Exterior Projects

The first thing everyone sees is the exterior of your home. Through landscape design, siding, roofing, decorative accents and other curb appeal, upgrade your exteriors with latest ideas from those who work in the home design industry. There are incredible new technologies and color theories that can add a brilliant new look to your home's exterior. The front of your home isn't the only thing that people look at. Backyards and gardens are just the beginning for your outdoor renovation project. You can create the perfect outdoor scene for parties, entertainment, family gatherings and barbecues. Hot tubs and swimming pools aren't the only way to add an exciting outdoor oasis. Whether you want to add an outdoor entertainment area, new landscape or even a greenhouse, your exterior projects can define how your exterior flows with your home and define you as a creator and designer.

One of the biggest DIY remodeling projects is a backyard deck. These wooden structures do not have to be so traditional. You can create decks from wrought iron, wood, and even glass. Decks are perfect for creating a flow from your interior to exterior, placing a hot tub, or a safe passage to an above ground pool. These structures are also amazing for picture perfect views. Decks can overlook lakes, pools, and beautifully landscaped gardens.

Changing an exterior is an intensive project. You have to provide for structural defects and weather damage. You also want to make sure that you are choosing durable furniture, ready to outlast constant sun and rain exposure. The typical outdoor areas can still require the help of an architect to plan and direct the outdoor space that you have to work with. You may also have to change your interiors to create a better flow throughout your home. For example, if you're adding a sunroom or screened porch area, you may want to tear down a wall to make it more open and provide space to install stairs. From green landscapes and hot tubs to flower gardens and luxurious pools, your exterior designs can really improve the value and beauty of your home.

Roofing Cedar Shake

Cedar shake rooftops add a sense of rugged beauty, color, and texture to any home's exterior. Cedar shakes are generally used when people opt for a heavier show line and profile that shakes have when placed for roofing. Using hand-split shakes will provide a looser appearance in comparison to shingles and will also look more rustic. Of course, when picking out any type of roofing material, wood selection is always part of the process. If you plan on using a cedar shake roof or you want to repair your roof, there are some tips that you should keep in mind before you jump into the process. North American shakes are made in 24-inch lengths, although larger shakes can range up to 48 inches. In most cases, you will end up using a standard size for your roof, though this depends on the size of your home.

General Info

Cedar shake provides more texture than asphalt shingles. There is also the additional quality of having a natural, wooden roof. Shakes last around 50 years. For that reason, many homeowners choose to switch their roof style to shakes to avoid the maintenance costs. Shakes are also generally thicker, which provides a more rugged appearance than uniform shingles. Most shakes today use western red cedar, though in the past they were used more often because of the cheap cost when compared to shingles at the time. A cedar shake gives an insulating value of at least twice the amount of an asphalt shingle, which can make heating and cooling costs far cheaper as well.


Installation for cedar shakes can sometimes be very challenging. It's not as easy to install cedar shakes as it is to install shingles. Cedar shakes must be applied to the roof itself. They are not resistant to fire hazards, so this is something to keep in mind during your decision making process. You might want to check with a local building code to see if there are any precautions to having cedar rooftops in your area. You may also find that they are prohibited in areas that are more likely to have fires. Although it's not an easy project, a do-it-yourself homeowner can take care of the project over a period of a few weeks or less with the help of a friend or an experienced crew.

During the first part of installation, you have to determine the steepness of the roof. If you are not comfortable with working on your rooftop, you would be better suited to hire a professional to take care of the job instead. It is a very physical job that requires walking on the roof for hours at a time and using various tools to ensure that no one falls off of the edge during the installation. However, once all of the precautions have been handled, the individual can easily put down four or five shakes at a time when they are working on the roof.

Ultimately, cedar shakes can be a great way to add some character to your roof. It is easily affordable and is a prime choice for those who need to repair their roof unexpectedly. If you want to have a style that's a little different from the rest of the houses in your neighborhood, this would be an ideal option.