siding

November 24, 2014

How to Choose Siding for Your New Home

How to Choose Siding for Your New Home

Choosing siding for your new home or updating siding at your current residence is an important decision. Several factors determine what kind of siding you choose. Read more to learn about some common issues that affect a homeowner’s choices for home siding installation.

Cost

The initial cost of siding installation is critical because you don’t want to commit to a project that is outside of your budget. Some of the more expensive siding choices include brick and stone, which require costly materials and installation procedures. If you’re trying to save money, vinyl siding installation costs and fiber cement siding costs are cheaper alternatives to more expensive options.

Maintenance

Some types of siding require regular maintenance to keep up their appearance. Wood siding is especially vulnerable to changes in weather and requires preparation for winter as well as regular coats of paint and caulking. This can be a lot of work for the homeowner, and you should be prepared to invest time and money if you choose wood siding. If you’re looking for an easier option that requires less upkeep, try vinyl or brick siding. Vinyl siding is low maintenance because it doesn’t require painting and is water resistant. It’s also cheaper than other types of siding. If you choose brick siding, expect to wash it a few times a year, but otherwise it’s maintenance requirements are minimal.

Durability

When considering house siding installation options, consider the lifetime of various types. Vinyl siding can last up to 40 years, which can be valuable if you don’t want to replace the siding often. Brick and stone siding will usually last the lifetime of the home, but this benefit is partially offset by the cost of siding installation. Wood siding can last from 10 to 100 years, and its durability is highly dependent on how well it is maintained.

Aesthetics

This is the first thing many people consider when they are choosing siding for their home. Think about the architecture and style of your home, and from there you can choose what siding complements it. Cottage and bungalow homes look good with wood siding, brick is often used for colonial style homes, and stucco suits a Mediterranean theme. Vinyl siding is common and will allow your home to blend in, while stone adds texture and will add a unique appeal to your property. Make sure to check for any requirements in your neighborhood that may restrict what types of siding you are allowed to install.

Resale Value

This is closely connected with durability and the initial cost of siding installation. If you invest now you will likely see a greater return when you sell your home.

Staff Writer (2014 November 11) How to Choose Siding for Your New Home. Retrieved on November 17, 2014 from housekillers.com

October 10, 2014

Siding buying guide

Siding buying guide



Getting started

New siding is one of the most visible ways to give your home a makeover now and make it easier to sell later. And siding isn’t just decorative: Loose or cracked panels or shingles can allow entry to moisture and insects, leading to expensive structural damage. What’s more, performance can vary significantly between and even within types. Use this guide to find a replacement.

Our tests have found significant differences by type and brand–and even within the same brand. Some siding is far less resistant to cracking from impacts in warm and cold weather, an especially important consideration for active families with children. And some is less likely to stay put in a wind storm, based on our simulated 150-mph winds. We’ve also found that some vinyl siding–still the best-selling kind–is more prone to fading under ultraviolet light, especially important in sunny climates and where trees don’t provide much shade.

The thickest and most expensive vinly siding tended to perform best in our tests, although several thinner and less expensive products did almost as well. While you’ll often pay more for the strongest, longest-lived vinyl, we’ve found some very good products can cost far less yet perform nearly as well. Vinyl, plastic, and other synthetic materials are also getting much more realistic: Thanks to better graining and deeper profiles that cast wider shadows, some vinyl siding looks much more like wood for a small fraction of what you’d pay for the real thing. Check under Types to determine which material–vinyl, plastic, fiber cement, or wood–best suits your taste and budget.

Buy the right amount

An installer will calculate how much siding your home needs, but you can make a rough estimate without climbing a ladder–and avoid overpaying someone you hire. Simply multiply the height times the width of each rectangular section of your house in feet, going by what you can measure from the ground, to determine its area. Multiply the approximate height and width of gables and other triangular surfaces and divide each total by two. Then add all the totals. To allow for waste, don’t subtract for doors, windows, or other areas that won’t be covered. Finally, divide the total square footage by 100 to estimate how many squares of siding you’ll need.

Get it installed right

We recommend having a professional install your siding. If the old siding is sound, new siding can go over it. But rotted wood siding should be replaced and the wall behind it checked for damage–something that could save you tens of thousands of dollars in structural repairs later on. If the old siding is removed, have a moisture barrier installed beneath the new siding, and add flashing around doors and windows. Fasteners should attach to wall studs, not just the sheathing. The installer should center the fasteners in the slots and leave a gap as thick as a dime between the panel and the fastener heads to allow for expansion and contraction.

Make it last

You can extend the useful life of your siding with simple maintenance and repairs. Siding is susceptible to leaks, especially where it meets windows and doors. A $5 tube of caulk could ultimately save you thousands of dollars in structural repairs. If you live in a region with cold winters, check the siding under the eaves for water stains, possibly a sign of ice damming. Adding attic insulation and sealing any gaps around pipes and ducts into the attic may help prevent future damming–and may lower your heating and cooling bills as well.

Types

Weigh the look you like against upkeep and cost. Prices listed are per square (100 square feet). Figure on 20 squares and $1,800 to $4,000 in labor for a typical 2,300-square-foot house. Here are the types of siding to consider.

Vinyl

vinyl sidingLow price and minimal upkeep make vinyl by far the most popular siding material. Vinyl needs no painting. It won’t warp or twist, and it’s impervious to insects and water. But it can rattle, crack, melt, and burn. Some vinyl products may look like wood from a distance, but not up close. Before you settle on vinyl, consider whether your taste or the architecture of your neighborhood makes the added realism and cost of plastic, fiber cement, or even real wood a more appropriate choice.

Plastic

plastic sidingThese shingles and shakes can closely resemble cedar, even up close. Plastic, like vinyl, requires minimal upkeep. Though less rigid than vinyl, it resists impact better in cold weather.

Fiber cement

fiber cementThis blend of cement, sand, and cellulose looks the most like real wood. Fiber-cement siding is insect-proof, but water can damage it during freezes and thaws. Whether primed or pre-painted, fiber cement must be refinished periodically, though less often than wood.

Wood

woodAlthough wood shingles and clapboard offer traditional charm, they’re very expensive. Wood is resistant to impact, but it can warp, twist, and burn. And it’s vulnerable to rot, insects, and woodpeckers. Wood can be finished or left natural, and it’s available primed or painted. If it’s painted or stained, it requires periodic refinishing.

When installing siding, there are some features to consider that can enhance the appearance and durability. Here are the siding features to consider.

Deep profile

On clapboard-style vinyl, a profile that’s raised an inch or more deepens shadow lines, making the siding look more like wood. It’s also likely to be more rigid and less wavy when installed.

Double-hem nailing area

The best vinyl siding has a double-layer mounting hem, which provides stronger attachment and better resistance to high winds than does a single-layer hem.

Extra-long panels

Some vinyl siding comes in 16-foot or longer lengths to reduce the number of seams on long, unbroken walls.

Finish

For fiber cement, consider whether the added color choices and cost savings of painting it yourself outweigh the longer durability of a factory finish.

Foam backing

Besides making vinyl siding more rigid, foam backing adds insulation.

Staff Writer (2013 October) Siding buying guide. Retrieved on September 5, 2014 from Consumerreports.org

July 25, 2014

Exterior Remodeling Offers Largest Return on Investment in 2014!

For those homeowners who are looking to take advantage of the sellers market to obtain a profit on a property, exterior remodeling is one of the best ways to increase leverage. People today are looking for houses with curb appeal, and if you have one, then you should be able to move it quickly at a premium price.

Some of the more cost-effective, high ROI exterior modeling projects are as follows:

Siding – Getting your siding done adds a look of luxury to any home. For those buyers who are looking for the details, it is very important. It shows that you care for the house and that you are not only trying to sell it by making huge, ornate changes or distracting people with a good staging effort.

Replacement windows – It has been proven that one of the first things that buyers look at when judging the health of a home are the windows. Replacement windows are relatively inexpensive and can give you a great first impression.

Garage doors – Your garage is a large, easily visible part of your home that everyone will check out. Get the doors done so that you will make a good impression for your buyers.

Decks – A great deck will attract a higher quality of buyer, especially if you’re looking for a family. Having a good deck make sure home more move-in ready, which will appeal to people who do not have the time to purchase a fixer-upper. The more comfortable you can make buyers feel immediately, the more likely that they are to give you a premium for the home.

Patio – Similar to the decks, the patio is the place in which your families will be spending most of their time. Make it look good, and you will certainly reap the rewards in the buying price.

Front door – This should be self-explanatory. The first thing that your buyers will see will be your front door. Do not give them the opportunity to cross your home off of the list before they even step inside because of cracking wood and misplaced joints in your door.

March 7, 2014

Top 10 Home Improvement Projects


If you’re thinking of selling your home in 2014 or just want to ramp up your home value, it’s important to educate yourself on which improvement projects will bring you the most return on your investment.

A great resource for your research is the “2014 Cost vs. Value Report,” an annual collaboration between Remodeling magazine and REALTOR® Magazine, which breaks down the estimated cost of various remodeling projects and the estimated return on investment for those projects by region and by city, as well as by midrange and upscale projects. In general, this year’s report shows that exterior replacement projects are the most cost-effective. If you plan to sell your home later this year, remember that the first impression your home makes on buyers is their first glimpse of the outside.

Here are 10 home improvement projects you should consider:

1. Replace Your Front Door

You may not even notice your front door anymore, especially if you regularly use another entrance, but a new steel front door makes a great impression on buyers and yields an amazing 96.6 percent return on your investment. If your front door doesn’t need replacing or you?d rather spend less money, you can paint it and replace the hardware for a similar impact.

2. Add a Deck or Patio

No matter where you live, buyers want outdoor living space. You can recoup 87 percent of your investment on a new wood deck. If you already have outdoor space, consider sprucing it up with a water feature, an outdoor fireplace, or new landscaping.

3. Add Space/Attic Bedroom

Depending on your budget and your goals for your home, an addition of extra bedrooms and bathrooms, a finished attic or an expanded casual living space can rapidly increase the value of your home. You can recoup 84% of your investment in a new attic bedroom.

4. Replace Your Garage Door

An upscale or midrange garage door recoups 83 percent of your investment. Manufacturers offer a host of styles and choices, from plain steel panel doors to energy-efficient, insulated models with glass windows.

5. Remodel Your Kitchen

Buyers look most carefully at kitchens and bathrooms, so you should, too. You can recoup 82 percent of a minor kitchen remodel and 74 percent of a major kitchen remodel. If you’re selling soon, don’t overspend on your kitchen. You may be able to do a couple of relatively minor fixes, such as replacing the appliances and painting the cabinets, or just replacing the counters with granite to garner a good offer.

6. Replace Your Windows

Buyers are interested in how your windows look and their energy efficiency. Whether you’re replacing vinyl- or wood-frame windows, you can get a 79 percent return on your investment. When you’re ready to market your home, be sure to highlight the new windows as a selling point.

7. Replace Your Siding

If your home’s exterior needs a major makeover, you can typically recoup 78 percent of your investment by replacing vinyl siding. If you replace your siding

with a fiber-cement mix, you can recoup a whopping 87% of your costs.

8. Basement Addition/Remodel

These days, it’s all about space for entertaining. Recoup 78 percent of your investment by adding or remodeling a basement. Finish the lower level of a house to create a 20-by-30-foot entertaining area with wet bar and a full bathroom.

9. Update Your Bathroom

While a full, upscale bathroom remodel project can cost over $50,000 and add only about $32,000 to your home’s resale value, you can make cost-effective minor upgrades. Get a 73 percent return on your investment with these bathroom upgrades: Replace your fixtures and your mirror, repaint the space and jazz it up with some crown molding (depending on your home’s style) and you?ll have a space that looks new. While you’re there, redo the caulk around your tub and shower and replace the grout on your tile flooring. If your tub is in bad shape, you may be able to have it resurfaced rather than replace it.

10. Two-Story Addition

For a 72 percent return on investment, add a first-floor family room and a second-floor bedroom with full bathroom in over a crawlspace. You can add a new HVAC system to handle the addition, and electrical wiring to code.

Lerner Michele (2013 January 21)Top 10 Home Improvement Projects Retrieved on March 3, 2014 From Realtor.com

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November 29, 2013

ALTERNATIVE SIDING OPTIONS

Take a closer look at a few alternative siding options, all of which will help ease the burden on your wallet.[/caption]

For today’s homebuilder there are many siding options that won’t break their budgets. Engineered wood and cultured stone are two, but perhaps the most common low-cost siding option is vinyl.

“One of the biggest siding or exterior cladding system choices now is vinyl,” said John Broniek, manager of builder programs at IBACOS. “It’s very popular, especially for production homes. You have many colors, it’s very durable, low maintenance, which people appreciate.”

For those of you who like the look of wood, vinyl siding is a perfect alternative because it captures the distinctive look of wood — but at a lower cost.

Like vinyl siding, fiber-cement siding is another material that’s becoming more popular with homeowners and builders alike. This new innovation is basically cement board, which can look like regular vinyl or wood siding. The only difference is that it’s made with cement-type material, and when you put it on your house it can last for decades — with little maintenance required. Most manufacturers have at least 50-year warranties, and it’s a durable product that installs as easily as regular siding.

Note: Vinyl and fiber-cement siding can cost up to 25 percent “less” than high-end siding options such as brick, wood and stone.

Low-Cost Siding Drawbacks

Like all siding materials, some of these low-cost alternatives have drawbacks. For example, fiber-cement siding is much heavier than traditional siding options and needs some moisture barrier underneath to ensure its waterproof qualities. Exterior building products aren’t 100 percent watertight. In fact, water will get around them somehow — either through them or around them at windows and doors. This means a secondary line of protection is necessary to protect the building that’s behind it.

A drawback of vinyl siding is that it doesn’t come in as many colors that can be painted on traditional wood.

How Long Will Siding Last?

Regardless of whether you’re using a high-end siding or low-cost alternative to cover your home’s exterior, you’ll want the siding to last as long as possible. The longevity depends upon two things:

The durability of the product.
How well the product is maintained.
Durability is an important quality of exterior building products, but it’s vital to remember that the materials will be exposed to the extent of what Mother Nature can throw at them in terms of wind, rain, sun, rain, snow and more. All exterior building materials will deteriorate over time.

You can make the building product last longer if you maintain it extremely well. Vinyl siding requires little maintenance, but wood siding requires much more. One of the easiest ways to ensure a longer life for your siding is to keep it clean.

With vinyl or stucco siding, cleaning is as simple as using a garden hose to wash it. With high-end options such as wood, you’ll need to have paint or a wood sealant applied by an installation professional or if you’re a do-it-yourselfer, you. Once the elements have worn through the out sealant, they’ll have to be replaced.

So after you’ve
chosen a material, make sure that your builder has purchased a siding that has a long-term warranty. And once you’ve moved into your home, remember to clean and repaint or reseal the siding on a regular basis.

DIYNetwork-Alternative Siding Options. Retrieved November 04, 2013 From DIYNetwork.

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August 28, 2013

Roofing Doylestown PA

Professionalism and Experience That You Can Trust.

When the time comes for roof work to be done on your home; Tri-County Exteriors is the company to call. We are the roofing contractors in PA that have been serving four counties in the Philadelphia area as well as southern New Jersey for more than three decades. We offer the highest quality service among Doylestown roofers and all other roofers in Bucks County.

Our services include both repair and installation of new roofs. Both small and large repairs are offered, so there is no reason for a home owner to endanger themselves by attempting a do-it-yourself repair. A professional roofer from Tri-County Exteriors can come to your home and give a free estimate for the repair. Have the work done quickly and professionally. Don’t think about doing this type of work yourself, as thousands of home owners are injured every year trying to do roof work. Needed roof repairs should be done as soon as possible. Small repairs can become big repairs as the damage becomes increasingly large. In addition, when the weather turns bad, a roof can leak requiring the need for expensive emergency repairs.

New roofs are also available and can be installed in several materials. Tri-County Exteriors can explain the different possibilities as well as the benefits of each and give an estimate for the cost of installation.

Along with quality and experience, what makes Tr-iCounty Exteriors so attractive is the range of services for the home owner. Along with roofing, they offer installation of siding. This can help bring down the cost of a home owner’s utilities and by using stone facing among other materials, the homes’ value can increase by giving it more curb appeal.

The windows and doors of a home can also be replaced if needed. Both of these can be a source of leaking hot air in the winter time, and a new door or window can help insulate a home better.

Tri-County Exteriors is also an excellent choice for residents of Doylestown PA who want to have a new deck installed for their patio. Available in wood or composite materials, there are several designs available that can be built quickly and professionally to make a patio more attractive and add value to a home.

Call Tri-County Exteriors today at 215-322-0110 to receive your FREE estimate!