Why Do Beach Houses Have Wood Shingles?

Do you love the look of beach houses having wood shingles? Seaside homes often have an appealing tactile quality, drawing on rough stucco, smooth sea-washed stone, and thick wood shingles!

These are natural materials from real, recognizable places. One of the delights about them is that they look as if they all have a story to tell and the ideal setting in which to tell it.

In this article, I will go through why beach houses tend to have wood shingles and why they are the best choice for houses located in coastal areas. So keep reading to find out more!


Wood shingles are indeed attractive and they can last a long time, too. But it’s important to always take your local climate into account when picking building materials for your new home.

In choosing roof and siding material for your beach house, it is always wise to work with, and not against nature. You need to choose the material with care and with a view to long-term usage and for minimal interruption by nature.

A beach house structure must be built with materials that are tough and ductile so as to resist shock and impact from the elements.

Materials that can best withstand the harsh weather conditions as well as quality construction techniques must be installed to provide a snug home that will ensure comfortable living regardless of weather changes.

For instance, salt water, together with sand blown in alternating directions throughout the day and night, will quickly deteriorate the exterior paint. For this reason, most beach house owners opt for wood siding left to weather naturally.

Also, wood material is considered most when the summer sun is unmercifully beating down the home’s exterior.

Not only should the exterior materials be selected carefully to suit the climate of the area but also your personal design taste.

Unfortunately, many, if not the majority, of coastal homes in the US are not built well enough to put up reasonable resistance to the forces of nature that they will likely be subjected to.

But those seashore houses that are properly constructed will combat the particularly drastic climatic conditions of the shore. Most of the houses there are low-profile structures that can better withstand the battering of the elements.

On the other hand, the higher-profile, multi-storey homes are generally expensive, custom-designed, and planned to fit the site within the esthetic and functional requirements of the owners.



Wood shingles always look nice. The shingles, and wood shakes, are popular for their decorative features. They are available in different colors, widths, lengths, and thicknesses, and give the home a rustic appearance.

They come in different varieties – from the old-fashioned, hand-split, large variety to the ordinary sort. They may also be stained.

Wood shingles change color in a set pattern from the day they are laid.

If they are in a coastal home, they will weather from their original color to a lovely, soft, silvery gray shade. Later, they begin to darken, taking on an increasingly deeper shade of gray, until they eventually look black when wet.

The shingles can be also whitewashed if you like, although they’ll become worn and weathered with age anyway.


Why Are Wood Shingles The Best Roofing And Siding Material For A Beach House?

Wood shingles are often desired by beach house owners because of their natural, rustic look and minimal maintenance requirements. However, what’s more important is the durability of this building material.

Remember that the area climate influences the material’s longevity. Coastal land tends to be humid, very windy, is stressed by winter storms, exposed to waves and salt water, and is largely heated by UV radiation from the sun each day.

These areas also experience intermittent floods that can damage and devalue properties, and promote mold in the house. Intense sunlight is also a major factor as siding and roofs deteriorate more quickly in the full brunt of the sun.

A house located in the coastal area requires installing only the toughest materials. Thus, it is important to pay attention to the condition and composition of the roof and siding of your beach house.

For best performance in areas subject to storms, only high quality building material should be used on the roof where it should also be properly fastened to the sheathing.

A poor roof covering is likely to get destroyed by hurricanes and strong winds that prevail in coastal regions. It will also allow for rain water to enter the house and damage walls, ceilings, flooring, as well as house content.

Wood shingles and shakes that are properly fastened can resist wind damage better than most roofing materials.



Are Wood Shingles Good?

Wood shingles are available either in smooth or textured surfaces, and come with factory-applied paints and stains. If you can afford it, you may prefer to install rugged hand-split wooden shakes, but keep in mind that they are more difficult to install.

All wood shingles are durable, however, they should be finished with stain rather than paint, in which case they will require little maintenance. To avoid black spots caused by fungus, the shingles should be treated with a clear wood preservative every 2 or 3 years.

Also, the wood shingles can be finished with a water-repellent agent containing a mildewcide. A re-application of the preservative every couple of years maintains the wood and protects its natural color, allowing it to age slowly and evenly.

Wood is cheaper than brick or stone and is capable of any sort of treatment. Wood shingles are affordable and are good particularly suitable for sloping roofs.

They are a relatively good insulator but they provide little resistance to fire. However, branded, high quality wood shingles are normally wind resistant and fire retardant. So if you own a home in a coastal area, you shouldn’t settle for anything less.

If, as many beach house owners do, you opt for the natural look of wood shingles, use only No.1 grade as it is all-heartwood, all-edge grain, and tapered. These shingles are typically applied with 5 inches to the weather, and 4 bundles of 16-inch shingles are required to cover one square.

Wood shingles are also available in the form of shake panels. Each shake panel is made of individual shingles that are factory-attached to a backing board. Like shingles, the shake panels can be purchased pre-stained and pre-painted.

Although shingle panels provide the same appearance as individual shingles, they are easier to install and go up faster. However, shake panels are more expensive than wood shingles.


How Long Do Wood Shingles Last?

Wood shingles are more expensive than siding (also called clapboard or weatherboarding) but they require little to no maintenance and are commonly believed to last more than 20 years.

Even though siding is the least expensive of outside wall coverings, it requires repainting every 3 to 4 years, depending on the type of paint used, and whether it has been painted by a skilled technician or it’s been done by yourself.

Also, if you spray the wood shingles with wood preservatives, you can extend their life span and they’ll last longer without leakage.


Final Thoughts,

When considering the roofing and siding material for your beach house, you need to take into account certain factors like your personal taste, your budget, and ultimately, the climate where you live. For instance, wood shingles wouldn’t work well in arid, desert environments.

It can be easy to personalize the look of your beach house based on the factors above. Just remember that the climate must be a prime consideration when deciding on building materials, to ensure that you, your family, and your property will always stay safe and protected.