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Exterior wall cladding is an important element to consider when building or renovating your home. Not only does it help your home resist the elements and stand the test of time, but it also impacts the overall aesthetic, and improves acoustics and insulation quality.

When it’s time to complete your colour selections, cladding your home’s exterior will be one of the choices you’ll need to make. It’s a good idea to learn a little more about the options available first. Here we share all of the most popular cladding materials and give you tips on how to choose the right option for you and your home.

Cladding

Exterior cladding is a popular option for modern Australian homes because it mimics the look of weatherboard but is designed with longevity in mind. Unlike weatherboard, cladding is made from a combination of cement and wood fibres, making it more resistant to the elements. It’s also termite proof and resistant to moisture, so it’s hardier when exposed to the elements. Because it’s not made solely from timber, external cladding also provides a higher level of fire safety. Cladding comes in a range of styles and colours, and doesn’t require frequent repainting, so the ongoing maintenance is low. Due to cladding being made from a combination of materials, another added benefit is that it won’t warp or swell as the weather conditions change, so being faced with replacing it every few years isn’t likely. Many of our homes feature cladding from James Hardie to perfect their façade style, including Linea Weatherboard, the Scyon range, and Axon vertical cladding for a different look and feel.

Things to Consider

Because of the durability of external cladding, the manufacturing and installation costs are higher, meaning your façade costs may be higher than using traditional weatherboards or rendered brick for your home. This is something to consider when taking in to account your build budget for your home – although it’s a nice to have item, it can increase the overall cost of your build. It’s a good idea to speak to your builder when you’re making your colour selections to weigh up whether this is the right product for your new home.

Exposed Brick

Brick is one of the most robust building materials on the market. As a choice of home exterior, exposed brick can effectively protect the integrity of your home from extreme weather conditions such as fire and strong winds. A brick exterior is also very simple to maintain, requiring only a quick wash down with a hose.

Brick is also a great option if you’re mindful of your impact on our planet and it is one of the most sustainable and abundant building materials available. To take it one step further, you can even upcycle bricks from previous projects or structures, Which is not only great for the environment, but also for saving money on materials.

Things to consider:

If you’re after a particular finish, then you may need to paint your exterior which can be a slightly arduous task. You may also need to consider additional insulation for your home if you do settle on a brick exterior, as alone they may not be sufficient.

Timber

Timber is a classic and sometimes rustic cladding option that can add a sense of warmth and timeliness to your home. Timber is a hardy building material that can withstand extreme pressure from the elements and will last for decades to come. In addition to its durability, it’s also an excellent cladding option due to its insulation properties. Adding Timber cladding to your home’s exterior will not only add visual appeal but will also help reduce your energy consumption and costs bills.

Things to consider:

When buying timber, it’s important to look for materials that are FSC certified. Timber that doesn’t have this certification is likely to have been sourced illegally and unsustainably. Not only is this an ethical issue, but timber sourced this way has a high probability of containing toxic volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

Although timber is a durable material, it can experience dimensional instability as it can expand and contract in different weather conditions.

Rendered Brick

Render is a unique cladding solution due to the fact that it isn’t a dry material that is fixed to the exterior of the home with screws or other fittings. Instead, it involves a liquid mixture being spread and smoothed onto the exposed brick exterior and then left to dry and solidify. Render is an excellent protective option and can also be a very versatile building material. It can be sourced in many different colours and textures to meet your design preferences and needs. Render provides a modern aesthetic, which makes it a popular option for new builds.

Things to consider:

Render can be a rather costly solution compared to standard brick or timber cladding. The building material itself can be quite expensive, and it requires additional labour to apply. Render may also need to be maintained periodically when exposed to different natural elements.

Cultured Stone

Cultured stone is a man-made alternative to natural stone cladding. It’s made by pouring a thin layer of concrete into various moulds to give it a textured stone appearance.

Cultured stone can be an excellent alternative to natural stone as it’s lightweight, easy to install, versatile and inexpensive. Cultured stone comes in a wide variety of colours and patterns, so you’re sure to find the perfect the perfect look for your home’s exterior.

Things to consider:

While it is an affordable and aesthetically pleasing option, it should be noted that cultured stone can fade over time when exposed to extreme sun exposure. This is simply due to the paints it is tinted with. If you’re planning on cladding areas of your home that won’t be overly exposed to the harsh elements, then it could be an excellent option for you.

If you’re looking to build a home with Hotondo Homes, know that you can choose from the most popular, tried and tested cladding solutions. Speak with us today about our options for exposed brick, rendered brick, timber, James Hardie and cultured stone exteriors, plus we also specialise in natural stone accents for an added sense of luxury and style.

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