Someone suggested a series of blogs about Tom’s favorite remodeling projects that really pay off not only from a return on enjoyment but also protect the investment you have in your home. Here goes.
With all the options available today in materials, styles, colors, and architectural trim and accessories, one no longer slaps up some siding and says we’re done. You can create a personality for the home’s exterior that is all your own. You have the ability to treat your home’s exterior just as you would design the interior. You now have the versatility to achieve any architectural style imaginable.
Enjoyment value is highest upon job completion and the most common echo heard throughout the day is “I am so glad we did this.” Enjoyment comes from knowing the home is more comfortable, there is very little or no maintenance, and the beauty just created is going to last a lifetime. Protection value comes from the peace of mind you receive in manufacturer warranties and company workmanship warranties. Increased curb appeal adds to that protection value especially at time of resale.
Materials include vinyl siding, insulated vinyl siding, polymeric decorative sidings, fiber cement siding, LP Smartside (engineered wood), fiberglass siding, natural wood and manufactured stone/brick sidings.
I have always said while it is not necessary in all cases, tearing off the existing siding makes for a better installation. Some form of rigid board insulation is installed under the siding, with Tyvek HouseWrap an additional option. Tyvek is installed under all insulated vinyl siding installations. Added insulation increases comfort and reduces energy bills.
The polymeric (vinyl family) decorative sidings include the distinctive styles of both straight edge and staggered edge “perfection cedar shingles” or “rough handsplit cedar shakes” in five, seven, and nine inch widths. The look of half-round shingles is also available and makes a perfect finishing touch for the home.
Fiber cement and LP Smartside also offer the look of shake shingle sidings.
Other common styles include horizontal lap sidings, vertical sidings, beaded sidings, and dutch-lap sidings. All come in multiple widths and heights. Manufactured stone and brick sidings come in a variety of styles and colors and add a wonderful detail at an entrance way or lower portion of the home, most commonly at the front of the home.
Color availability is widespread in all siding materials but especially so in vinyl, and prefinished fiber cement and LP Smartside. Vinyl colors are available across the color spectrum in light, mid-range, and dark colors. Creating an eye-appealing color combination for your home is made much easier with the computer aided design and color software available. The color technology used today also provides much greater color retention and fade resistance.
I have often said “the little details make the biggest difference.” With the wide variety of architectural trim and accessories today, this statement rings truer than ever. You can match about any accessory or trim product in a low maintenance material. The detail can be a wide outside corner post, using light blocks for all fixtures, an outlet cover, a crown molding over a window, a gable vent, or a pair of shutters on the windows. The detail can be a flower box below a window, a door mantel, or a beaded vinyl wainscot. The detail can be an eye-pleasing color combination.
The point of this blog besides the daily enjoyment value you receive and the payoff from the protection value is “Imagination.” Take in everything you can learn about designing (siding) the exterior of your home and let your imagination do the rest.