It’s one of the top four features consumers have on their wish lists for their next home: a low-maintenance exterior. Lots of people naturally think of vinyl siding when they hear the term low-maintenance exterior. That’s great, but there’s more than one way to skin this horse. Here are some other great ideas that will reduce the backbreaking work of caring for your home’s exterior—and may even make your home safer.
Siding: Though vinyl siding has gained a strong foothold in this arena because it is less expensive. It will also last a long time. It will crack chip and fade over time. Every year that goes by the siding will show more fading. Seamless steel, fiber cement brick, and stone are also great choices. Seamless Steel is going to hold its new look for a very long time. It is very durable for our Wisconsin weather. Seamless Steel costs a little more but worth every penny. Fiber cement looks like wood but resists insects. It holds its paint very well. It will need to be painted in the future but by then you may want to change colors. It needs to be installed over a rain screen to prevent moisture issues. It is a very prestigious siding. Which you will pay for. Stone and brick are expensive but will last for generations.
Roofs: For lower-maintenance home-toppers, metal is becoming increasingly popular and can last for up to five decades. Metal roofing is fire resistant, so it not only reduces maintenance but increases your safety. There are lots of myths surrounding metal roofs. We debunk them here. Remember that tile and slate are beautiful, durable and low-maintenance roofing materials, too.
Windows: Oh, the dreaded windows! People are commonly reluctant to sink money into moving to lower-maintenance windows. One, windows are expensive but they will quickly pay for themselves with energy savings if you buy for efficiency triple panel glass can double energy efficiency. Two, people who favor the classic warmth of wood frames often can’t bring themselves to even think about switching to lower-maintenance materials like fiberglass or vinyl. But it’s now possible to get durable vinyl windows with real wood interiors. Another thing to consider with windows is tilt-outs, which make for easier cleaning.
Decks: Decks are increasingly popular additions for homes, but depending on the materials from which yours is made, it can either help or hurt your home’s appeal. Wood decks need a lot of maintenance, and if you own one, you know that the perennial scraping, sanding, and painting are a huge pain in the neck (literally). That’s why composite, capped composite, and PVC decks are a smart choice for low-maintenance decking material. Just think: zero deck maintenance for the rest of your life!