Alternatives to gutters are not always an option because this is often based on the original construction or architecture of a home. There are some alternatives that protect your home almost as well as the gutters, but none that particularly guarantee one hundred percent protection.
The first alternative to a gutter system has to do with architecture. When designing your home, use a Spanish style long extension of an overhang. This can help prevent water from splashing or flowing back to the foundation wall. Extending an overhang three to four feet can prevent water from encroaching on or damaging the soil around a foundation. Most of the time an overhang of two to four feet can protect a home with an exterior wall height of 10 feet.
The second alternative is a concrete perimeter with brick walls. Pouring concrete around a home can prevent water from penetrating the soil. The water can still splash up on the walls so you do this, make sure that you have maintenance material on your home. Vinyl or brick will work just fine for this. The concrete essentially serves as a giant splash block for the rain that pours down off your roof. This concrete can prevent you from needing gutters as long as the grade of your yard is steep enough to make sure the water flows away.
When a home is built standard with an overhang of 1 ½ to two feet and the walls are 10 to 12 feet high, the wind can blow the water back onto the walls. The water will then flow down the wall onto foundation, on the windows, windowsills, and footers. This can erode landscaping, your lawn, soften the soil, and cause foundations to fail or begin to crumble. Installing a gutter system can be slightly expensive, but can save thousands in the long run when considering how much damage can occur to your home.
Gutters are relatively low-cost items for the amount of investment that they protect. Protecting a home from settling can save you hundreds of thousands of dollars in the long run. Many people pay more to have a home foundation repaired than they would pay for a fifteen hundred square foot addition. These repairs can seem so costly that it’s almost not worth the value other than saving the nostalgia of a home place. A simple gutter system can protect you from this type of catastrophic failure.
If building a home from scratch, considering an alternative to gutters may be an option. If your home is already built, consider getting gutters and using a system that suits your needs aesthetically as well as functionally.