Home Siding 101

The siding on your Kitsap home serves many purposes – it of course helps protect the structure of your home from the elements, but it can also help you maintain a steady internal temperature, create curb appeal and can possibly add value.

When considering maintenance or updates to your home, it’s worthwhile to put a critical eye to your home’s exterior to determine if it needs maintenance, repair or replacement. Loose stones/boards, chipped and flaking paint, mildew, warping, and pitting/holes are all items to look for. Depending on how much you find, it may be time to repaint, reseal, or even replace your siding. Below are some factors to consider when evaluating which direction to take, and if replacing, how to choose the right option for you.

  • What are your short- and long-term plans for your home? Will you stay in the property for many years, or do you plan to sell your home in the near future? These questions paired with the current condition of your siding are considerations when choosing repair vs replacement. If you plan to stay in your home for many years, repair may be a more cost-effective option unless you have a specific goal in mind such as increased insulation. If you’re thinking about selling, you may want to replace very worn/damaged siding now to increase curb appeal and overcome objections before they arise. Or, you may decide to clean things up as best as possible and plan to negotiate at inspection. Just remember that unless your new siding is a significant upgrade (e.g. standard vinyl to HardiePlank), replacing siding is considered maintenance rather than an upgrade and does not add value.
  • How efficient is your siding? Are your heating/cooling bills high? The efficiency of your siding may be a factor. If your current siding is allowing air to escape more than is necessary, this can cause your systems to run more to keep the temperature inside where you want it. You may want to consider insulated vinyl or siding with an Energy Star rating – these types of improvements can offer lower energy bills and increased comfort while you’re in the home, and may up your home’s “sellability” down the line.
  • What will the cost of maintenance be? This is a big one! When considering repair vs replacement of your current siding, think about how much it costs to maintain. If your siding is nearing the end of its lifespan, how much additional time will your maintenance buy you? If the answer isn’t much, it may be wiser to go ahead and replace. Additionally when you consider a new option, those recurring maintenance costs should be factored in. For instance traditional wood planks are lovely, but require regular resealing and/or repainting. Be sure to look into what type of maintenance the siding requires and if it’s in your monetary (and time) budget to undertake that maintenance as the years go on.
  • How will the siding look? Making sure you choose a style that adds curb-appeal to your home isn’t only a factor in selling, but also in the everyday enjoyment of your home. Choosing a siding that doesn’t fit the style of your home, that doesn’t fit your taste, or that you can’t repaint may turn home sweet home into your own personal nightmare. Be sure to account for the visual appeal of your siding in addition to the cost and function to make sure you end up with something you truly love that will also hopefully be appealing to future buyers.
  • Will my siding boost my home’s resale value? As mentioned previously, siding is mostly considered regular home maintenance, so unless you select a big upgrade it usually won’t increase your home’s value for resale purposes. For true upgrades you can typically expect to recoup about 50% of the cost of your project in your sales price, though this will vary by your siding choice and how long it’s been since you upgraded.

For a deep dive into different types and materials, check out SidingCost.org‘s pros and cons list of different siding types based on 2019 data. If you do undertake a re-siding project and you are disposing of old vinyl siding, it may be easy to recycle to reduce environmental impact. Check out this brief write-up from Consumer Reports for more information.

If you’re weighing out your options with selling your Kitsap home in mind, don’t hesitate to reach out to one of our experienced real estate brokers who can help you put together a pre-listing to-do list and provide advice on which items to do in advance and which to wait on!

Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

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