« Back to Home

Designing Your Empty Nest

Posted on

Now that you are an empty nester, you may be ready to build your own home. Retirement might be a few years down the road, but now is the time to begin planning a custom home based on the needs you will have over the next twenty or thirty years. Many people begin their dream home journey by discussing countertops and open floor plans, but you should really consider the exterior and roofing of your home first.


You may not think about the exterior of the home first, but you should, to avoid recurring or high maintenance requirements. For example, cedar shingle siding needs to be refinished every five years.

Stone and cultured stone require very little maintenance and are very durable; however, these types of materials are some of the most expensive. Brick is also durable, although the mortar between bricks is susceptible to wear, so it should be checked every ten years.

If you live in a dry climate, stucco may be an economical alternative. It is very durable and rarely needs to be repainted. Vinyl siding is one of the most popular regardless of climate, because of its low cost. The downside is that vinyl siding requires a yearly power-wash to maintain its appearance.


Talk to your custom home contractor about what roofing options he is able to give you. You do not want to have to worry about fixing your roof in your advancing age. Asphalt shingles are the least durable and may need replacing within 15 years. It is better to choose a long lasting, low maintenance roof.

Slate is the most durable roofing material. It can last up to 75 years; however, it is very expensive and requires specially trained workers to install it.

Concrete tile and clay tile roofs can last around 50 years. However, the tiles are also brittle and prone to breaking from being walked on or from heavy hail. If you choose this type of roofing material, you will need to plan on hiring professionals to change and clean the gutters or paint the trim of the house.

Metal roofing requires no maintenance once it is installed. However, you must make sure that you have good insulation; otherwise, you might hear the sound of rain on the roof. The other drawback to this type of roof is the expensive initial cost.  

Most custom homebuilders have you start looking at their customizable floor plans. They may talk about square footage and master bedrooms. But if you know that you want a home with stucco siding and a metal roof, then you can cut out the floor plans and home models that won't fit your criteria. That will put you one step closer to actually living in your optimal empty nest. Contact a company like Clodfelter Bryan & Tammy for more information.