Not matter how special the interiors of a house are, it’s the façade that determines how welcoming your home appears. Ankita Mamgain helps you choose the right options for beautiful and long lasting exteriors.
Can anyone dispute the importance of first impressions? I personally try not to judge a book by its cover but would be lying if I said it held no significance at all. The same holds true for your home. The exterior often reflects the overall style of the house and the family that lives there, so it sets the pace for the rest of your space. Whether you have stone, wood, brick, steel or vinyl siding; make sure your materials, paint colours and overall design represent what you like and who you are.
The right kind of siding effectively protects your home exterior and contributes a great deal to ‘curb appeal’. The deciding factors here are budget, the climate you live in and the weather conditions. On the island, it’s usually not quite so forgiving, so ideally you want something that’ll endure extreme heat, dust storms and varying levels of humidity. Siding costs also vary by material and installation factors. An expensive siding is useless if it can’t hold up to the elements and requires constant repairs. Here are some of the most common types of home siding that can work for Bahrain:
Vinyl: This is one of the least expensive options and is a popular type for warm, humid climates. It doesn’t flake or rot and stands up to heat and wind. Another plus is the variety of colours it comes in and it can even resemble wood grain or vintage siding. However, when the weather gets windy and cold it might require some maintenance.
Stone and Brick: Although on the pricier side, now homeowners can invest in their look-alike versions at a much lower cost. Stone veneer is made of one layer of masonry tied to the foundation. These options are strong, and they perform well in hot weather because they cool down faster than other types of siding. However, they are also prone to chipping and wearing in rough weather, but with the right care, they will last for many years.
Wooden exteriors have been around for centuries and look great. However they require frequent maintenance and protection from moth infestation. Engineered wood can better handle humid, hot climates than natural wood as it’s treated to withstand the elements and offers a number of additional benefits. It is easy to install, is treated with fungus repellents and insecticides and can survive moisture, mildew, termites, the sun, storms and chemicals.
Fibre Cement: Also known as hardie board siding, it is composed of a mix of wood fibres, cement and sand. It is extremely durable, as well as resistant to heat, termites and rotting. Fibre cement is a good choice for homeowners who live on the coast near the sea because it’s particularly resistant to salt air, humidity and windy conditions. It is offered in a wide variety of colours and styles and requires minimal maintenance.
In addition to its protective value, the home exterior paint or siding can be aesthetically transforming. Here are a few ideas to help in choosing the best colours for the outdoors.
The roof and driveway play a pivotal role in determining your choices and if the façade is primarily stone, using similar hue adds visual harmony. If the fixed colours are intense, like a terracotta-tile roof, a neutral palette for the walls brings balance.
The landscaping is another important factor so select colours that fit in with the surrounding palette. If you have spring blooming trees or a sea of green foundation plantings, choose something that will complement them.
Remember to stay compatible with the other houses in the neighbourhood. You don’t have to imitate the palette or application exactly, but can put your own individual spin on similar colour combinations.
Ask the Experts
Paint is an extremely popular and cost-effective option but making the right selection for the job is never easy. Recent breakthroughs in paint technology have yielded a new generation of eco-friendly exterior paints and stains.
According to R Raghupati, senior manager, sales and marketing at Berger Paints Bahrain, home owners are primarily looking for protection against undulations, algae, heat, fading, cracks, dust, dampness and corrosion. “Our Berger Weathercoat range is a great choice as it offers complete exterior protection,” he says. “This formula is heat resistant, has crack-bridging properties, doesn’t fade easily, is dirt repellent and has anti-carbonisation properties which safeguard the walls against corrosion.” This particular line has been exclusively formulated by Berger Paints for the Middle Eastern climate. The brand’s other products, which also offer a great finish and protection from the elements, are Tuff and Select.