When I first met my husband over 30 years ago and asked him what he did for a living, you could have knocked me over with a feather when he said he hung gutter. Gutter? I'd never given the subject much thought, if any.
Well, I guess I do care if my hair gets wet coming out the front door in the rain. But I never knew all the other pros of having gutters on your home.
Having started in Phoenix, Arizona with our first gutter company, I thought, "Who would put gutter on their house in the desert? It hardly ever rains except during monsoon season, a couple months out of the year, and while it is a heavy downpour, it only lasts for a short time each day."
I soon discovered how wrong I was. Since it is the desert, most people don't have grass, but rock gardens covering their lawn. And even those who did have grass (which is costly to maintain due to the lack of rain) still decorated the outside of their homes with desert themes of rocks and cactus and shrubbery. Rains coming off the roof with no gutters installed not only splashed down onto the soil and muddied the exterior of the home, but it messed up the rock gardens folks were so proud of. So even in an arid climate, we still sold lots of gutter.
Having too much water standing around the foundation of any home is damaging and can cause leaking into basements and undermine even a slab foundation. And even though most homes there were made of stucco, there were plenty with painted wood exteriors and water continuously running down those walls speeds up the time in between paint jobs in order to protect the wood from rotting.
Having lived in a climate for 20 years that gets an average of 45" of annual precipitation, gutters are a definite must. The humid climate combined with water sitting close to the foundation not only damages outer wood and basements, but concrete absorbs the moisture and it gets trapped inside of the more energy-efficient homes built over the last 20 years.
So remember to not only have a good gutter system in place, but keep your gutters free of leaves and debris so they can do the job they were installed for.