Choosing Exterior Siding: Stucco Pros and Cons

Eddie Shekari
July 26, 2019

When it comes to home improvement, you can’t forget about your home’s walls and exterior. Whether you are looking to revamp your house to a new style, or are trying to increase your home’s value and curb appeal in order to sell, knowing your options is the first step you take. When it comes to the different types of siding you can give the exterior of your home, stucco comes with both pros and cons. But before you learn stucco pros and cons, it’s important to know what exactly it is and how it can be used.

what is stucco

What is Stucco?

Stucco is a type of plaster that is able to transform a plain, flat wall to a new level by giving it more dimension with a layer of texture. Stucco can be applied to either the exterior walls or interior of a home. Although more commonly found on the exterior (known as stucco siding), interior stucco can really bring a home to life. When done properly, stucco can make a home feel more personalized. Stucco is found in a lot of traditional style homes and is a classic texture to have. This technique is able to create interesting textures that can add depth to a room, as the patternless stucco design mimics the natural world. A wall that has been stuccoed will have a painterly quality to it that pairs particularly nicely with wood furniture and framed wall art for an overall natural space to inhabit.

Learn More: Types of Exterior Paint Finishes

applying stucco

How Stucco is Applied

There are two main types of stucco: synthetic and traditional. Traditional stucco is made with cement, sand, lime, and water and coated over a metal lathe base or mesh. It is then given a finish coat of acrylic-polymer to protect it. Synthetic stucco is almost identical to traditional appearance-wise, but it is constructed in layers and will be softer to the touch because of its styrofoam core as opposed to metal base. For the sake of cutting down on confusion, we will be focusing on traditional stucco in this blog.

Stucco itself is made out of inexpensive and basic materials that anyone can easily find. However, the application is labor intensive. There are many steps to applying a stucco finish to wood or masonry, but the results are worth it. Depending on your base (wood or concrete), the process may take longer. If you are applying your finish to concrete, then you can do with a simple scratch coat as a base layer. However, if you are applying stucco to wood, you will need both a scratch coat and a brown coat. A brown coat ensures a smooth surface before you can coat stucco.

Stucco Pros

While there are both pros and cons to choosing stucco, there are plenty of pros that other types of siding do not offer. The important thing is to keep in mind what you value and want for your home in particular. Here are some of the pros for adding stucco to your home:

  • Fire resistance
  • Resists rot, mildew, and mold
  • Longevity- can last over 50 years
  • Mimics the appearance of clay
  • Adds unique texture
  • Insect resistant

Stucco Cons

There are certain downsides to owning a home with stucco siding that may make you reconsider your decision. It is best to know both sides so that you can make the right decision for your home. Here are some of the cons of stucco to consider:

  • Porous and can become saturated with water over time
  • Takes longer to repaint because the old paint has to be sandblasted off
  • Holds onto debris and needs to be gently cleaned with a pressure washer 
  • Takes longer to apply due to layering
  • Does not do well in rainy climates

Professional Stucco Services

Once you have considered these stucco pros and cons and whether it is right for your home, hiring stucco contractors to do the labor-intensive work for you is the best way to go. Hiring professionals is important with this type of work since it requires attention to detail, especially if you need it done in a timely manner. Another great thing about hiring professionals for this kind of job is that you will not have to provide your own siding materials. Not having to worry about gathering all the materials needed for a job can be a great relief, especially if you do not have experience with this type of work. If you are looking for experienced local professionals to get the job done right, then the Pro Painters are a good fit for you. Not only can the pros take care of the initial job for you, but they can powerwash your exterior when it needs it. Pro Painters guarantees satisfaction and even offers free estimates, so you can know for sure if you want to proceed with your next home improvement project.


Free Estimate

Eddie Shekari

Eddie founded Pro Painters in 1995 to meet the growing need for high-quality residential and commercial painting needs in Houston. In nearly 20 years, Pro Painters has exponentially grown our client base, serving residents across the greater Houston area. Our core principles have helped us achieve the highest standard of workmanship and customer satisfaction. Our years of experience have allowed us to become an extension to our customers as the all-in-one solution for home makeovers.