3 Residential Product Trends—and How To Use Them

During this year’s International Builders’ Show, Westlake Royal Building Products showcased three prominent residential product trends and several sub-trends designed to educate and inspire pros and consumers alike. The compilation of trends explores how design is evolving under new and ongoing influences, how pros and homeowners are adapting to changing conditions, and how we collectively leverage design to better our lives inside and outside the home.

Here’s a look at the trends our experts are seeing, along with tips for including them on your projects.

Residential Product Trends: 1 — Design Versatility

Bringing the visions of homeowners, architects, designers, and builders to life demands the creation of unique and harmonious indoor and outdoor spaces that reflect continuously evolving tastes. This can be accomplished through siding, trim, stone, roofing, and outdoor products that deliver the highest level of design versatility.

Residential Product Trends: Multi-Textured Facades

Homeowners and homebuyers tired of ho-hum, cookie-cutter houses are seeking out aesthetics to add an eye-catching pop that increases curb appeal and helps differentiate them from others on the block. For builders, these changes can create a more appealing streetscape in communities with limited elevations.

Tips for Multi-Textured Facades:

Blend colors: Play with the different areas of the façade by incorporating different colors or profiles within the same cladding material. For example, specify gable siding in a color one or two shades removed from the rest of the façade or add a bold-yet-complementary color to a bump-out or other accent.

Play with profiles: Similarly, matching colors but different siding profiles—such as lap siding on the main façade with shingles in the gables—can create a subtle but eye-catching shift.

Create texture: Blend siding materials for a textured look. This can be made literally, such as adding from more robust materials like a stone half wall or column, or visually, from movement between materials and authentic, wood-like profiles.

Leverage accessories: Trim, shutters, and columns are an excellent way to infuse style and create variation in low-profile ways.

Foundry Split Shake in Arizona Clay helps meet residential product trends calling for multi-textured facades
Foundry Split Shake Siding, seen here in the new Arizona Clay color, can be used in gables and other accent areas to help create in-demand multi-textured facades.

Biophilic Design

Connecting people more closely with nature and natural elements, biophilic design can lead to increased well-being and productivity. Growing wellness and environmental concerns are driving demand for outdoor living space improvements and integration of nature in design, including elements like green roofs, living walls, and large windows.

Products to consider:

Kindred Fire Bowls help meet residential product trends demanding outdoor living and biophilia
The Kindred Lyra Fire Bowl combines a modern linear design with an earthy, honed finish.

Solutions for Every Home Style

Flexibility and versatility are key for creating inviting facades. Westlake Royal Building Products’ extensive portfolio of exterior products makes it easy. These include:

Residential Product Trends: 2 — High-Performance Products & Materials

As climate extremes have intensified, the demand for high-performance, weather-resistant building products has surged. Homeowners and building professionals are faced with complex product selection decisions—navigating around the areas of regional weatherability, performance, and sustainability.

Residential Product Trends: Extreme Weather Protection

Exterior products are the first line of defense for a home during a storm, fire, or other climate event. As extreme weather incidents continue to mount, it’s critical to choose resilient building materials.

For example:

Newpoint Steel roofing
Newpoint Concrete Tile Roofing.

Long Product Life Cycles

Materials that don’t have to be replaced as often or maintained as frequently are a fundamental part of sustainably built homes—not to mention preferable for homeowners who don’t want to invest time and money into maintenance or replacement.

Tips for longevity:

Products to consider:

TruExterior poly-ash siding and trim
TruExterior Siding in Nickel Gap and TruExterior Trim on the Bella Terra wedding venue project in Texas.

Sustainability

Among the Westlake Royal’s portfolio of products are a number of options made with resource-efficient materials and using efficient manufacturing processes. This includes:

Residential Product Trends: 3 — Innovative Industry Solutions

Building professionals face the daunting challenges of labor shortages and product delivery issues, while trying to gain strong project margins and grow their business. To meet these varied and evolving needs, Westlake Royal Building Products is exploring every innovation, from new products to support services.

Residential Product Trends: Labor-Supporting Innovations

It’s no secret that the construction industry continues to struggle to find enough workers, especially as older contractors retire and fewer young people enter the trades. Using products that are straightforward to install and working with companies that offer extensive training options is crucial to keeping jobsites moving.

Products to consider:

Versetta Stone fireplace surround
Versetta Stone panelized stone siding makes it simple to create fireplace surrounds and other stone accents on the interior and exterior.

Robust Contractor Resources

Product and installation knowledge are key to crew success. Take advantage of manufacturer-provided literature, courses, and training to keep your installers trained and up to date. For example:

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Introducing Knock Down Column Wraps With Easy, Affordable Curb Appeal 

During the 2024 International Builders’ Show, Westlake Royal Building Products™ launched its new Royal™ Knock Down Column Wraps, an easy-to-install and cost-effective way to transform ho-hum posts with a classic update and add instant curb appeal to the home. The column wraps feature best-in-class lock miter joints for easy assembly, so they can seamlessly slip over existing, outdated columns to give a porch or exterior a cleaner and more modern look.

Made of durable cellular PVC, Royal Knock Down Column Wraps are resistant to moisture and avoid issues found in traditional wood columns, such as warping, rotting, and insect damage. In addition to low-maintenance qualities and long-lasting performance, the column wraps are beautifully versatile: They come in a bright white color and smooth texture, which can be left as is or painted to complement a home’s exterior color palette.

“At Westlake Royal, we are committed to understanding and addressing customer needs, leveraging those insights to bring forth innovative solutions,” says Steve Booz, vice president of marketing at Westlake Royal Building Products. “Recognizing the increased importance of curb appeal, we’re excited to introduce a knocked down version of our popular Royal PVC Column Wraps. These new wraps require minimal maintenance and can be effortlessly installed over existing porch columns, offering a simple and accessible way for both professionals and DIY enthusiasts to achieve porch transformations.”

Royal Knock Down Column Wraps are available in 4×4, 6×6, and 8×8 sizes, and in two standard lengths—8’6” & 10’. Each piece is also delivered flat in heavy-duty corrugated boxes for added protection and features a protective film on the outer surface to help keep the product clean and ensure a flawless installation.

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New Royal WoodTone Styles Blend Rich Looks With Warmth of Beadboard

Classic beadboard is making a comeback, adding a timeless design and charming finish to a range of exterior home styles. And there’s no easier way to capture the look than with Royal™ WoodTone Styles, introduced by Westlake Royal Building Products™ at the 2024 International Builders’ Show. WoodTone Styles blend the rich look of stained wood with the rustic warmth of beadboard trim to dress up porch ceilings and soffits

Made of cellular PVC, Royal WoodTone Styles are low-maintenance, long-lasting, and moisture and insect resistant. The beadboards feature hidden nailing hems for easy installation.

“The Royal WoodTone Styles line seamlessly combines enduring beauty with unmatched performance,” says Steve Booz, vice president of marketing for Westlake Royal Building Products. “Individuals who value the cozy characteristics of beadboard can now experience it with a level of low maintenance and durability that surpasses traditional wood options.”

Royal WoodTone Styles offer the elegant look of stained wood in six on-trend colors: American Walnut, Oak Ridge, Natural Cedar, Smoke Grey, Weathered Oak, and Charred Timber. The line features a 6″ V-grooved plank, beadboard, and crown and bed mould.

Woodtone Styles in Natural Cedar

Applications for WoodTone Styles

Beadboard paneling is an easy way to provide a more classic aesthetic in overlooked areas of the exterior, as well as add a premium look that can elevate the perceived value of a home. On the exterior beadboard is most often found on porch ceilings to create a finished aesthetic as well as to hide leveling irregularities and in soffits with exposed rafters or enclosed built-up soffits.

Choosing a beadboard made with cellular PVC, particularly the stained-wood looks of this latest offering, can provide the authentic look of wood without the typical repainting and maintenance needs.

To stay up to date on new product introductions, project case studies, design trends, and industry insights, subscribe to our enewsletter.

Energy Efficiency Takes Center Stage for Texas Off-Grid House

On a sprawling piece of land outside Fort Worth, Texas, builder Jon Dawson is putting his experience and ingenuity—and dreams—to work, building an off-grid house with energy efficiency and performance top of mind.

When completed, the 1,280-square-foot, three-bed/two-bath house with cedar looks will serve as a temporary home for Dawson and his wife while they build the main house on the property, and then will stand as a guest house. “The goal of this home is to remove myself from the rat race and have my own little piece of paradise,” Dawson says.

Cedar Looks Lend Beauty to Off-Grid House

Taking advantage of the ranch’s 360-degree views, the home is positioned on a hill facing the sunset. An expansive, 1,000-square-foot porch wraps around two sides, with overhangs blocking radiant heat from the large sliding doors in the afternoons.

After considering several options, including vinyl and wood, Dawson chose Cedar Renditions® for the soffit and overhangs for the rear of the home and for the ceiling of the vaulted front porch. “It was the most realistic looking and appealing product I could see,” he says. “When I saw it had a rich cedar color, it was a no brainer. There’s no maintenance needed, no waste, it’s easy to install, and lasts a long time.”

Dawson admits he was nervous to install aluminum siding for the first time, but found Cedar Renditions to be straightforward. “Install the J channel and slide the panels in—it was foolproof. Cutting was easy with a miter saw, and using snips for the can lights,” he recalls. “I finished my covered porch, a 20×10 vaulted ceiling, in a day by myself.”

The Cedar Bark color of the Cedar Renditions matches the color of the deck boards for a cohesive look.

Energy Efficiency Starts With Robust Envelope

Beyond looks, Dawson sought to infuse energy efficiency at every turn while staying within his budget. After a lot of research he ended up with Passive House-inspired perfect-framed walls, which eliminates exposed eaves. He used mineral wool cavity insulation, then added 1-1/2” of rigid foam to the exterior walls to eliminate thermal breaks.

The roof system also has 3” of the polyiso foam board plus a 1” gap underneath the metal panels to provide circulation and cooling, helping to keep the framing from transferring heat into the attic.

“All insulation meets at every point, so when the sun hits, it doesn’t transfer to the framing,” Dawson says.

Inside, Dawson installed DIY-friendly mini-split systems. A Span Panel smart electrical panel provides usage data for each breaker. “I know exactly how much energy I’m using at any given time,” Dawson explained. “It gives me an understanding on how to use the home in efficient ways.”

Prior to completion, Dawson will add solar panels, keeping the house off the electrical grid. The property has a well along with a 1,000-gallon cistern for storing rainwater, which will be used for chickens and horses.

Throughout the build, Dawson has turned to other industry experts for guidance, and has chronicled the journey on his Instagram channel. Follow along here.

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