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House rendering is a service that offers both aesthetic and practical benefits. Walk down an average street in the UK and you may notice that every other house has a unique colour or facade. Granted, white render seems to be the most popular option at the moment, but more artistic homeowners can choose from a variety of colours and effects, from pink to pebble dashing.

Whether this looks aesthetically pleasing or tacky will depend on who you ask. There are several pros and cons to external wall rendering, so it is important to know all of the facts before booking a service.

Importantly, you should make sure that your render is applied by a professional local renderer. Not only will they be able to complete the installation to a high quality, they will also likely offer an impressive guarantee to cover ongoing maintenance.
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Advantages and disadvantages of house rendering

While external wall rendering offers a wide range of advantages, there are some clear reasons why you won’t find it on every house in the UK. For some the reasons are purely to do either liking or disliking the look, while certain properties simply do not require it.

As with any major home improvement service, it is important to know all of the pros and cons of rendering before making a commitment:

Pros:

  • Render comes in a huge variety of colours and designs, making it a great way to brighten up poor looking walls or cover mismatching bricks. Depending on your choice, it can also be an excellent method for adding curb appeal to a property.
  • External rendering is a better looking alternative to painted brickwork, which can lose its ‘new look’ very quickly.
  • Render provides an extra line of defence against penetrating damp. This is particularly beneficial for older properties with solid walls (newer properties with cavity walls are not as vulnerable). Remember, render will not fix existing damp issues, so call a damp proof specialist first if necessary.
  • If you are thinking of having external insulation installed on your property, having render applied at the same time can be highly economical. For example, it would save you having to hire a scaffolder twice!
  • High quality render can provide the perfect defence against graffiti.

Cons

  • Render can require fairly regular maintenance, as weathering can eventually cause it to crack and peel off. This is why it is important to hire a Pro who can provide a guarantee!
  • Whether the benefits of external rendering will justify the cost will vary from property to property. Remember, new properties with cavity walls are not as vulnerable to penetrating damp.
  • Depending on where you live and your choice of render, you may require planning permission to have it installed. This is almost certain if your property is a listed building or located in a conservation area.
  • You may need to remove, relocate or extend external features which the rendering work would cover, such as air vents or alarm boxes.


What do I need to know about house rendering?

There are a few things to consider before you book an external rendering service. 

First of all, render can cover problems, but not fix them. If your walls are in a state of disrepair, or if you already have issues with damp, you should have your property inspected by a local surveyor

Second, it will be worth contacting your local authority to check their policy with external rendering. For example, if your render would cause your house to clash with your neighbours, they could complain to force you to undo the work. Your renderer should be able to make any necessary applications on your behalf.

Thirdly, if you are thinking of selling your home in the near future, it will be a good idea to speak with a local estate agent. They should be able to tell you if a rendering job would be likely to add value to your home, or if your money would be better spent elsewhere.

Finally, you should take some time to understand the different types of render and what they offer:

  • Acrylic - This is the cheapest option and comes in a variety of colours. The downside is that it is not very breathable.
  • Mineral - This option is more hard wearing and breathable than acrylic, though it is also more expensive.
  • Silicone silicate - The most expensive option, this type of render is self cleansing and very breathable. It requires mild temperatures to be able to dry, which means it can usually only be installed in summer.


How much does house rendering cost?

The cost of an external wall rendering service will depend on the size of your property, along with your choice of render. Generally speaking, you could expect to pay anything between £25 and £65 per square meter, though you should make sure to collect several quotes before deciding on who to hire.

The majority of homed which have render applied are older solid wall properties. As these do not have cavity walls, insulation can only be installed onto a wall’s surface. Doing so indoors would ruin the decor and decrease the amount of usable space, and so many solid-wall-homeowners instead choose to have insulation installed externally. 

If this is a service you are interested in, it could be an excellent idea for you to have your external rendering done as a way of covering the insulation. This would lower the expenses of the rendering job, such as the cost of hiring scaffolding, and you could also enjoy discounts elsewhere. To give you an idea, the average cost of applying external insulation with a render finish is around £70 to £90 per square meter.