Basics About Exterior Home Trim
When it comes to evaluating homes, roofing and siding often get all the attention. As important as they are, savvy homeowners and real estate agents alike will tell you there is more to a home than just its most obvious features.
One of these overlooked aspects is the home’s exterior trim. For all the attention that roofing and siding get, trim plays a major role in creating a fully realized home design, whether people recognize it consciously or not.
The biggest problem with something so important being so overlooked is the lack of education on the subject. So, in this guide, we’ll go over some of the basic questions many homeowners have about exterior trim, and provide the best answers possible so you can have all the knowledge at your disposal to make smarter decisions and improve your home.
So, What Is It Exactly?
Exterior trim can take a few different forms, but in its most basic definition, it is the accentuating borders, typically the molding or millwork, of each exterior home component — the artistic “frames” of a home’s roof, walls, windows, and doors. Here are some examples of where trim is installed on a home:
The purpose of trim is primarily for style and aesthetics. The trim directs attention and defines emphasis; it takes the basics of a building’s components and puts them on display. Modern architecture has progressed to the point where a home without trim of any kind simply wouldn’t look finished or complete.
The average person can walk by a home with good trim and a home with bad trim and immediately discern that one looks worse than the other, although the reason behind it may not be obvious.
Does It Matter Which I Pick?
For both curb appeal and total home value, the type of trim you decide to implement absolutely matters.
Like we said before, good and bad trim are easy to spot. Good trim plays to a home’s strengths; be it modern, Victorian, colonial, or a bungalow, there is a supplementary trim for any kind of home. Bad trim is an outline. It simply sits without purpose around windows, doors, and soffits without adding value to the home.
The first step in picking the right trim is identifying what kind of trim your home needs. For some homeowners, this may be an obvious pick. If you’ve already put a lot of thought and care into your home’s exterior, you likely have an idea of what kind of trim would best accent the current style of home.
However, for other homeowners, the choice may not be so obvious. For those with fairly traditional homes who haven’t put much renovation work into their exterior, home trim can become an afterthought. In these situations, it is often best to stay basic. Simple trim is not necessarily boring or ineffective trim. In fact, a simple, sharp, and clean look may do the best job at creating a subtle but impactful exterior makeover.
There is no one-size-fits-all-homes trim, but there are a wide variety of trim styles and systems for all the various homes out there. If you’re worried that a trim installation involves a lot of home design experience, don’t be — there’s a trim out there for every home, and it only takes an experienced professional to identify what would work best for your house.
How Do I Know If I Need New Trim?
When people ask how to choose exterior home trim, they inevitably need to know whether or not they even need the new trim in the first place.
Recognizing when your home is in need of renovations or repairs is one of the best traits a homeowner can have. In general, the rules for trim are the same for other exterior home components like roofing and siding.
You can tell your exterior trim needs a makeover if you notice any of the following signs:
- Trim Discoloration
- Mold Growth
- Damage or Distortion
Grime and dirt buildup are especially common on trim board, soffits, and corners of the exterior, which generally are the least inspected spots of the house.
The discoloration can sometimes be remedied by the homeowner themselves if they adhere to proper trim cleaning practices. In some cases, the buildup is light enough that a quick scrub is all the trim needs to look good as new.
Mold and general damage are more serious issues that are tougher to handle on your own. Mold can often be a sign of larger moisture issues in the home’s exterior, and damage will likely require a replacement.
For these issues, it is recommended to schedule a home exterior inspection with a licensed contractor to give you a better vision of what your home needs and what the true scope of work is.
Interested In Trim? Let’s Talk!
Exterior home trim is one of our many areas of expertise. Contact us today to discuss how we can revamp your home and give it that gorgeous lift it deserves.