Spruce up your home with brick and stone

Brick and stone structures and features can add value to a homeowner’s property, in part because of its aesthetics and also because of its low maintenance and resistance to fire. In fact, the Mason Contractors Association of America reports that homes made of brick command sale prices 6 percent higher than non-brick homes.

Here are some ways the work of a highly rated mason can enhance the look, function and value of your home:

Build an outdoor fireplace or fire pit. Many people are taking their living outdoors, creating brick and stone fire pits for entertaining and relaxation.

Build a barbecue pit. Sure, you can buy a grill at a big box store, but there’s something a little more authentic about food cooked over hardwoods or coals on a brick grill.

Build a knee wall. Finish off the look of your patio with a knee wall and stone caps that separate your hard surfaces from your softer landscaping. This can provide a place for urns containing flowers or additional seating for guests.

Install a patio. Spruce up the backyard by installing a brick or stone patio. It will add value to your home, and provide a good space for an outdoor fire pit.

Tuckpointing. It may be time to fortify your chimney or solidify the veneer of your home.

Columns for fencing. Instead of the chain link or six-foot vinyl fence, give your home a stately look with wrought iron supported by brick pillars.

Edge your driveway and walkways. Put a finishing touch on your hardscaping.

Raise flowers beds. They’re a little easier to maintain and give your garden a more polished look.

Enclose the mailbox. In some neighborhoods, the mailbox is one of the first things you see. A bricked mailbox enclosure adds style to the front of your home.

If you do decide to hire a mason, it’s important to conduct proper research and interview all prospective candidates before making a hiring decision. Click here for tips on selecting a masonry contractor. Sign in to Angie’s List to view customer reviews on highly rated masons in the Washington D.C. area.

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