If you own a home in a historic district, you can forget about replacing the existing siding with vinyl. Most historic districts require replacement siding to closely match the original, hence wood (or engineered wood) and brick. Understanding home building regulations based on historic overlays can help eliminate the headache during renovations, so it’s important to stay in the know before embarking on the project.
If your home is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, you’re required to use the same exterior material found on the original, e.g. logs to refurbish a historic log cabin. But most historic homes in the U.S. aren’t in the National Register. They’re governed by local historic societies, which have their own regulations for siding replacement. The first step is to speak with people at your local society—and in most cases, engineered wood is deemed a suitable replacement for the original wood siding.
“Our new LP® SmartSide® Smooth Siding has given us access to the historic areas in New Orleans, as their historic officials require a smooth siding product which our earlier wood-grain siding did not provide,” says Kip Faulk, LP channel manager for the Louisiana area. “We are now working with Saint Bernard Parish-USA, which was created after Hurricane Katrina to remediate damaged homes, some of which are in historic districts. We are currently siding our first project with them in the Lower 9th Ward.”
It’s important to work with remodelers who know how to renovate in your area in this specialty. For example, the Renovative Building Group in Nashville recently re-sided a home in a historic district with LP SmartSide Smooth Siding. The goal was to preserve the charm of the nearly century old bungalow-style home. “I love the texture and versatility of LP SmartSide Smooth Siding,” says Bobby Bastin, Renovative Building Group president. “In this case, we used the product over the entire exterior to preserve its historical roots.”
Using engineered wood siding in historic districts achieves two important goals—preserving the distinctive look of the original siding and ensuring that it has the durability to withstand the passage of time—to keep its historical charm intact for years to come.
When you’re re-siding your home, it’s important to consider how your design choices will impact your home’s resale value. While the material you choose can make a difference, the color of your home is a great way to add value and catch a buyer’s eye.