* That's a piece of "hardware cloth": galvanized, half inch grid stuff that I trimmed 6 inches high and 7-1/2 inches in circumference --just stuffed into the downspout.
* This plastic gutter system looks good and it neatly screws onto the fascia board --SO much better than pounding in a huge, wood splitting spike. Otherwise I can't say much for it. It was very difficult to assemble (rubber seals way too tight!) and it leaks. Using silicone caulk afterwards didn't work out because the joint seals need to be able to slide with thermal expansion/contraction.
* I think the idea is to get the water aways away from the foundation --and to lead it away from where it would drip on your head near the doorways and around an open porch. Just 4 feet of gutter would work above the doorways.
* I've heard it said that gutters are a bad idea --source of rot around the eaves. Just let the rain fall down around the house in a "drip line", such that the water is dispersed --rather than creating flood zones at the downspouts --and no frigging gutters to clean out. (Or just go live out of an RV somewhere. Owning a house is such a damned albatross burden and expense --from the wheezy roof on down.
* Don't worry about "curb appeal" --go for endurance. A 50 year rubber/membrane roof seems ideal and I think it's walk proof. Metal roofs really last but they have to be done right --or there'll be seal/joint and condensation problems. If you reroof with composition stuff, buy the best "130 MPH" stuff. Don't go for a ricked shake roof.
* I don't know what to say about all the vents required by code now --an invitation to leaks. Must be some way around that. (Powered ventilation?)