Last updated on February 9, 2023

We recently explored the most common siding materials used for home renovation and remodeling in Des Moines. Wood, metal, and vinyl siding are often used for commercial and residential projects, and you can learn more about the benefits of these materials here.

Each material mentioned in our previous article could be perfect for your next project, but there are other options to consider. Maybe you want something a little more appealing than vinyl? Wood might be too traditional for your build, and metal could appear too industrial…

Choice is one of the biggest advantages of improving your home with Des Moines contractors. A wide selection of materials will allow you to create a home that perfectly matches your unique sense of aesthetic.

The following materials should also be considered for your home exterior. Consider the benefits, the downsides, and find the perfect fit for your home.

1) Stucco for a Textured Exterior Home Renovation

If you want to create your own little corner of the Mediterranean right here in Des Moines, Stucco could be the ideal exterior finish for you. Stucco is also ideal for mission and ranch style homes.

This material is popular because it’s durable and it can last for the lifetime of your home. It is made from a mixture of cement, sand, and lime. It is installed with a waterproof barrier and a screening to help the stucco adhere to your exterior. When professionally installed, there’s nothing that looks quite like this premium material.

Most modern homes utilize a smooth finish stucco, but there are other options like patterned stucco, rough stucco, and even stucco that is finished with micro-pebbles for a unique 3D texture. Combine this versatility with unique coloring and you could perform a home remodel with an exterior that is unlike any other.

The durability and versatility does come with a cost. On average, homeowners pay between $9 and $12 per square foot. Special finishes and the current siding on your home could add to the final contract price.


  • One of the longest lasting exterior materials for home renovation and remodeling.
  • Repairs can be quickly performed and can be flawlessly matched to existing siding.
  • Fire repellant and resistant to insect and rodent infestation.
  • A suitable siding material for architecturally designed homes with unusual geometry.
  • Color options are only limited by your imagination.
  • Maintenance is minimal. Check yearly for cracks and other damage.


  • Installation and future repairs must be performed by highly experienced Des Moines contractors.
  • Any movement in the home, and temperature extremes can crack poorly installed stucco.
  • Less water resistant than brick, stone, wood, and vinyl.
  • Textured stucco is difficult to keep clean.


2) Fiber Cement for a Convenient Exterior Renovation Job

Is it possible to perform a home renovation on a budget and still get an exterior with the look of natural wood, stucco, or masonry? With fiber cement, it can be. This siding material is made from a blend of cement, cellulose, and sand to create a long lasting finish. Fiber cement siding is formed in a factory and it can be primed or even pre-painted for your convenience.

The key advantages of this material are durability, cost, and versatility. You can have fiber cement formed to replicate virtually any material that you can think of. From masonry to wooden planks, you could get the aesthetic you want at a very reasonable cost.

Homeowners typically pay less than $8 per square foot for fiber cement siding.


  • Fiber cement is non-flammable, it is impervious to rot, and it will resist insect infestation.
  • A near unlimited selection of designs, textures, and colors.
  • Will last for 25 years and even longer in some cases.
  • Maintenance is minimal.
  • Can be refinished.


  • Susceptible to moisture damage during the winter if improperly installed or finished.
  • Can be chipped from debris in storms.
  • Installation is messy and challenging.
  • Repairs may be hard to match to existing siding.


3) Fiberglass Siding for a Renovation with a Natural Aesthetic

You’re probably familiar with fiberglass as a form of home insulation. Maybe you even plan to remove your old fiberglass batts as part of your Des Moines home remodeling. While fiberglass is a highly effective insulator, it’s also a potential siding material.

Fiberglass can be factory molded to replicate wood planks, shingles, and other materials. It is also relatively cost effective, especially when considering that it is long lasting.

Strength and durability are key with this material. Fiberglass will stand up to heavy storms, it will resist scratches and dents, and it can maintain its structural integrity in changing temperatures. This material can be installed without caulk and other fillers, so maintenance throughout the lifetime of ownership is low.

The only real downside to this material is that it can be expensive, and it comes pre-finished in standard colors. This can limit your freedom of design. The average cost per square foot is between $9 and $12.


  • Fast installation without the need for caulk and fillers.
  • Highly rigid and able to withstand impact damage.
  • Can be produced to emulate shingles, clapboard, Dutch lap etc.
  • Can last up to 40 years.
  • Low maintenance.
  • High moisture resistance.
  • Immune to insect infestation and rot.


  • Repairs can be expensive and difficult to match with existing siding.
  • Color retention is largely unproven, since fiberglass is a relatively new siding material.
  • Color and design options are limited by the manufacturer.


4) Stone Siding for an Elegant Home Renovation in Des Moines

Lastly, we come to what is widely considered the most beautiful siding material of all. Stone siding is expensive, it’s difficult to work with, and you’ll need to rely on the skills of expert Des Moines contractors. However, the aesthetic benefits can outweigh the drawbacks, even if you do have to pay a premium to have stone installed on your home exterior.

Stone is available in a wide variety of colors. Textures are near limitless, and individual section sizes can also vary. Stone can create almost any aesthetic that you can think of. From a granite mountain home, to a limestone modern-day castle, stone can do it all. It’s impervious to all weather extremes, and this type of siding will last for your lifetime and beyond.

Cost is a major factor, but it’s important to consider how your maintenance costs over the lifetime of ownership could be reduced when compared to other materials. For your home renovation project, you can expect to pay between $15 and $40 per square foot of stone siding. The specific stone, its quality, color, and shape will all be determining factors when it comes to price.

Stone veneer or even brick could be considered as more affordable alternatives, but you’ll sacrifice some durability for the lower cost.


  • Stone can quite literally last the lifetime of your home and beyond.
  • Color and texture will remain intact for decades.
  • No other material looks quite like natural stone.
  • Huge variation of color, size, and texture options.
  • Available as a veneer if you want the aesthetic without the cost.


  • Most expensive siding material available.
  • Requires professional installation and repairs. A qualified Des Moines contractor is necessary.
  • Mortar can deteriorate in some cases. Any future maintenance will need to be performed by a professional.

Recreate Your Property with Home Renovation

There’s always opportunity to improve your home, both inside and out. Siding is the most important exterior feature of all. It improves curbside appeal, and it can help to protect the entire structure of your home. Price is an important consideration, but durability and beauty should never be overlooked. It’s also important to consider how maintenance requirements could offset a low or high price for siding installation.

You don’t have to make the big home renovation decisions alone. With the help of general contractors Des Moines, you could develop the perfect renovation plan that brings your home into the modern age. Get the beautiful exterior you’ve always wanted, with expert project management and support along the way.

If you’re ready to create a home that really matters, talk to the team at HomeWorx Iowa. We’re standing by to take your concepts and turn them into a home that you can see, feel, and appreciate every day.