There is a lot to consider when choosing new siding. After all, this material is going to cover the majority of your home’s exterior. You will have to look at it every time you go outside, and your guests will notice it every time they come over. However, design is not all that matters. Living in Minnesota, where we experience extreme weather in every season, demands a lot more than beauty from a home’s siding.
What is the best siding for a home? Well, there isn’t one straight answer to that question, but we can guide you through the decision-making process to find the right choice for your home. Let’s unpack the top five factors to consider when shopping for siding.
Your Siding Choice Matters
Siding protects your home from the elements, defines its appearance, and is a determining factor in its value. To give consumers more stylish options, manufacturers have started combining traditional styles and materials with new technology to create far more efficient versions of old siding types. While these new options offer a more comprehensive range of choices, they also make your decision more difficult because there are so many strong contenders.
Types of Siding
To help put the important factors into perspective for you, we’ll explain a little bit about each of the most popular siding types on the market right now. When you shop for new siding, you can expect to see the following options:
- Vinyl Siding: A durable plastic siding used for its visually pleasing and weatherproofing properties. Vinyl siding comes in many colors and textures, it’s durable, and it’s low maintenance.
- Wood Siding: A natural wood siding is workable, warm, and beautiful. It comes in many species, grades, and finishes. It’s very high maintenance and can be quite expensive.
- Fiber Cement Siding: Made of wood pulp, cement, clay, and sand, fiber cement siding can be made to mimic wood siding, stucco siding, and masonry. It’s durable and low-maintenance.
- Engineered Wood Siding: Made of wood fibers and resins, engineered wood siding can withstand the harshest weather conditions. It comes in various styles and textures and is cheaper than fiber cement and real wood.
- Steel Siding: Its natural strength and durability make steel siding an excellent value. It comes in a variety of beautiful styles and colors.
- Stucco: Extremely durable and stylish, stucco is a great way to add character to a home. Installation is not a DIY job.
- Synthetic Stone: Made from a mixture of cement, sand, and aggregate, then poured into molds, synthetic stone can mimic whatever type of stone you want it to, including granite and limestone. The latest manufacturing techniques allow the result to be realistic every time.
Top 5 Factors to Consider When Choosing Siding
As you begin to research siding options, set a budget. Siding cost varies widely, so it’s important to go into the process with a realistic budget. With that said, some siding options cost more but offer lower maintenance costs and a higher ROI. When you secure estimates from residential siding contractors, make sure you ask about warranties. A great warranty on a quality product that costs a little more may turn out to be worth the extra money in the end.
Here are some critical questions to consider as you create your budget:
- Is it new or replacement siding? Additional costs may come up for repair.
- Is the old siding repairable? Quality contractors won’t push you to replace if you don’t need to.
- What does your house look like? Odd shapes create more corners, eaves, etc., which make installation harder and more expensive.
How strong does your siding need to be? Will your house experience snow and ice storms? Extreme cold? Extreme heat? Hail? Tornadoes? In Minnesota, you need to be prepared for all of these and more. Picking out siding is usually a one-time deal, so choosing siding that is durable enough for your climate is essential.
Siding’s R-value represents its energy-efficiency. The higher the siding’s R-value, the better insulation it will provide. As you do your homework, make sure you’re checking up on this number. If you choose a material with a low R-value, you’ll need more insulation beneath it.
Maintenance is possibly the most critical factor to consider next to the price. What is your tolerance for exterior home care and maintenance? Each siding material demands a different level of maintenance. Consider what types of siding need repainting and resealing and what types just need a yearly cleaning. Understanding your limits will help you make the right choice. Don’t buy siding that you aren’t willing to maintain. It will result in damage and diminished appearance.
Siding is a defining factor in your home’s curb appeal, which can make it feel like an overwhelming choice. Whether you have something special in mind, you need help with color coordination, or anything else, talk to your contractor. If you love the look of wood but can’t afford it or don’t want a high maintenance product, you still have other options. Fiber cement and engineered wood siding are both great wood alternatives. Whatever you envision for your home, rest assured, there is siding available to match any style.
Do You Need New Siding?
Whether you’re building a new home or need to replace your old siding, there is a lot to consider as you sift through your options. Begin your process by considering these five factors, and you’ll be well on your way to finding the right siding for your home. Do you need a little inspiration to get you going? View our ‘Before and After’ project gallery to envision how your home can be improved.
At Principles Building & Remodeling, we take pride in what we do. We are an honest, local company, and our main objective is to serve our community. Visit our website to learn more about our siding repair, replacement, and installation services, or contact us today.