One of the big mistakes homeowners make with California stucco homes where I live is to paint them. Stucco was meant to breath and painting seals the stucco surface and it can't breath so moisture can build up and create some secondary conditions, the least of which could be staining.
Stucco finished homes are very prevalent in California and many other states as well. Stucco can come in many textures and patterns from a stippled sand texture to a troweled knocked down look. And when the stucco need freshening or a new finish, the first thing a homeowner thinks of is that the house needs painting. When REALTORS® consult with homeowners to prepare the home for market this conversation needs to take place to preserve the value and integrity of the original stucco finished home.
Fogging is a process that re-color coats the original stucco and maintains the porosity of the stucco. Fogging is a cement-based material mixed with water and is applied with a , not unlike what you would think of as a paint sprayer. The nozzles are a bit different but otherwise looks like you are painting. You are applying a cement colored coating ( without the sand) that will adhere to the original texture and give the same or similar texture as what previously existed.
The damage potential of painting stucco can trap moisture and actually cause the paint to discolor unevenly creating the need to repeat the process within just a few years. And that does even bring into this conversation the big "M" word. A well applied fog coat can last 3 to 4 times longer than paint and breathes just like the original stucco.
An excellent source for more information on Fog Coating is linked here. It is a great read and a great resource to add to your information when counseling clients when preparing their home for sale or to inform your Buyers at time of purchase. Caring properly for your most expensive asset should be in everyones interest. If you have stucco no matter where you live, check out fog coating before talking to the house painting company that will be all to happy to oblige your request for a clean fresh look on your home by painting it.
In case your wondering, I learned this lesson first hand and thought if I shared this tip with you, you could prevent the painting error by learning how to preserve and enhance our stucco finished homes.
If you live in areas that typically have stucco exterior finished homes or if your readers can benefit from this information about fogging vrs painting, please feel free to re-blog the post.