Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Exterior Finishes for Your Home: Part 2

In Part 1 of our exterior finishes series, we talked about curb appeal and what to plan for when deciding on exterior cladding. In this post we’ll cover more curb appeal tips and exterior options.

Curb Appeal Tips

Are you not sure where to start when you are looking to spruce up the outside of your home? Perhaps before you dive into a full exterior finish remodel, these few tips will ignite your design process for the outside of your home.

  1. Repaint the front door, the trim, and shutters. Reviving these pieces of the house will make the house look fresh and welcoming. It’ll also catch the eye of a potential buyer if you home is on the market.

  1. Install new house numbers. Over time, the numbers on the front of your house can fade or begin to peel and generally look unkempt. Replace the numbers with new ones, and be sure the finish matches your exterior lights.

  1. Add window flower boxes. Are you looking for a little color that can be changed with the seasons? Installing window boxes will add texture, natural beauty, and color. If you live within a community with exterior regulations, be sure to check with the board of directors before adding this new feature.

The Stone Look

EIFS - Exterior Insulation and Finish Systems
Pros: EIFS are one of the most durable cladding on the market. It also holds some of the best energy efficient and energy savings because of the extra r-value it adds onto the structure. It has a great curb appeal. It comes in many different textures and colors, making designability extremely easy. And with correct installation, EIFS has excellent water resistance.

Cons: In the early stages of these systems, rain resistance was an issue. They used a face-sealed approach which made for no provision for drainage of water. Insurance companies include full exclusions for EIFS and other ruled-out provisions to their liability insurance policies because of too many problems with poor installation.

Cost: Depending on where you live and the complexity of the job, EIFS range from $8 per square foot to $30 per square foot. The price skyrockets if there is damage done from poor installation resulting in moisture damage.

Durability: EIFS are very durable in all types of climates. This flexible material resists cracks from expanding or contracting from rising and falling temperatures. It’s also resistant to dirt, mildew, and mold. The systems special formula includes a 100% acrylic binder, which keeps the color from fading, even if it gets scratched, the damaged area will still have the same pigment as the rest of the wall.

Maintenance: Taking care of EIFS is pretty low. The mold and dirt resistant finish makes cleaning a breeze. Also, periodic checks of the flashing and sealing is the best defense against moisture getting in. The 100% acrylic binder eliminates the need for painting. It is also resistant to fading, chalking, and yellowing.

Pros: Natural stone is an extremely durable material that provides a traditional and attractive look to any exterior. Quarried rock is found in a wide variety of colors, it will complement any style of home and can be cut to fit any needed size. Because it is a natural material, stone is easy to maintain and withstands the weathering of any climate.

Cons: Stone is much heavier than other exterior options. This needs to be taken into account during the installation. The supporting walls will need to be reinforced to be able to support the weight. Because of it’s weight, it’s difficult and costly to have it delivered to the site. The cost for stone is more expensive for the previously mentioned reasons as well as it being a higher end look.

Cost: It’s the most expensive exteriors at $12-30 per square foot.

Durability: Quarried from natural rock, stone is one of the most durable exteriors available. Natural stone will last for the life of the home, ages gracefully and can withstand many climates.

Maintenance: A simple hosing once or twice a year removes dust and dirt. Mortar is required to hold the stones in place and after a few years, occasional touch ups may be necessary.

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