LESLIE: Our next call is from Carla in Nebraska who’s looking for a brick recommendation.
Carla, what’s your renovation?
CARLA: Well, we are looking at replacing some siding on a house. We currently have siding now so we were looking at bricking the house. Our contractor happened to mention Novabrik. I’m just wondering the difference between – well, I know what the difference is; it’s a siding brick versus masonry brick. And I was just wondering – they mentioned that it was the ease of application that was good as far as cost-wise for them but I’m just wondering about the durability and what kind of a product that is; if you’ve heard any good, bad comments about the Novabrik.
LESLIE: Well, I know that Novabrik works in the same way as a shingle would. It’s sort of shaped in a way that they stack and adhere to each other and interlock. So it’s not the same system as a regular brick with mortar.
TOM: It’s really more of a siding kind of a brick.
LESLIE: Exactly. I mean, to me, there’s not really much difference between a Novabrik product and, say, a hardy plank, which is a cement siding product that’s incredibly durable. So I think it’s probably a fine product but I think it’s pretty much not much difference between that and any kind of a Hardiplank product. Have you seen hardy plank?
CARLA: I’m not quite sure.
TOM: Well, take a look at it. You know, the James Hardie Company has been around for many, many years. Now that’s a completely maintenance-free siding product that’s made out of a concrete mix and that’s pretty much what Novabrik is except Novabrik looks more like brick.
CARLA: Right, right. And we like the brick look.
LESLIE: In looking at Novabrik’s website, they have a 50-year limited warranty, so that’s something good to know when you’re thinking about the product as well.
CARLA: OK. OK. Is it becoming a popular product or is that just kind of a new thing that people are maybe just starting to look at?
TOM: Well you know, I don’t think they’re doing a lot of promotion; I’ll tell you that. Because I hardly ever see any information about Novabrik out there; although I am somewhat familiar with it. But it does seem like it’s a product that makes a lot of sense and would be, basically, just another of the new, low/no-maintenance – low-to-no-maintenance siding products that are out there.
LESLIE: Yeah, and the colorant is actually put into it during the fabrication process, so it’s not going to paint, it’s not going to fade or peel. So that’s another thing to think about.
CARLA: Right. And there were quite a few different colors that we – color choices that we could choose from but we weren’t really familiar with it, so we were just kind of wondering the durability of it versus the actual masonry brick. But it sounds like it’s …
TOM: Well, I think it’s pretty durable stuff. It’s not going to be as durable as a solid brick wall.
LESLIE: But then with brick you have to deal with the mortar and the mortar needs maintenance.
CARLA: Yeah, yeah. And sometimes that cracks and …
LESLIE: Six of one, half a dozen of the other.
CARLA: Yeah, that’s true. OK, great. I think that answers everything I needed to know.
TOM: Alright, Carla. Thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT.