November 6


An in-depth guide to exterior cladding materials: all the information you need to make an informed decision

A guide to exterior cladding – everything you need to know

In today’s world of architecture and home design, exterior cladding plays a vital role in adding both style and functionality to homes. A well-chosen cladding material can not only enhance the appearance of your home but also protect it from natural elements and ensure low maintenance requirements. From traditional timber boards to contemporary metal panels, there is a vast range of cladding options available to suit every homeowner’s taste and preference.

One popular option for exterior cladding is timber. Timber cladding offers a natural and timeless appearance that can suit both traditional and modern houses. It can be installed vertically or horizontally in sections or as individual tiles, allowing homeowners to create a unique and striking feature for their homes. Whether you opt for painted timbers for a more contemporary finish or choose natural timbers that will age beautifully over time, timber cladding is a choice that won’t disappoint.

On the other hand, metal cladding is another popular choice for homeowners seeking a high-value, low-maintenance option. Metal cladding, such as zinc or steel, offers a sleek and modern appearance that can add a sense of sophistication to any building’s exterior. It requires minimal maintenance and won’t need repainting like other materials may over time. With a vast range of colors and finishes available, homeowners can choose a metal cladding option that will perfectly complement their home’s architecture and personal style.

One contrasting option to consider is render. Render cladding offers a smooth and clean appearance, providing a fresh and modern look to your home’s exterior. It is available in a variety of colors and can suit both contemporary and traditional houses. Although it may require more maintenance compared to timber or metal cladding, render offers a high degree of flexibility and can be applied to various building structures and shapes.

In conclusion, exterior cladding is a crucial element in enhancing the appearance and protecting our homes. Whether you prefer the warmth and character of timber, the contemporary and low-maintenance appeal of metal, or the clean and smooth appearance of render, there is a cladding material available to suit your needs and personal style. Take the time to choose the right cladding option for your home, and you’ll be rewarded with an exterior that will continue to look great for years to come.

Do I need planning permission for exterior cladding

When it comes to installing exterior cladding on your property, one question that often comes up is whether or not you need planning permission. The answer to this question can vary depending on a few different factors.

Natural colors and materials

In many cases, if you choose to use natural materials for your exterior cladding, such as timber or stone, you may not need planning permission. Natural materials often blend in well with the surroundings and can enhance the appearance of your home in a high-quality, low-maintenance way.

However, it is always wise to check with your local planning department or a professional architect to ensure you meet any specific requirements or restrictions that may be in place.

Other exterior cladding options

If you decide to go with a more contemporary or non-traditional choice for your exterior cladding, such as metal panels or tiles, you may need planning permission. These types of materials can create a sharp contrast and a modern finish, but they may not be allowed in certain areas or on certain buildings.

Again, it is important to check with your local planning department to understand any regulations that may apply to your specific situation.

Repainting or rendering

If you are considering repainting or rendering your existing exterior cladding, you likely will not need planning permission. This is because these tasks typically fall under the category of regular maintenance rather than a major change in appearance.

However, it is always a good idea to double-check with your local planning department to make sure you aren’t breaking any rules or regulations.

The value of professional advice

Ultimately, the decision of whether or not to seek planning permission for your exterior cladding is up to you. However, it is highly recommended to consult with a professional architect or planning consultant before making any significant changes to the appearance of your property.

A professional can provide valuable guidance on the planning permission process and ensure that you stay within the regulations set forth by your local authority.

Will exterior cladding add value

When considering options for your exterior cladding, one important factor to consider is the potential value it can add to your property. The choice of cladding material can greatly impact the overall appearance and financial worth of your home.

Timber cladding is a popular choice for many homeowners due to its natural and traditional look. It adds a sense of warmth and character to your home. Timber cladding comes in various options such as horizontal or vertical boards, providing flexibility in design. The natural finish of timber can suit both contemporary and traditional styles, making it a versatile option.

Metal cladding, on the other hand, offers a more modern and contemporary finish. With options like steel or aluminum panels, it can give a sense of sophistication and sleekness to your property. Metal cladding is low maintenance, as it does not require repainting like other materials.

Another popular choice is render, which is a mixture of cement, sand, and lime. It provides a smooth and clean finish, giving your property a fresh and contemporary appearance. Render can be colored to suit your style preferences and can be applied in different textures, such as smooth or textured.

Furthermore, natural stone and tiles can be used as exterior cladding materials. This can create a striking and unique feature, adding a sense of luxury and elegance to your home. Stone cladding requires high maintenance, as it needs to be cleaned and sealed regularly to maintain its appearance.

In addition to adding value in terms of aesthetic appeal, exterior cladding can also provide practical benefits. It can improve insulation and energy efficiency, reducing heating and cooling costs. Cladding also provides protection against weather elements, preventing damage to the underlying structure of your property.

The choice of cladding material ultimately depends on your personal preferences, the style of your house, and your budget. Consulting with an architect or a professional in exterior cladding can help you make an informed decision that adds value to your property.

What should I consider when it comes to cladding

  • Materials: When choosing cladding for your home, you need to consider the materials that are available. There are many options to choose from, including timber, metal, tiles, and render. Each material has its own characteristics and benefits, so it’s important to choose one that will suit your style and needs.
  • Style: The style of your home should also be taken into consideration. Traditional buildings, such as barns or houses with a rustic finish, often look best with timber cladding. On the other hand, contemporary architecture often features metal cladding or rendered sections to create a modern and sleek appearance.
  • Maintenance: Another factor to consider is the maintenance required for different types of cladding. Timber cladding, for example, will need regular repainting or staining to keep it looking its best. In contrast, metal cladding offers a high level of durability and requires minimal maintenance.
  • Color: The color of the cladding is also an important consideration. Traditional homes often feature white or natural timber finishes, although other color options are available. Metal cladding can be painted in a wide range of colors, allowing you to create a unique and customized look for your home.
  • Value: The value of the cladding is another important consideration. Some materials, such as timber, can add value to your home, while others may not have the same impact. It’s important to choose a cladding material that will not only enhance the appearance of your home but also provide a good return on investment.
  • Permission: Before installing cladding, you may need to obtain planning permission from your local council. It’s important to check the regulations in your area to ensure that you comply with any requirements.

In conclusion, when it comes to cladding, there are many factors to consider. From the materials and style to the maintenance and color, each decision will impact the overall appearance and value of your home. Take your time to research the options available and choose the cladding that best suits your needs and preferences.

What is the best material for external cladding

When it comes to choosing the best material for external cladding, there are several options to consider, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. The choice of material will depend on factors such as the desired style and appearance, maintenance needs, and budget. Here are some popular materials for external cladding:

Timber Cladding

Timber cladding is a popular choice for many homes, as it offers a natural and traditional look. Timber cladding can be made from different types of wood, such as cedar, pine, or oak. It can be installed vertically or horizontally, depending on the desired style. One advantage of timber cladding is that it can be easily painted or stained to suit the desired color and finish. However, timber cladding may require regular maintenance, such as repainting or staining, to keep it in good condition.

Composite Cladding

Composite Cladding

Composite cladding is another option that is becoming increasingly popular. It is made from a combination of wood and plastic, which gives it the natural look of timber with added durability and low maintenance. Composite cladding is available in a wide range of colors and finishes, allowing for a versatile and customizable look. It is also resistant to rotting, warping, and fading, making it a long-lasting option for external cladding.



Render is a popular choice for contemporary buildings and offers a sleek and modern appearance. It is made from a mixture of cement, sand, and lime, which is applied to the exterior walls to create a smooth and even finish. Render can be painted in a wide range of colors and is a low-maintenance option. However, it may require periodic inspection and repair to prevent cracking or damage.

Metal Cladding

Metal cladding, such as aluminum or steel, is a versatile option that is available in a variety of finishes, including smooth, textured, or perforated. Metal cladding offers a contemporary and stylish look and is suitable for both residential and commercial buildings. It is also durable and requires minimal maintenance. Metal cladding can be installed in panels or as individual boards, allowing for a variety of design options.



Tiles can be used as an external cladding material to create a unique and eye-catching look. They are available in a range of colors, sizes, and materials, such as ceramic, porcelain, or natural stone. Tiles can be installed vertically or horizontally, depending on the desired style. They are durable, waterproof, and low-maintenance, making them a practical choice for external cladding. However, tile cladding may require professional installation and regular inspection to ensure proper sealing and prevent water damage.

Overall, the best material for external cladding will depend on your specific needs and preferences, as well as the style and architecture of your home or building. It is important to consider factors such as maintenance requirements, appearance, durability, and budget when making your decision. Consulting with an architect or cladding specialist can help guide you towards the best material for your project.

Are there any other exterior cladding styles

While there are several popular exterior cladding options available, there are also many other styles to choose from that can offer different benefits and suit different architectural designs.


One option is to use tiles for your exterior cladding. Tiles can offer a unique aesthetic and come in a variety of colors and finishes. They are a great choice for contemporary style architecture and can add visual interest to your home.


Metal cladding is another option to consider. Metal offers a modern and industrial look, especially when used in contrasting colors. It requires low maintenance and offers durability and value. Metal cladding can be used for both commercial buildings and residential homes.


Timber cladding is a popular choice for many homes and buildings. It offers a natural appearance and can be painted or left in its natural finish. Timber cladding is versatile and suits both traditional and modern architecture. It can be installed vertically or horizontally, depending on the desired look.


Render is another exterior cladding option that gives a smooth and clean finish. It is low maintenance and provides a contemporary appearance. Render can be applied in different colors and textures to suit the style of your home or building.

Other materials

There are also other materials available for exterior cladding, such as Vastern timber and fiber cement boards. Vastern timber offers a unique and high-quality finish, while fiber cement boards provide durability and resistance to fire and pests.

In conclusion, when choosing exterior cladding, there are various options to consider. Each style has its own benefits and can greatly enhance the appearance and value of your home or building. Whether you prefer a contemporary or traditional look, there is a cladding style that will suit your needs.

Do I need professional installation for exterior cladding

When it comes to installing exterior cladding, the question of whether or not to hire a professional often arises. While some homeowners may choose to take on the task themselves, there are several factors to consider before making a decision.

Repainting and maintenance

One of the main advantages of exterior cladding is that it requires minimal maintenance compared to other materials such as timber or render. However, depending on the type of cladding chosen, repainting may be necessary over time to maintain its appearance.

When it comes to repainting, a professional installation can ensure that the task is carried out correctly. A professional will have the necessary skills and equipment to achieve a seamless finish, ensuring that the cladding looks great and performs well for years to come.

Complex installations

Some types of exterior cladding, such as metal panels or large format tiles, may require a more complex installation process. In these cases, it is often recommended to hire a professional who has experience in handling these materials.

For example, installing metal panels or large format tiles may involve special tools and techniques that only professionals possess. They will also have the knowledge to ensure that the cladding is installed correctly and safely, reducing the risk of any issues in the future.

Obtaining necessary permissions

In some cases, obtaining permission from local authorities may be necessary before installing exterior cladding. This process can be more easily navigated by a professional, who will typically be familiar with the requirements and procedures.

Additionally, a professional installation may also help in obtaining any necessary permits, ensuring that the cladding is installed in compliance with local regulations and building codes.

Choosing the right cladding

Choosing the right cladding

Ultimately, the choice of whether to hire a professional for exterior cladding installation will depend on the homeowner’s confidence in their own skills and the complexity of the project.

For traditional options such as timber boards or white-painted render, installation may be relatively straightforward and can be accomplished by a confident DIY enthusiast. On the other hand, contemporary materials like metal or large format tiles may benefit from professional installation.

It is also worth considering the architectural style of your home. A professional installation can help ensure that the cladding complements the overall design and appearance of the building, whether it be to create a sense of contrast or to blend seamlessly with the existing features.

In conclusion, while it is possible to install exterior cladding yourself, hiring a professional offers numerous advantages such as a high-quality finish, reduced maintenance, and assistance with complex installations and permits. It is important to weigh these factors against your own skills and the requirements of your project before making a decision.


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