Best Siding For Your Home: An In-Depth Guide
Why Is The Type Of Siding You Choose Important?
Few things matter as much as your choice for siding— aesthetically speaking. With so many options, the one you choose can make or break your home’s style. For example, if you own a historic Victorian home, you should consider using high-end lap siding. Or, if you plan to sell soon and need to match surrounding homes, look into trim and siding with a similar color scheme.
Regardless of whether your home is a historic landmark, a modern masterpiece, or something in between, there’s a siding material that will complement it perfectly. That’s why it pays to do your homework and learn about the pros and cons of each type so you can make an informed decision.
The visual appeal of your house can be ruined if you go with an inappropriate siding option. That’s why it pays to know a few facts before choosing one.
Choosing The Appropriate Type Of Siding
You should first look at the style of your house and determine what type of home exterior would best suit it. In general, there are four main types of exteriors:
- Siding Material Types – The most basic type of siding material is wood, and it can be either natural or synthetic.
- Architectural Styles – There are many architectural styles, but some of the most popular include the Mediterranean, Spanish, Victorian, and Tudor. All of these styles have unique profile requirements.
- Climate And Location – As we mentioned earlier, the type of siding installed on your home and its color scheme can vary greatly depending on your locale. For example, vinyl is trendy in the Northeast, while stucco is favored in hot and dry areas such as Arizona or Nevada. You should therefore consider what type of siding will work best in your location.
- Workmanship – When it comes to siding, there’s a simple rule: The better the workmanship, the longer your investment will last.
Before you decide on one type of siding materials or another, consider all four factors so you can match your home’s style, climate, and location to the right set of features.
Finally, your selection should be determined by your unique requirements and priorities. When considering long-term savings, homeowners on a budget will balance the short-term gains against the long-term benefits. On the other hand, others will prioritize long-term viability, sturdiness, upkeep, appearance, or energy efficiency.
Primary Siding Materials And When To Optimally Use Them
Wood is a prevalent choice of siding material and can be applied to either new or old houses. While it’s not the most durable of all materials, wood has a character that sets it apart from other siding options. If your home requires major renovations or you live in a high-risk flood zone, you might want to forget about wooden siding. Wood is also flammable, making it a less than ideal choice for climates prone to wildfires.
Wooden siding has its advantages, however. For one thing, wood can be recycled and reused — making it an environmentally sustainable choice. Furthermore, your house will retain heat during cold weather thanks to the material’s thermal mass. Heating and cooling costs will also be reduced as a result.
In general, wooden siding is best for older homes built before the 1970s, which means it isn’t ideal for modern construction. But if you have a late Victorian or early Edwardian home, you might want to consider using wood for its aesthetic appeal and charm.
Pros And Cons
- Wooden siding is an affordable option that looks good and is environmentally conscious.
- When damaged, wood siding can easily replace it in small amounts.
- Installing this product over existing siding materials is not possible.
- Even after treatment with fire-retardants, wood isn’t as fire-resistant as brick or stone.
- Insects and vermin are susceptible to damage.
Brick was a popular choice for home exteriors during the early 20th century, and you’ll frequently see this type of siding in beach houses. Brick is also a classic option that can turn your home into a work of art. There are many different types of bricks suited to a wide range of climates, so if you live somewhere with damp weather, you can probably install brick siding without much risk.
The only real drawback of brick is the cost, as it’s one of the more expensive materials to work with. The installation cost and material cost will rise depending on how much brick siding you decide to put up. Heating and cooling costs will also be higher for homes with brick siding due to the material’s poor insulation properties.
Pros And Cons
- Significantly increases property value.
- When properly installed, it is highly resistant to water, wind, and wind-blown debris damage.
- Available in a wide range of sizes, textures, and colors and can be installed in various configurations.
- Offers superior sound reduction.
- Water can penetrate brick veneers, so they must be placed over a protective covering.
- Mortar joints, like all masonry construction, will wear down with time.
Fiber cement siding is another popular option; the allure of this product lies in its sturdy material that looks like wood or stone but costs less than brick or similar products. The price tag alone makes fiber cement siding an attractive option for those on a budget, but this choice also comes with several notable advantages.
Urban housing is exposed to a great deal of heat and cold, leading to energy loss and discomfort. Fiber cement siding has good insulation properties, and some manufacturers even offer special polymers or coatings that further improve this product’s energy-saving abilities.
Fiber cement is also more resistant than some other materials, which will last longer. This type of siding is also easy to care for and can be painted so it won’t be affected by the many seasonal changes that happen over time. Fiber cement is highly resistant to moisture, insects, mold, and mildew. Installation costs need to be considered as using a professional contractor with experience is recommended.
Pros And Cons
- Has the appearance of wood without the risk of rotting or insect infestation.
- Can be painted in any color desired.
- Resistant to water, fire, insects, and mold/mildew.
- More resistant than wood to insects, mold, mildew, and moisture damage. Also fire-resistant.
- Expensive compared to other siding materials, though prices are expected to decline as the popularity increases.
- Will eventually need to be replaced but lasts longer than other materials.
The advantages of vinyl siding are almost endless. With its stylish finish, vinyl is easy to install and has very few drawbacks. Compared to fiber cement, this material offers superior protection against the environment, eliminating costly repairs.
Vinyl has superior insulation properties, which means your living conditions will be more comfortable throughout the changing seasons. Vinyl sidings are also easy to clean, and they won’t rot or hold water, so you don’t have to worry about mold or mildew growth. Heating and cooling costs will also be reduced thanks to this siding’s insulation.
Vinyl is the most affordable of the options mentioned above, and it has the best value for your money when factoring in its longevity and ease of care/maintenance. It’s highly resistant to moisture damage, rotting, fire, termite infestation, and mold/mildew.
Pros And Cons
- For the past two decades, vinyl has been the most popular siding material in the United States, with a market share of 27%.
- Easily installed, with little to no maintenance needed.
- Resistant to moisture damage, rotting, fire, termites, and mold/mildew.
- Not as environmentally friendly as it is not biodegradable.
- It is not as durable as some other siding materials on the market today. Prone to cracking, warping, and more brittle due to UV light exposure.
The type of siding you choose can significantly impact the appeal and selling point of your home. Factors such as installation cost, maintenance, climate are all considered when deciding which type of siding is right for you.
If you’re having trouble finding what’s best for your needs or need some help getting started with other aspects in this blog post series, contact us! We offer free virtual consultations to walk through your options so that we can find out more about how our services might be able to help improve the curb appeal and value of your property.