had a Corian top and sink in one house. It stained bad and the PO set a hot pan on it and melted it.
Laminate stains and breaks easily. Back when the one piece rolled back splash got popular I replace more than one Formica top due to it getting broken.