When considering gables, trim, windows, doors and other elements of a house, the essential ingredient from which all variations and expressions flow is the basic siding material used for the majority of your home’s exterior surfaces, “field.” It often makes sense to celebrate the horizontal lines of a Ranch home with clapboards that have heavy shadow lines so that the counterpoints of windows, doors, trim, and, perhaps, gable siding, seem all the more activated and zesty. In homes that have horizontal and vertical elements, a neutral siding material (smaller, narrower exposure clapboards of tight shingle coursing) can allow the larger elements of the home to “pop” using reinforcing trim and the “banding” or “gridding” described earlier.
Though you will spend a lot of time finding the right windows and doors to go with your exterior remodel, the frames that those items go into are much more important. A lot of the costs associated with heating and cooling a home come from conditioned air that leaks out of the home and into the world. Keeping the doors and windows shut will reduce that leakage, but the frames still allow some air to go through. During the exterior remodel, check to make sure that the windows and doors are framed correctly and that you cannot see daylight between the frame and the window or door. Tight seals will keep the air that you want inside your home and keep the air that you are avoiding on the outside.
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