The exterior of a building can be clad in a multitude of finishes, of which stucco or plaster, has been a choice for many owners, either in whole or part.

Plaster provides a smooth finish, that is reflective of many Modern style homes, while stucco is typically the choice for a Contemporary style home. We have designed both, in Denver, Pacific Palisades, Kailua-Kona, Austin and many other cities with varied architectural designs, climatic conditions and budget considerations.

Plaster is about three times as expensive as stucco, because of additional labor required and material costs as well. Stucco therefore becomes more cost effective and can also come ‘close’ to a plaster finish, depending on the proportion/type of sand that is specified into the mix.

Another valuable ingredient to either a plaster or stucco mix, is an option for color. There are many different manufacturers that offer an array of different color add mixtures, that can compliment the architectural design and other exterior finish materials of the building.

These color packets are typically designed as a 1-4 bag additive to the cement mix. The more packets added, the more ‘rich’ or prominent, the color of the building becomes.

Since the color is now added to the final coat of the plaster or stucco finish, there is no need to paint the building; it already has the color selected for the end result design, a paintless building.

Thus, literally tens of thousands of dollars is saved from having to paint the exterior walls of a building, not only initially but virtually forever! Additional extraneous cost savings include: no painters scaffolding needed during construction, no disruption of landscape that needs to be replaced from ladders and men working to repaint the building every five years or so and no payment for price increases to perform painting maintenance work, for decades to come.
The subject matter of this article was actually a small part of a ‘whole-house’ analysis performed by us, as Consultants to client’s whom were in the design phase with their architects and requested our On-Call Consulting work.

The scope of this work included a thorough analysis of their architectural plans, before submittal to the building department, in terms of suggested cost savings. In this case, the client saved $50,000-$100,000 that was slated to be paid for, during construction.

For more information on how our Consulting Services can benefit you and your project, please tell us about your needs and let us know what type of project you are working on: Online Consulting

Design, Construction and Consulting Services are available for Light Commercial and Residential Projects, throughout the U.S.


Best Regards Always!

Barry R. Shaw, AIA, GC
BSA Inc Design & Construction
Architects & General Contractors

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