News & Information

Stone In and Around Your Home – Cultured or Natural?

November 21, 2017

We get asked the question a lot - if using stone in and around a home, should you use cultured or natural stone?

The look of stone has long been admired in both building and landscape design. There’s something about stone that makes us pause and take in its beauty. Stone connects us to history. It feels other-worldly. It provides a quiet, yet strong architectural element. Stone is simultaneously sophisticated and inviting. Stone also provides beautiful texture in the homes and landscapes we create at Dunbar Builders. Stone comes in a vast array of colors and shapes - the aesthetic options are endless. A stone fireplace, whether indoors or out, makes you want to grab a blanket, pull up right beside it, and get horizontal. A home with a stone exterior, a stone chimney, a stone wall, or a stone driveway makes you want to discover more about the home; it makes you want to go inside.

Now that we have convinced you how awesome stone is, let’s address the original: which is the better choice, cultured (synthetic) stone or natural stone?

First, a little more education on each:

Natural Stone

Natural Stone is just what you would think it is - a stone made by nature. Natural stone is quarried and cut into various sizes and shapes depending on what it will be used for.

Cultured Stone

Cultured stone is manmade stone. Cultured stone is a mixture of cement and other components that are colored to look like real stone.

The Benefits of Using Cultured Stone in Your Home

Dunbar Builders encourages our clients to use cultured stone in the homes we build and the yards we design. Yes, we know - natural stone is real, and cultured stone is not. We get the hesitation, but there are reasons we at Dunbar Builders enjoy using cultured stone.

Lower Cost

First of all, forget that cultured stone isn’t real stone because the beauty of cultured stone has grown exponentially over the years, which means it is both natural and real-looking. Our clients realize they can now achieve the look, the feel, and the historical aesthetic of natural stone with cultured stone, and it costs less.

Less Labor

Installing cultured stone requires less labor and is easier to work with due to the cuts of the pieces. When homeowners choose natural stone, they often have to hire a specialized mason to install it in order to produce the best result possible. Another appealing factor of cultured stone is there is less waste. We are all trying to be more environmentally conscious and reduce our waste these days. Because cultured stone is manufactured, the pieces are produced to fit together better. Fewer cuts mean less waste!

No Visual Difference

There truly isn’t much of a visual difference between natural and cultured stone. Cultured stone has just as many color and shape options as natural stone. Stone manufacturers today use hand-coloring techniques that provide a very realistic look. We enjoy using cultured stone as a material in the homes we build and the landscapes we design.

After all, Dunbar Builders wants to build homes that make you stop, make you pause, make you want to come inside. And we believe we are doing just that.

Contact us to get started on your new home!