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Curb Appeal7 min

The Do’s and Don’ts of Re-Siding a Historic Home

Choosing what siding to install can be an enemy of old houses. Siding an old house in vinyl or aluminum can mask serious moisture problems. Siding installation may eliminate trim and other distinctive aesthetic elements that create the uniqueness that historic homes are known for. If you are considering the purchase of a historic home, or you already are the proud owner of a local historical gem, use caution when it comes to siding. 

Don’t Do These Things

  • Don’t cover a historic home with vinyl or aluminum siding. Vinyl siding is touted as a “no maintenance” product. While it’s true that vinyl itself does not require care, the problem is that vinyl siding does not allow an old house to breathe due to the unknown factor in moisture resistance in historic homes. When rain seeps in or interior water vapor can’t escape due to poor ventilation, moisture becomes trapped behind the vinyl and slowly rots the underlying wood. This is also an invitation for termite infestation – but you’ll never know about these problems because they will be completely hidden by sheets of vinyl or aluminum.

  • Don’t remove architectural details. The details of a historic home are usually unique to the home. Never allow a contractor to rip off wood window surrounds and other architectural components to make the siding process easier. These items are irreplaceable and add great value to your home.
  • Don’t try to make a historic home look new. A big part of the attraction to old homes is that they are made of natural materials that create character. Trying to make a historic home look “like new” will eliminate the authentic charm that makes it so special!

Do These Things

  • Determine if a home is subject to local protective legislation. If your local municipality has designated a home as a historic property, there are likely preservation ordinances in place that govern design guidelines and procedures for proposed alterations to it. These are meant to preserve architectural character and protect your long-term investment. Before making any home improvements, contact your local historic board or the National Register of Historic Places.
  • Choose siding that can be painted. Color is a unique feature of old houses, and homes are often repainted when they change ownership.

Define a Home with LP® SmartSide® Trim & Siding Products

When you’re looking for a viable alternative to traditional wood siding that still offers the beautiful aesthetics of wood, consider LP SmartSide engineered wood trim and siding. LP’s SmartGuard® manufacturing process gives LP SmartSide products strength and durability. Zinc borate is distributed throughout the wood substrate to resist termites, the strands or fiber are bonded together using waxes and advanced resins created specifically for exterior use. LP SmartSide products are available in both smooth and cedar texture finishes, and in a variety of profiles for greater design flexibility.

Contact an LP® BuildSmart Preferred Contractor in your area to discuss whether LP SmartSide engineered siding would be a good fit for your historic home.

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Trends4 min

Everything You Need to Know About Board & Batten Siding

Board and batten style siding is enjoying a resurgence as a way to create visual interest in an otherwise blank wall. So, what is “board and batten?” It’s a type of siding where thin strips of wood molding—or “battens”—are placed over the seams of panel boards. The result is an aesthetic that is both rustic and chic, with the strong vertical lines providing shadows and textures to the home exterior.

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Renovation5 min
Homeowner’s Guide to Remodeling a Historic Home

The story behind your home offers a fascinating glimpse into the people who lived in it as well as how your home fits into the larger story of your city. If you want to remodel your historic home’s exterior, experts advise visiting your local historic preservation commission. If your home lies within the historic overlay district, these commissions often have authority to set rules not only on the visual aesthetic, but the materials as well.

Trends3 min
Mixing Siding with Different Exterior Textures

Mixing different types of siding can give your home individuality and visual appeal, but it can also be difficult to execute correctly without guidance. While some homeowners mix materials to create a contemporary look, others already have a mixed materials home exterior that needs an update. We’re breaking down practical tips to pair exterior materials for a beautiful home.

Maintenance3 min
When to Replace Old, Decaying Siding

Fungal decaying siding can cause a multitude of problems such as improperly heating and cooling your home and even compromising its structure. Many times, fungal decay is hidden and homeowners may not know how to spot the warning signs. And if they do, it can be difficult to gauge whether it’s time for a siding replacement or repair. But have no fear. We’re offering an in-depth guide on the signs to spot fungal decay and, more importantly, what to do next.