LESLIE: Cassie in Texas, you’ve got The Money Pit. What can we do for you today?
CASSIE: Yes. I’ve got a question about stucco. I was wondering if the synthetic stucco performs as well as the regular stucco in North Texas.
TOM: No. The synthetic – the stucco has had years and years and years of problems associated with it and I just don’t like it. I wouldn’t put it on my house. I think that there’s nothing better than real stucco but the foam stucco that’s out there – the Exterior Insulated Foam Siding; the EIFS systems – if you search that online, you’re going to find lots and lots of complaints and lawsuits and class-action lawsuits associated with the foam stucco. So I would stay away from it.
CASSIE: OK. What kind of problems are you finding out? Is it falling off or …?
TOM: Mostly moisture-related, where the moisture gets through it and can’t drain out of it.
TOM: There’s been several iterations of it over the years to make it more water-resistant but most of the problems stem from water just getting behind it. It was a very difficult product to install and even if you did follow the manufacturers’ guidelines, I suspect that the skill set was just not out there. And the contractors that were putting it together – you know, one little mistake really cost them.
CASSIE: OK. And then how does brick compare to stucco? The regular, original stucco.
TOM: I think they’re both extremely durable materials. They can last a lifetime. It all comes down to installation. If it’s done correct …
CASSIE: And cost?
TOM: And cost. Yeah, I suspect brick would probably be more expensive than stucco but probably not terribly so more.
LESLIE: Well, when you’re dealing with an aesthetic choice, brick is something that you pick. It stays that color forever and ever and ever. Some people paint it but it’s really once you paint brick, you can never go back. And with stucco, at least you have the opportunity to, if you like to have a home that’s of a certain color, you’re able to do so.
CASSIE: Mm-hmm. OK. Well, that’s helpful. Thank you, guys. I appreciate it.