Over the years, the great debate within the stone industry has focused on how manufactured stone veneer, or MSV, compares to natural stone. While both provide many benefits, MSV’s lightweight properties, which allow for faster installation and require fewer to no structural interventions such as footings and tie-ins, have given it a clear advantage over natural stone on both commercial and residential projects. Also, unlike full-bed-depth natural stone, MSV can be applied to a variety of substrates including wall sheathing, cement board and concrete.
Part One: A Conversation with Jeff Tew, Director of Technical and Training at Boral Stone Division
What first attracted you to the manufactured stone industry?
I didn’t pick this trade, to be honest, and I wouldn’t say it picked me either. At the start of my career, I had other plans entirely. When those plans didn’t work out, the manufactured stone industry was there for me. Installing MSV paid the bills, taught me a valuable trade, and even gave me an excuse to buy a pickup truck.
Fast forward 20 years and I wouldn’t change a thing! I love being a part of the building and construction industry. More specifically, I love being part of the growth of manufactured stone veneer as an industry subcategory that keeps adapting to stay relevant to new construction styles and buyers.
The safety of employees, partners, customers, and visitors has long been a key mission for the residential construction industry. That focus is even more critical now as builders, remodelers, and contractors navigate the COVID-19 crisis while keeping both their businesses and their team members healthy.
When approaching a residential remodel project, homeowners and professionals alike have a variety of options to prioritize depending on the space(s) involved and the anticipated value of the project in terms of increasing equity. While passion projects such as kitchen and bath remodels often require significant time and budgets, other opportunities take less investment and can prove to be more lucrative in recouping costs—including the use of manufactured stone veneer to enhance curb appeal.