Curb Appeal with Shutters

Have you ever driven by a home and wondered what could make it more attractive? Something about the home itself seems bland and unappealing. Perhaps the answer is shutters. They provide contrast and interest to a home’s exterior, adding curb appeal, polish, and a wow factor to a home.  Shutters change the look of a home, adding warmth, sophistication, and timelessness. Shutter materials today range from wood to vinyl to composite, with a variety of color choices. Do you want your shutters to be operable or inoperable? Shutters are often hung incorrectly, detracting from the beauty of a home, rather than adding to its appeal. Let HRTI help you with a shutter design and functionality that meets your budget.

Decisions to be made about shutters include whether you want them to operable or inoperable, high-maintenance or low maintenance, and paintable or not. Once those decisions are made, you will also want to consider the look of the shutter you desire.

Exterior Shutters typically are one of three different styles. Let’s take a closer look at each of these choices.

Operable or Inoperable Shutters

Originally, shutters were made to be operable. The shutter predates glass windows and screens so they were opened during the day to allow airflow and sunlight, and closed in the evening to keep out bugs, cold, and critters. With the invention of windows and screens, people no longer had to shut their shutters, unless they were expecting severe weather. In the Denver front range, most people do not need an operable shutter style. Still, if your home is historic or you wish to have an authentic restoration, operable shutters are a possibility and HRTI will work with you to make those choices for your home. If you choose operable shutters, you will want to have HRTI make sure the shutter fits the window, open and close with ease, and are made of a material that will protect your home for years to come.

Inoperable shutters are mainly decorative in function. They frame the window and add charm to a house. Choosing the right shutters for your style of home will be an important decision. You want to make sure the shutters compliment the home. HRTI will help you to consider options and choose the best style for your home.

Maintenance – High or Low

The maintenance of your shutters depends a lot on your construction material. Wood shutters may require the highest degree of maintenance, especially in the Denver Front Range area, with our hot, dry, summers and dry winters. These elements cause wood to warp and crack, if not occasionally treated. Cedar, Redwood, and Basswood, are stronger choices for wood a shutter, as they are mad of harder woods than pine or poplar and therefore resist the elements more than softer woods. However, anyone who has had a wood deck in Colorado knows that even the hardest of woods need yearly care.

Wood Composites are a less maintenance-intense solution for shutters. Because they are composed of wood and synthetic material, manufacturers can factor in substances that make the shutter less impervious to external weather conditions. If made well, these have a long life, and come in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes. HRIT will help you with your wood composite shutter solutions.

The lowest maintenance for shutters typically comes from a vinyl or synthetic foam material. These are fire and water resistant, giving them a longer life. The vinyl shutter are typically hollow and require caps at the end of them. The synthetic foam shutter are usually designed to have the appearance of wood, but cannot be stained. In other words, with vinyl and synthetic shutter options, part of their low maintenance is that you do not paint them.

Shutter Styles — Louvered, Panel, or Board and Batten

Louvered Shutter – This common shutter has the appearance of slats running horizontally across the piece. When operable, these louvers were turned to let in more or less sun and air. Now, these louvers are mostly for appearance on external shutters. The louvered style often looks great on homes that are ornate or classical in appearance, because they can hold their own against the interest of the home.

Panel Shutter – These shutters can come in a variety of looks, but two common panel shutter choices are the shaker and the raised panel. When you think of panel shutter styles, consider the doors of your kitchen cabinets. These are not meant to adjust to exterior light or conditions. They are solid pieces of material that have interest due to their design. The shaker shutter, like the shaker kitchen cabinet, is a simple design with a raised frame and a dropped center. You could choose a double shaker shutter or a single shaker appearance. The double would have an inset box on the top of the shutter and one on the bottom of the shutter. The single would have one inset box for the whole shutter. The raised panel shutter is much like the shaker shutter, but the center of the shutter panel is raised, rather than dropped. So, the frame recedes from the center panel, adding interest to the shutter. Panel shutters, because of their understated, simple design, blend well with a number of house styles. Color adds interest and contrast to these shutter choices. HRTI can show you a number of panel shutter style solutions for your home.

Board and Batten Shutter – Resembling small barn doors, the board and batten shutter adds interest to rustic, cottage, or country houses. The board and batten style usually consists of three or four vertical boards that are held together by horizontal and/or diagonal cross boards. They can be attached with hinges on the side of the window or hung with a pulley system above the exterior window. HRTI helps you with the design of these interesting shutters and systems.

New shutters are a great idea any time but especially when you’re getting new siding.

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