If you’ve ever watched a film noir and thought, “I want to live in that kind of house!” then a brick home might be for you. Brick is an exceptionally sturdy building material, making homes made from it strong enough to withstand storms and keep the outside noise down.
Sometimes brick homes are considered old-fashioned or dull. Still, there are ways to avoid that fate by sprucing up the home exteriors so that it doesn’t detract from its inherent charm. Considering buying a brick house? Here are some pros and cons to help you decide if it’s right for you.
A Brick Home Certainly Has Its Share Of Advantages
Deciding to purchase a brick house is not for the faint of heart. It’s serious business, and you don’t want to regret your decision down the road. While brick houses certainly have their share of advantages, there are also some drawbacks to consider. But first, let’s look at the advantages of brick homes.
Brick Homes Are Incredibly Durable
A brick home is a good option for the person who likes to buy things once and enjoy them forever, or at least for as long as they live there. Brick is one of the strongest materials used in construction today, and it’s also resistant to rotting, rusting, mold growth, and insect infestations such as carpenter ants.
Because bricks aren’t prone to warping or changing shape over time, they maintain an effective seal against the elements year after year—and that means durability. If you want your home standing for hundreds of years, then this is the material for you.
Brick Homes Are Fire Resistant
One of the most beneficial properties of brick materials is that they are fire resistant. This means that if you live in a brick building and a fire breaks out nearby, there’s a good chance that the flames won’t spread to your home.
Of course, it’s essential to understand what fire resistance really means when talking about housing materials. For one thing, no house is 100% fireproof; brick walls are built with wooden supports and other flammable materials.
Additionally, while brick may prevent heat from escaping into your home during colder seasons (which we’ll get into later), this can also mean that the heat from an exterior fire is more likely to be trapped inside your walls during hotter parts of the year.
Brick Houses Are Resistant To Weather Damage
This is a good thing for obvious reasons. If you live in a brick home, hail, torrential rain, and wind will not be a problem for you. Bricks are made from clay, which has been baked to harden into the small and valuable building blocks we know as bricks. When assembled correctly under the supervision of experts, these bricks cannot be easily destroyed by the elements.
Brick houses have been known to survive floods, hurricanes, and tornadoes that have destroyed many other types of homes. This is an important reason one should consider buying a brick house if they would like a home that remains in good condition over time.
Brick Homes Are Quiet
Simple as it may sound, brick is an excellent sound insulator. While homes constructed of other materials need more reinforcement to keep out the clamor of everyday life, they don’t have this structural advantage. Brick also absorbs more sound than wood or vinyl siding, providing a quieter environment for you and your family.
While you’ll still hear normal human sounds (like “Mom! Where are my shoes?”), you won’t be as affected by things like traffic noise or noisy neighbors. You can also expect less noise from within the household—in most cases, your kids can run around in their rooms without disturbing anyone else in the house. When you combine all these factors, you get an overall reduction in noise that makes brick-constructed homes less stressful to live in—and who doesn’t want that?
Brick Helps Stabilize Home Temperatures
Brick exteriors might not look like they do much. Still, it turns out that they contribute to the home’s ability to maintain a more stable internal temperature. Brick absorbs heat from the sun during warm months and releases it on cool evenings, helping keep temperatures inside your home consistent on both ends of the spectrum. It can help keep you cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter.
It’s worth noting that this effect is more pronounced in hotter climates than cooler ones, so if you live in an area where temperature changes are less extreme seasonally, then this may not be a noticeable benefit for you.
Brick Homes Are Easy To Maintain
Brick is a low maintenance building material in general. It doesn’t really need any special treatment; you can use mild detergent and a hose to get rid of the occasional mold and mildew that can build up on brick surfaces. Also, cleaning bricks is pretty easy, so if you’re handy with the garden hose, you’ll have no problem keeping your brick home clean!
Brick Homes Tend To Be Worth More
You know how the saying goes: buy low, sell high. If you’re thinking of buying a brick house, that goal is more achievable than you might have thought. Brick homes are often more expensive to build from scratch or repair, but they also tend to hold their value better over time than wood-frame homes.
Homeowners and potential buyers alike keep this in mind when making financial decisions about their property and may be willing to pay a premium for brick houses. So if you’re looking for a long-term investment opportunity that will accrue in value over time, buying a brick home may be worth your while.
A Brick House May Be An Energy-Efficient Choice
Another plus is that bricks are natural materials that won’t produce emissions like some synthetic materials. As such, it may be an energy-efficient choice for homeowners who want to reduce their carbon footprint by choosing eco-friendly and low maintenance building materials.
Brick houses could also mean lower energy bills due to their ability to provide excellent insulation from hot and cold temperatures outside the home. In this way, bricks can help with climate control inside the house, reducing your need for artificial heating or cooling.
Brick Is A Versatile Building Material
For those looking for a little something extra, a brick exterior can also be used in an aesthetic sense. Just as it has been used for centuries to add flair and character to a home’s exterior, you can use it inside your house to provide more personality. For example, a fireplace can be the perfect spot to showcase your creativity by mixing and matching different types of bricks or by using them in interesting patterns.
Other ideas include building a wall of bricks or creating an alcove lined with them. Brick is also versatile and can be employed in many ways, such as creating furniture (small tables or chairs), decor items (like framed mirrors), and even household items like kitchen backsplashes. And if you have any carpentry skills, you may even want to try making these things yourself!
Disadvantages Of Brick Homes Are Also Real
But, brick homes do have some disadvantages. If you are thinking about buying a brick house, you may be familiar with the fact that they’re expensive to build. It costs more money to lay thousands of bricks than to put up a siding of another material. If a house has been made and is already on the market, sellers may pass building costs onto their buyers. Here are some disadvantages of brick homes:
Brick Homes Can Be Challenging To Modify Than Other Types Of Structures
Did you know that there’s a difference between a brick house and a house made of bricks? The former is one built entirely from fired clay bricks, and the latter is something that can be easily modified if you’re the type who loves to rearrange the furniture every two weeks.
The difficulty with modifying a brick house (an entire house made of bricks) is that doing so requires specialized knowledge and tools. Therefore, homeowners who want to make significant modifications (such as adding an extra room or removing walls) might have to hire professionals or take classes in carpentry to make sure they don’t end up rebuilding their entire home after they’re done remodeling.
A Brick Structure Might Shift Over Time
One thing you’ll want to be aware of is a phenomenon called brick shift, which is what happens when your home’s foundation moves. Depending on the climate and how much movement occurs, this can lead to cracks in the structure over time—and in some cases, more serious damage can occur if the shifting becomes severe.
Brick homes aren’t any more likely to experience foundation issues than other types of construction. Still, if there is a lot of movement, it can cause the brick structures to shift and crack along with it.
While this isn’t ideal for any type of house, it’s worth noting that brick tends to be more stable than other materials such as a wood framed house or vinyl siding. Also, it’s important to point out that it doesn’t necessarily mean your home will become uninhabitable or lose value just because the walls look slightly cracked.
And suppose you’re looking for information about repairing those cracks (or preventing them from happening). In that case, there are plenty of guides online that will help you maintain your home’s value over time.
Brick Can Be More Expensive To Build With Than Other Materials
If you’re looking to keep your costs as low as possible, brick is not the way to go. Brick is comparable to wood but more expensive than other sidings. And while brick can vary widely in price from location to location and sometimes depends on the quality of the product, it is generally more expensive than other building materials.
Limited Color Choices
Brick is available in different colors, but it is a bit limited. If you’re looking for the most color options for your home, then brick may not be for you. Though painting brick walls is possible, it requires a complicated and expensive prepping of the surface and ongoing proper maintenance to ensure that the paint doesn’t flake off in chunks.
Suppose you like colorful exteriors, and you want more options than just painting your home white or another neutral color. In that case, you might be better off with fiber-cement siding rather than brick.
Brick Homes Tend To Cost More For Labor And Foundation Expenses
Brick houses are heavier than wood, requiring more extensive work. In general, the extra weight comes from the increased amount of material necessary to build a brick home over a structure made from lighter materials. Additionally, since bricks are more expensive than other building materials, the cost of the final product is naturally higher (though it will last longer).
Moreover, suppose you’re looking to save money on labor and construction costs without sacrificing durability or aesthetics. In that case, it might be worth considering another type of home construction for your project.
It’s no wonder that brick is a popular choice for home construction. It’s durable, beautiful, and timeless. However, it is vital to keep in mind the drawbacks of bricks as well, such as their difficulty in being painted or repaired easily. If you’re considering buying a brick house or building one yourself, consider all of the factors at play before making your decision.
Home buying can take months, even years of searching. And the longer you look, the more you’ll pay for your next home. So, if you’re still undecided whether to buy a brick house or any type of home, try HOMES by ARDOR’s easy-to-use site. We’ll put you in touch with a top real estate agent to help you buy the home of your dreams faster and smoother than ever before.
Kris Reid is the CEO of Ardor SEO, a company that helps real estate professionals get more leads and customers to predictably grow their business.
Over the years, Kris acquired extensive knowledge of SEO and its practical applications in various industries, with the main focus on real estate.
In 2021 Ardor launched the Icons of Real Estate Podcast to share proven strategies from the top producing icon agents with the real estate community.
After obtaining the real estate license in 2022, Kris joined eXp Realty and launched Homes by Ardor, the platform that was built to be the fastest way to buy or sell a house. Homes by Ardor also provides leads for its partner companies and realtors.