Author Topic: Looking At A House With Stucco  (Read 7745 times)

HairyUpperLip

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Looking At A House With Stucco
« on: March 27, 2015, 09:50:48 AM »
Good day all!

Going to look at a house and hoping to make an offer on it. Checked it out through the windows and seems pretty nice. One of the locks was missing the key, so hopefully going back later today for the full tour.

House -
Built in 1993
1928 sq ft
Asking Price - $184,900
4/2.5

All new exterior and interior paint, new hardwood floors, typical modern kitchen reno, and level backyard. 2 car garage, decent schools.


My only real question/concern is the exterior is made of stucco. Anyone able to give me some quick pointers on what to look for or know about it? Never lived in a stucco home before either, any pro's or con's for heating/cooling costs?

I am doing some Google research right now but figured I may get some more trustworthy responses here as well. Thanks everyone!

My only real

Poorman

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Re: Looking At A House With Stucco
« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2015, 02:00:59 PM »
Well, I'm not sure where you're from, but where I live most houses are made of stucco and they seem to do just fine.  Are you used to brick or something else?
« Last Edit: March 27, 2015, 02:48:34 PM by Poorman »

HairyUpperLip

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Re: Looking At A House With Stucco
« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2015, 02:18:16 PM »
Sorry, located in Georgia.

Yeah, I'm used to brick and siding. Nobody I know personally has ever had a stucco home so was just curious about it.

Poorman

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Re: Looking At A House With Stucco
« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2015, 02:48:16 PM »
Yeah, they don't build with brick out here anymore due to the earthquakes.  Stucco seems to do well in the warm, sunny climates of the southwest.  I don't know of anybody that has problems besides needing the occasional paint job.  It could be a little different in the South with higher humidity and more consistent rainfall.

KCM5

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Re: Looking At A House With Stucco
« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2015, 02:58:12 PM »
Is it stucco or dryvit?

I've heard that poor installation of dryvit (looks like stucco but is a thin application of coating over a foam board) can lead to moisture problems and rot. Not to say I wouldn't buy a house with dryvit, but I'd look at it closely.

Jack

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Re: Looking At A House With Stucco
« Reply #5 on: March 27, 2015, 03:29:05 PM »
Is it stucco or dryvit?

I've heard that poor installation of dryvit (looks like stucco but is a thin application of coating over a foam board) can lead to moisture problems and rot. Not to say I wouldn't buy a house with dryvit, but I'd look at it closely.

This. There's stucco and then there's "fake stucco," and a house built in 1993 (especially if it's not a very expensive one) is likely the latter. Be wary, and pick a good home inspector.

I think 1993 was a bad year for building materials in general:
  • Masonite (hardboard) siding was also common then, and was so bad that the major manufacturer of it lost a class-action suit. My parents' 1993-built home had it, and they've had to replace most of it already despite maintaining it properly.
  • Polybutylene piping was popular, and also the subject of a (billion-dollar) class-action suit.
On the bright side, a 1993 house is too new for asbestos, lead, or aluminum wiring, and too old for sulfide-contaminated Chinese drywall.

Joshua

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Re: Looking At A House With Stucco
« Reply #6 on: March 27, 2015, 08:21:29 PM »
I would advise against it. While it tends to hold up well, if it goes bad it will cost a lot to fix it. Our current house had an issue with the stucco on the front area. It cost $7k to fix it.

Houses are built with brick and vinyl in your area for a reason, it works.

Jack

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Re: Looking At A House With Stucco
« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2015, 08:06:44 AM »
Houses are built with brick and vinyl in your area for a reason, it works.

Fiber-cement siding works too, as does real wood siding (if it's been maintained).

NathanP

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Re: Looking At A House With Stucco
« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2015, 01:40:09 PM »
In coastal regions of Florida nearly all homes are built of concrete blocks covered by stucco. The year-round humidity doesn't seem to be a problem. In my experience, if you keep a stucco home painted it will be maintenance free.

When I purchased my home, the paint was becoming chalky due to the sun/salt/age. After pressure washing and filling any hairline cracks I coated the home in elastomeric paint and never had any further trouble with moisture. I could see neighboring homes where the paint had deteriorated end up with holes in the stucco and areas that "bubbled" out. I believe this was due to rain soaking in behind the stucco causing the material to weaken and fail.

clarkfan1979

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Re: Looking At A House With Stucco
« Reply #9 on: March 31, 2015, 06:46:03 AM »
In coastal regions of Florida nearly all homes are built of concrete blocks covered by stucco. The year-round humidity doesn't seem to be a problem. In my experience, if you keep a stucco home painted it will be maintenance free.

When I purchased my home, the paint was becoming chalky due to the sun/salt/age. After pressure washing and filling any hairline cracks I coated the home in elastomeric paint and never had any further trouble with moisture. I could see neighboring homes where the paint had deteriorated end up with holes in the stucco and areas that "bubbled" out. I believe this was due to rain soaking in behind the stucco causing the material to weaken and fail.

In FL, concrete block homes covered in stucco are considered better construction than wood frame with siding. The stucco will show "ladder cracking" after a few years and is very normal. This is just the house settling. My insurance company made me put some type of water resistant caulk on the cracks. When I painted, I used the high end Sherman Williams paint. Regular price it is $75/gallon. However, Sherman Williams does 2 sales a year in which they do 40% off. They do 4 sales a year in which they offer 30% off.

velocistar237

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Re: Looking At A House With Stucco
« Reply #10 on: March 31, 2015, 07:56:45 AM »

Zoot

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Re: Looking At A House With Stucco
« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2015, 01:35:35 PM »
I just shopped for a home last year in the Atlanta area.  Our real estate agent strongly discouraged us from looking at stucco homes, because he said that resale can be tough; some large companies will not allow purchase of stucco homes when relocating employees, he mentioned, and the perception of stucco in the area is highly influenced by the "fake stucco" phenomenon.

Not sure if any of that is true, but I wanted a house with Hardiplank anyway, so it didn't much matter in our case.  :)  Just mentioning it in case you want to have a similar discussion with your RE agent.

HairyUpperLip

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Re: Looking At A House With Stucco
« Reply #12 on: April 20, 2015, 03:52:23 PM »
Thanks for all of the responses.

We did end up deciding to pass on the stucco house based on the advice posted here.

Jack

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Re: Looking At A House With Stucco
« Reply #13 on: April 20, 2015, 06:50:05 PM »
We did end up deciding to pass on the stucco house based on the advice posted here.

Best of luck in your search!

(Also, move inside the Perimeter. It's better.)

HairyUpperLip

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Re: Looking At A House With Stucco
« Reply #14 on: April 22, 2015, 07:55:10 AM »
We did end up deciding to pass on the stucco house based on the advice posted here.

Best of luck in your search!

(Also, move inside the Perimeter. It's better.)

Thanks man, actually going back and forth with an offer on another home.

I wish we could. I'm just really paranoid about the school systems down there. I don't think I can afford a decent home either.


dragoncar

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Re: Looking At A House With Stucco
« Reply #15 on: April 22, 2015, 08:10:44 AM »
Can't the wrong paint also mess up stucco's ability to breathe?