A home by Bayview Builders and Alt Breeding Schwarz Architects clad in fiber-cement with an asphalt-shingle roof.

Ask the Pros: Builder

Advice on building a home by the bay

What are important factors to consider when selecting siding and roofing for a waterfront residence?

When selecting materials for a waterfront residence, durability is the foremost concern. Since waterfront exposures do not typically have the advantage of trees or other homes blocking them from the water side, they face more extreme wind and moisture. Luckily, the material market has responded with many good options. There are lots of composite siding products available today that will last longer and hold paint finishes better because they do not absorb moisture. Many of today’s roofing products carry lifetime warranties from the manufacturer. My suggestion is to evaluate these products based on their total life-cycle cost versus just their initial cost. Although some products are more expensive, they may last longer or require significantly less maintenance. —David Carlisle, Bayview Builders, Annapolis, Maryland