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From dream to reality: How to plan your re-side

This step-by-step guide is your roadmap to the re-side process. Creating your design, choosing materials, hiring a pro—it’s all covered here. Toggle the tabs below to explore each chapter of the re-side process.

Deciding & Comparing

Designing & Choosing

Hiring & Scoping


If you don’t know where to start, you’ve come to the right place

If you approach your re-siding project step by step, the process will be manageable—and the reward will be absolutely beautiful. We’ve outlined the steps of the re-side process below and in our Re-side Guide.

family modern house hardie plank

Step 1: How to tell if it’s time

Re-siding your home can be a worthy investment. New siding can express your unique personal style, help offer better protection against the elements, and boost the value of your home. Sometimes it’s clear that a replacement is necessary—like when you’re dealing with damage from weather or pests. But in other cases, replacing your siding may be more of a judgment call.

colonial house before oyster bay cedar shingle
If your siding looks faded and worn and simply repainting won’t improve it’s appearance, it may be time to re-side.
colonial house after oyster bay hardie plank hardie trim mountain sage arctic white
Fresh Hardie® Plank siding improves the look—and the value—of your home.

Questions to consider when you’re deciding if it’s time for a siding upgrade

How long has your current siding been in place?

Siding can last for decades, but if it’s near the tail end of its lifespan, it may be time to replace it—especially if your exterior starts to look old or worn, or you’ve outgrown your current style

What kind of upkeep and repair do you need to do?

Some siding may need extensive repair, especially as it nears the end of its usefulness. If pests have made your siding their home, if your siding is chipped or cracked and needs frequent repainting, you may want to consider replacing your siding entirely.

How extensive is any damage to your siding?

Damage can turn a nice-to-have project into an essential project, especially if it’s hard to find replacement siding for specific sections. If you’re dealing with siding damage on a large portion of your house, it may be worthwhile to upgrade your entire exterior.

How long do you plan to stay in the house—and do you plan to sell soon?

Fresh siding improves the value of your home and can entice buyers if you’re thinking about selling. If you’ll be living in your home for a while, you might want to invest in quality siding that will last for decades—and that reflects your personal style.

Is your house the most beautiful on the block?

Matching the energy of your neighborhood can increase the value of your home. If other neighbors have upgraded, that might be an incentive to re-side, especially if there are repairs to make.

How does your siding style and color reflect your personal style?

Your home’s design should be a reflection of your unique personal style. Does your siding feel stuck in the past? You may want to transform the look of your home by replacing dated siding styles and colors. Re-siding your home gives you the freedom to dream—and to achieve—the vision you have for your home.

As we started looking at the house when we were talking to a landscape architect, we thought, well, maybe we should re-side while we’re at it. Now I think it reflects more of what’s on the inside. It looks like a different house— it looks like new.

The Hartleys, Homeowners

Step 2: Compare home siding materials


Siding is your home’s first line of defense against the elements, so choose a long-lasting product that can stand up to weather, fire, and pests—and offers you an eye-catching design that won’t go out of style. Pick something your family will enjoy coming home to, and will appeal to future buyers as well. 

Pros and cons of different siding materials


Many people appreciate that vinyl siding comes in a range of colors, at a low cost. However, vinyl siding can melt in a fire and can even be damaged from the reflection of sun off of windows. Vinyl siding is less resistant to temperature extremes than other siding products. Even new vinyl siding won’t replicate the appearance of real wood, and can be more susceptible to fading when compared to other products.

Wood and engineered wood

Wood siding is often considered more aesthetically pleasing than vinyl siding, but its beauty comes at a higher price. Wood siding is also susceptible to moisture and damage from pests like woodpeckers and termites, may require more frequent maintenance over time, and is no match for a fire. Engineered wood siding is plagued by many of the same problems as traditional wood siding. It’s subject to damage from pests, each board is fuel for fire, and it’s susceptible to swelling, warping, and cracking in response to changes in moisture over time. 

Fiber cement

Fiber cement is a durable, low-maintenance material made of Portland cement, sand, water, and cellulose fibers. Fiber cement siding is up to five times thicker than vinyl and won’t rot or sustain damage from pests, nor will it ignite when exposed to a direct flame or add fuel to a fire. What’s more, fiber cement siding is more affordable than some of the more expensive siding options. Fiber cement siding, like Hardie® siding, is available in many different colors and styles and can be used to achieve a variety of design aesthetics—from traditional to ultra-modern—or replicate the look of wood or stucco.

Brick and stone

A brick exterior is a lower-maintenance option that is long-lasting and can stand up to the elements. It helps to retain heat, which makes it useful in colder climates. But brick can be expensive, and you won’t have as many color or style options to choose from. Like brick, a stone exterior provides long-lasting beauty, as long as it is installed correctly. Stone is sustainable and recyclable, but it’s costly. Many people choose stone or brick veneer for a similar look at a lower cost. 


Metal siding, like aluminum siding or steel, is strong, durable, and recyclable. Metal siding resists pests and is generally easy to maintain, but dents can be difficult to repair and panels can be tricky to replace. Metal siding is also often more expensive than many other products.

Which material will bring the most value to your home?

When comparing all your options for home siding materials, hardworking Hardie® fiber cement products stand up against fire, water, weather, climate, pests, and time— protecting your most precious asset for the long haul.

  1. Trusted protection against mother nature—and a 30-year limited warranty on our fiber cement siding, soffit, and trim products
  2. Long-lasting beauty in a low-maintenance finish: our baked-on ColorPlus® Technology finishes are engineered to last longer and look better than a traditional paint job
  3. Personalized design to bring your dream aesthetic to life

Step 3: Choose your siding

hand with hardie catalogs brochures
southern living idea house detail front with hardie shingle and artisan in white

Once you’ve researched your options for materials, it’s time to think about what siding material or brand will work best for your needs, vision, and lifestyle. If you choose Hardie® fiber cement siding, you know you’re investing in a high-performance, low-maintenance material that will look beautiful for years to come. You can explore all of our products, colors, and styles in our product catalog.

Make sure to consider all the factors

Overall budget

While the cost of a siding replacement is one factor, consider the cost of maintenance and repairs over the years as well. Some fiber cement products may even lower your home insurance premium, saving you money year after year.

Design aesthetic

You may decide on a single product that offers a range of styles and colors, or use multiple products to achieve your desired look. For example, some homeowners choose to bring layered texture to their home’s exterior by contrasting Hardie® Plank siding with a Hardie® Shingle accent.


Some siding options are better suited to certain climates than others. Whether it’s extreme heat or freezing temperatures, your climate has an impact on the longevity of your siding. Did you know you can purchase siding that’s engineered for your specific climate? Only Hardie® fiber cement products are Engineered for Climate® to deliver the high performance you need for your area.

Product quality and warranty

Ask for samples so you can see the different materials in person. Review the warranty information for each product so you can see what’s covered and for how long. Unlike other companies, James Hardie provides a 30-year, non-prorated limited warranty for fiber cement siding, soffit, and trim products.

Need guidance from a contractor?

If you want to discuss your re-side with a pro, use our contractor locator to find a trusted professional in your area. They can help you weigh your options and find the ideal material for your home.

Ready to take the next step?

Kick off your siding project today by sharing your vision and discussing the re-side process with a local pro.

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