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Homeowners want the best for their houses, including the perfect siding option. The right siding adds to a home’s market value and helps in keeping upkeep to a minimum. A great choice but often-overlooked siding material is cement board.

What is Cement Siding?

This type of siding is made of cement, sand, fly ash and cellulose fibers. The fibers, made of wood, help to hold the siding materials together. This is the only type of house siding that contains cement material.

Types of Cement Siding

Cement boards are sold in mostly horizontal boards, however cement board sheets can be purchased for a varying siding look. Board sheets are often used for commercial purposes. Another option is shingles, however they are more difficult to apply.  Lap siding proves to be the most popular type, with boards measuring from 5 to 12 inches, creating an overlapping effect. If looking for the most highly recommended siding, fiber cement is the best option due to the pressure process used in making it. Cement sidings are sold in varying thicknesses, with the thinner having a rougher edge, but being easier to apply due to less weight. Most manufacturers sell the boards in as many as 22 various colors.

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With different types and varying colors, cement siding provides variety for a homeowner. Due to its cement content, fire tests prove this type of siding to be the most fire-resistant. Although any material will burn, this type of siding is slow burning and allows a home’s residents time to put the fire out to get out safely. Cement siding also offers some of the best bug resistance, thus reducing the cost for expensive home exterminators for outside pests. This type of siding resembles wood, so those wanting a wood finish might prefer cement siding. Another benefit of this type of siding option is the fact that it can be painted. If 22 colors are not enough, homeowners have the option of painting the siding. Due to its thickness, cement is long-lasting and sturdy.

Cons

Many people find this type of siding difficult to apply. It is heavier than most, often requiring 2 people to place the siding. If not handled properly, pieces of the cement siding may break off. This siding costs more than most siding to apply, so may not be a wise option for those on a budget. If the siding is applied professionally, homeowners might find it to cost more due to the difficulty of application.

To see how much siding costs to install on your home, check out SidingMagazine.com’s Siding Calculator to get rough estimates online.

4. Cement Board Siding Installation (and trim)

Installation of siding, trim and finishes

  • Next begins the installation of the chosen trim products and the fiber cement siding clapboard or shingles product.
  • Typically stainless steel nails are specifed.
  • It’s best to use full runs, (long pieces of clapboards), as much as possible to minimize seams for better apearance and longevity.
  • If contracted to do so, the final step in the siding process is to apply a high-quality, paint for a beautiful, long-lasting finish.

5. Site Clean-Up:

  • Light clean-up should be performed daily
  • Thorugh clean-up should be done at job completion
  • All supplies and rubbish should be removed
  • Outdoor fixtures and furniture are replaced
  • Several pieces of clapboards or shingles are left for future use

6. Installation Inspection:

  • Schedule a time to do a walk around and installalation inspection on one of the last days.

7. Warrantee:

  • Receive clear written documentation of any warranty both material and installation for your siding project.

For years real estate agents and property professionals have been telling sellers to put more money into their kitchens and baths because it would give them the biggest return on their investment. It may have been true in the past but what does today’s data tell us? There is a chance you may not have even heard of this product yet thousands of your neighbors in New England are benefiting from it.

According to Realtor.org/Realtor Magazine, in 2008 Major Kitchen remodels did make the top ten list on their annual Cost vs. Value report but the number one improvement you can make to your house and receive the biggest return on your investment is upscale fiber cement siding. Homeowners nationally received a return of almost 87% on every dollar spent. This does not include the aesthetic value, and immeasurable value of having a low-maintenance exterior. You may be asking yourself, “What is Fiber Cement Siding?” Don’t be embarrassed. If you are living in New England, you have not been exposed to this product as frequently as the rest of the nation. However, thousands of your neighbors locally are replacing their failing vinyl, aluminum and wood siding with fiber cement siding.

Homeowners simply love this product! Here are just a few of the benefits of fiber cement siding when installed properly by a professionally trained and certified contractor:

  • Termites cannot eat through it
  • Woodpeckers won’t peck at it
  • You receive a 30-year product warranty
  • It is an environmentally friendly green product made partially with recycled materials

With today’s financial uncertainty, the best thing homeowners can do is make sure their homes are well kept and updated. Fiber cement siding replacement is a great way to improve the value of your house whether you are planning on selling or if you plan on holding on to the property for the next 30 years.