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How to Find the Right Siding for Your Home and Budget

Five Tips to Help You Get Started

Choice Paralysis has been part of an ongoing conversation over the last few decades around the plethora of options available to consumers. I’ve heard it most often referenced in relation to the grocery store. Too many orange juices to choose from, so customers leave without any orange juice at all. The premise behind the term is that it’s not always freedom of choice that consumers want but freedom from choice instead.

With modern additions in the siding world it’s easy enough to make the leap from the orange juice aisle to the sample station. There’s modern vinyl, fiber cement, and composite. Within those product types there are different manufacturers, and within those manufacturers there are lines with thousands of colors, textures, sizes, and style options. There’s also trim work to consider. And what about considerations outside of aesthetics? Like cost, durability, performance, and maintenance?

At Marshall, our Free Consultations are always there to guide you through this process, but if you’re looking to do some research before then, here are five tips to help you get started.

Cost

Siding obviously covers a lot of your home, so it’s an important decision. It’s also a long-lasting product, so it will be with you for a long time. To get the look that meets your budget, it’s a good idea to do some research, ask questions, and get a price from trusted contractor. It’s impossible to plan for what you don’t know. Even with project start dates that are further away, we recommend getting a price as a starting point. Next, factor in the ROI. Siding has a high return when it’s installed correctly. You should also consider potential savings on energy bills. It’s typically an investment that pays.

To dig a little deeper. Fiber cement often has a higher price point than vinyl. Composite falls somewhere between the two. Ask your contractor about price locks so you don’t end up with price increases after the project has started. and check on what financing options are available. At Marshall it’s our easy payment options take soft pull on your credit (meaning it’s not negatively impacted) and we can often get an answer back within minutes with great rates. Lastly, consider warranties. Part of thinking about the cost of the project is also about thinking about project longevity, which will get to next, and that means good warranties are part of the cost analysis.

Durability

The lifespan of any product plays a significant role in your planning. Vinyl is often estimated to last around 30 years. Fiber Cement comes in somewhere around 50 years (but it requires more care than vinyl). Composite requires less upkeep than fiber cement and warranties come in with different timespans depending on the manufacturer. Fade resistant warranties are lasting longer than ever before with modern technology. Of course the biggest factor in this consideration is the installation. None of these products will perform for their lifetime if they aren’t installed properly. Look into the different kinds of warranties available and what they cover. Consider the difference between a manufacturer’s warranty and a workmanship warranty. A good company will not only offer you what the manufacturer offers but also a warranty that backs their own installation.

Aesthetics

Speaking of installation, let’s talk aesthetics. Industry insiders know that the difference between good and great siding installs rely on the crew’s ability to shape the trim. Ever looked at an old siding job and noticed immediately that something was up with the trim around the windows? It’s likely your eye was picking up on an old school practice. With modern technology, trim work has come so far over the last two decades. A good installer can give you the look and details you want (without the hassle of wood’s maintenance).

Color, texture, and style is the fun part. This is usually where the biggest choice paralysis takes place. We get it! Modern homeowners are choosing combinations of products to help enhance their home’s natural features. Colors and styles can be used to create contrast. Some homeowner’s opt to mimic a more traditional or historic look. Choices, choices, choices!

Some places to start? Think about your home’s roof color and consider the palette that works well alongside of it. If you’re replacing the roof, think about the home in relation to a color palette. Drive around and see what catches your eye. What homes are you drawn to? What do you like about them? Take notes and pictures to help you think through your own design. Our consultants are also available to help you with these decisions.

Weather

Local companies are best for a number of reasons but one of the biggest reasons in New England is understanding siding products in relation to the weather. Different kinds of siding respond differently to cold, moisture, heat, and other weather-related damage. Proper installation that takes this into consideration helps prevent issues down that road. Beyond the aesthetic impact this can have, it’s important to consider moisture protection, heat retention, wind damage, ice damage and whatever else Mother Nature might throw our way. A local company with years of experience can help minimize the impact weather will have on your remodel. This is another great place to think about the warranties you’re being offered.

Maintenance

One of the biggest benefits of siding is its low maintenance. Different types require different levels of care. Fiber Cement will need to be painted less than wood but more often than vinyl. Composite will require cleaning to maintain its better-than-new look. Vinyl’s UV protection will compare differently to that of Fiber Cement’s and Composite’s. What about repairs? If there is a wind storm and a piece blows off, how will the company you’re working with handle a replacement panel? What is the cost? How will they prioritize smaller service calls? At Marshall, we have a full time service department should any issues arise. We offer a 15-year workmanship warranty in addition to the manufacturer’s warranty. This means we’ve got your home covered for at least that long.

“Freedom of” or “Freedom from”

Whether you are the type of person who loves the freedom of choice or the type who wants freedom from choice, Marshall has you covered. Our consultations are meant to educate homeowner’s on the best options for their home and budget. Our consultants are also trained to guide you in the right direction to whatever degree you need. Whether that means guardrails on good product fit, help with color palettes, or a conversation about warranties and proper installation practices, we are there to walk you through it. We can give you the freedom of choice while also providing freedom from pressure.

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