There are several different materials on the market that are used in the construction of siding. Some materials have a lower initial purchase cost than others; however, maintenance and installation costs can affect the overall price tag associated with siding materials in the long run.
Wood, vinyl, steel, aluminum, brick, stucco and cultured stone are all types of materials used for siding. According to the Cost Helper website, the cheapest siding material is vinyl, followed by certain engineered woods such as plywood and hardwood sheets that are made up of wood bits and resins.
The associates at Cost Helper claim that 1,250 square feet of engineered woods can cost the consumer anywhere between $3,000 and $5,000 to have professionally installed. Vinyl siding can cost anywhere between $1 and $7 per square foot installed.
Both wood and vinyl siding can be installed by the homeowner with only a small level of difficulty. While it is recommended to leave the installation to the professionals, handy homeowners can significantly lower the cost of a siding project by doing the installation themselves.
Throughout the years, wood siding will incur more maintenance costs than vinyl siding. Unlike vinyl siding, wood siding requires painting or staining every couple of years. Both types of siding can last for several years if they are maintained properly.
Unlike vinyl siding, wood siding can promote mold and mildew growth if left untreated. Homes that utilize wood siding in humid climates should have fungicide or sealants applied to them every few years to discourage mold and mildew growth. Cost Helper recommends that oil finishes be applied to wood siding in dry climates.