Brick house or stucco house? Depends on the investor type

Market conditions may be chipping away at the Canadian bias for brick houses, with a new poll suggesting investors see little short-term value in what remains a more costly purchase.

A brick house means lower long-term maintenance costs for investors, while a stucco house is a good short-term investment, say experts, speaking to the findings of a new CREW poll.

The online survey suggests 51 per cent of investors place no premium on brick houses at all.

But that may run counter to the very tangible benefits around maintenance costs and resale value.

“For practical reasons, brick is better," says Erwin Szeto, investor and sales representative at Rock Star Real Estate. "Brick will withstand weathering, rain/snow and resists damage better than stucco. 

“You never have to paint brick, therefore lower maintenance costs and what real estate investor does not appreciate lower maintenance costs?”

But for the real estate investor using a short-term strategy, such as flipping a house or building one, stucco makes more sense. “Stucco is usually less expensive than brick,” adds Szeto. “The look is more modern and offers greater curb appeal, allowing the investor to potentially sell the property for a higher price.”

CREW’s poll found that 21 per cent of respondents believe a premium of between six and 10 per cent should be placed on a brick house, while 17 per cent said less than five per cent, nine per cent said between 11 and 30 per cent and two per cent said 31 to 50 per cent.

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