Homes built with brick, block, stone remain top choice for consumers, masonry industry group reports

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Relied on for centuries to build sturdy, long-lasting homes, brick, block and stone continue to be the top building material of choice for Ontario home buyers, according to new research published by MasonyWorx.

An overwhelming 90 per cent of consumers who participated in the province-wide study said they would prefer to buy homes made of masonry products — brick, block and stone — over other exterior finishes, such as wood, vinyl siding or stucco.

The majority of respondents said they favour masonry because it’s durable, attractive, easy to maintain and adds greater long-term value to their investment than other building materials.

“Brick, block and stone are among the longest used and most trusted building materials used today for very good reason — they’re incredibly durable, versatile and effective,” said Judy Pryma, president of MasonryWorx, a trade association for Ontario masonry industry professionals.

The study, conducted by Redfern Research and commissioned by MasonryWorx, polled 1,500 adult Ontarians to gauge consumer attitudes and awareness of masonry products.

Other highlights of the survey include:

  • Consumers put masonry first in several key categories, including fire resistance (82%), durability (81%), stability in extreme weather (78%), visual appeal (78%), resale value (75%), least maintenance required (67%) and termite resistance (74%).
  • Masonry was also seen by respondents as the most environmentally friendly construction solution. Brick, block and stone ranged first in several environmental categories, including longest lifespan (81%).
  • Ontarians believe that stone or brick cladding helps to create a unique community character and most would prefer to live in a community with homes that are completely clad in brick or masonry.
  • The majority of Ontarians believe that municipalities and regional governments should encourage developers to build homes with masonry exteriors.

In addition to durability, curb appeal and safety, masonry buildings provide significant cost benefits over their lifetime, said Pryma.

Brick, block and stone are proven to provide energy savings by regulating temperature fluctuations and keeping homes cooler in summer and warmer in winter. In addition, masonry doesn’t require painting or washing, which translates to less work for homeowners and lower maintenance costs.

“Resale value for masonry homes is also about 6% higher on average, which ultimately means a better return on your investment,” said Pryma. “Considering a masonry building costs only about 2% to 4% more to build, it’s an investment that quickly pays for itself.”

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