Writing recently in the Boston Globe, correspondent Jennifer Fenn Lefferts looked at some of the hottest trends in home design and renovation. Interviewing architects and designers, Lefferts came up with a “top ten” list of home improvements that appeal to a wide range of homeowners.
One of the most popular of the top ten preferences is for low-maintenance exteriors. Lefferts found that, when it comes to items like windows, siding, and decking, homeowners are turning to low-maintenance materials that will free up their after they are installed.
“The initial expense to install will offset the future cost to paint and repair,” architect David Sharff told Lefferts. Spending money on a paint job only to have to redo it in a few years can be exasperating and expensive, he said. “There is a ‘do it and have it be done’ mentality” that is driving homeowners to choose more durable, low-maintenance vinyl or fiber cement siding.
Sharff used decks as an example. The cost per lineal foot for PVC or composite decking is in the range of $3.50 to $4.99 per lineal foot, he said, while a high-maintenance wood deck material such as fir, cedar, or mahogany could be less expensive, at $1.50 to $3 per lineal foot. Yet homeowners in droves are choosing composite decking materials because they know they will spend much less time and money maintaining their new outdoor living space.
Similar savings in time can be found in siding and windows that do not need to be scraped and painted every few years. In the case of siding, real estate and construction experts agree that a home with a wood exterior should be painted at least every seven years. If you spend $5,000 to paint a modest size home, that adds up to $20,000 if you stay in your home for 21 years. And that does not take into account the time and hassle involved in the scraping and painting process, or the prospect of seeing your wood siding fade, chip and peel in between painting projects.
The good news is that advances in materials technology have created a wide range of high performance materials for your home’s exterior. Everything from insulated vinyl siding and rugged fiber cement siding, to replacement windows that will last as long as you live in your home. All with virtually no maintenance required.
Interested in discovering how low-maintenance materials can make your home look great without saddling you with hours of work down the road? Call Brax Roofing at 301-469-4880 for ideas on installing new siding, replacement windows or decking that deliver superior performance while requiring less maintenance.