Real Estate

Selecting the right siding for the home

The exterior of your home is the first thing visitors and potential buyers see. If your home is older, or if the current exterior is in need of a fix, you’ll want to make sure you know the best siding for your home. It is important to ask yourself several questions before choosing the best coating. How much do I want to spend on siding? What style do I want the exterior of my house to convey? Do I live in an area prone to high winds or hail? Am I comfortable installing the siding myself? How long do I plan to live in my current home? How much value can I estimate will be added to the house with each type of siding? Asking these questions will give you a good idea of ​​how much you’re comfortable spending, what you’re looking for, and how much maintenance your siding will need.

There are more options than ever when it comes to the types, styles and colors of siding available. New siding can go a long way in improving the appearance and value of your home. If you’re trying to sell your home, the new siding may be the determining factor in whether or not it sells quickly. Let’s look at the different types of siding available.

First of all, we will cover the “has been” (some of you may face this situation). Asbestos siding was very popular many years ago, but is no longer manufactured. This is due to tiny hooks that would escape from the material and embed themselves in a person’s lungs, leading to a lung condition known as asbestosis. Asbestos has been banned, so if you have an older home that currently has asbestos siding, make sure no pieces break off. If you are missing asbestos shingles, you can purchase non-asbestos synthetic replacement shingles from specialty manufacturers. If you plan to inhabit your entire home that currently contains asbestos siding, be sure to contact a professional if you don’t have siding experience. Typically, a professional will cover the entire area of ​​asbestos siding with a protective layer to block any asbestos particles before applying the new layer of the siding of your choice.

Let’s now move on to the most valuable products: a product that has been around for millennia, but is still a valuable option, is wood siding. Wood siding is moderately priced depending on the type of wood. However, wood siding requires a lot of maintenance, compared to more maintenance-free sidings. You should stain or paint the wood fairly regularly and make sure to seal any gaps. It’s a lot like maintaining a wood deck, although it may not require as much work since the decking is not a flat surface. Another thing to watch out for with wood siding is termites. Termites and water can cause wood to rot, rendering the siding basically useless. However, the benefit of this type of siding is beauty. Well-maintained wood siding adds great value to your home.

Aluminum siding is a low maintenance alternative. No painting, staining or caulking required. There used to be a problem with fading and chalking, but vinyl or plastic liners are now available, at a higher cost. Drawbacks to aluminum siding include dents, noise, and the fact that you can’t have such intricate detail. Today there is almost an endless style of aluminum siding, including vertical, horizontal, and simulated wood shingles. The fancier the product, the generally higher the cost.

There’s a reason vinyl siding is so prevalent. It is a very low cost, low maintenance alternative to wood and aluminum siding. It usually doesn’t dent like aluminum siding will. It’s also available in at least as many styles and colors as aluminum siding. One drawback is that there are few vinyl products on the market that are as aesthetically appealing as wood or aluminum. However, it’s still an attractive home and there are plenty of good quality, low-cost vinyl products on the market, so don’t count it off the list.

Cement board is the latest addition to the world of cladding. Gives the look and feel of wood paneling without the need for maintenance. Because the board is infused with cement, it is not prone to rot or insect damage. Often this is the type of sheathing you would use to replace a missing asbestos shingle. Cement board is also the closest simulation to wood, but it can also be somewhat expensive since the product is relatively new. However, many manufacturers guarantee their cement board products for up to fifty years. It often comes primed and you can paint it like wood.

Value is a subjective measure and you will have to weigh the economic benefits against the aesthetic ones. One of the easiest ways to decide on a type is to eliminate the options you know you don’t want. For example, if low maintenance is the most important thing to you, you can immediately eliminate wood from your options. Or if you put a lot of value and beauty into your home, you can eliminate many of the aluminum options and perhaps some of the vinyl. Once you narrow it down to a few types, you can start looking at siding styles, colors, and orientation, whether it’s portrait or landscape. The more information you can determine and write down before looking at the options, the faster it will be to make the decision and eliminate the options that don’t fit your overall goals.

Once you’ve narrowed down to one type and style, you’ll want to get multiple quotes. There are companies that sell siding, companies that install siding, and companies that do both. You will need to determine if the particular siding you want comes from a company that only sells siding or if they have to install it as well. If the siding you want comes from a company that also installs it, but the cost of installing it is too high for your budget, you may want to see if they’ll give you a quote for materials alone. This way, you can get an installer that fits your budget. Two caveats here: Keep in mind that a company that continually installs your particular siding can do it faster and better than an outside contractor that installs multiple types of siding, not the same one each time. Also, you may be able to find a siding type similar or identical to the one you wanted from the company that didn’t fit your budget. Be sure to do your research and look for the best value. It is important to know what you are looking for in advance. Don’t let a seller talk you into a type or style of siding that you’re not interested in putting on your home. Imagine the feeling you will have driving home every day. What coating gives it that “warm fuzzy” (both from a value standpoint and from an aesthetic standpoint)? That is the product for you.

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