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Compare Siding Companies: How to Make the Right Choice

Published on: May 15, 2024

You make a significant investment when you replace the siding on your home or business. Having the best siding materials and high-quality installation is essential as is peace of mind that your investment will go the distance and protect your building for decades to come. Before you hire someone, learn how to compare siding companies to make the right choice in who helps you protect your building’s exterior.

Siding companies are not all the same. Some specialize in installing specific kinds of siding, such as vinyl or fiber cement. Others are better at completing repairs after storms without replacing all siding.

How to Compare Siding Companies

At first, it might seem like you’re comparing apples to apples. Everyone claims to offer the same service and they likely tell you that they are the best. If you have a specific material manufacturer that you want, they’ll claim they can install it with no problem. What they might not tell you is that they aren’t a preferred contractor with that company or that they’ve never handled it before.

To avoid immense regret with who you select to be your siding contractor, review these guidelines.

1.  Siding Tear Off

Much like roofs, you can add a new layer of siding over the existing one to save money. The problem is, you can’t replace the sheathing if you use this method, which could shorten the life of your new siding or lead you to remove it all to replace the sheathing in a few years anyway.

Contractors who quote your project and seem far lower than the others might be using this method to win you over. Ask in-depth questions to make sure you know what you’re paying for and the quality of the installation job.

2. Discounts on Additional Services

The best time to replace your windows is during a whole home siding project. To replace windows, you need to remove the siding anyway. And if you don’t do the process together, you could weaken your siding during removal and pay labor costs for removal when replacing windows.

If there’s a chance you might want to combine services, look for contractors skilled in both services and ask questions about how much you could save by doing it all at once.

3. Options

Some contractors come in and give the same pitch to everyone without listening to your preferences. This is not a good sign of service and might mean that the contractor isn’t as skilled with other types of siding

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A good contractor will work with you to match your budget to your siding type. Know that more fancy siding, such as that with scalloped edges or shakes, will cost more as will varying your siding styles or patterns. But if these are important qualities to you, it’s worth discussing with your contractor.

4. Ask to See Work that the Company Completed 5 Years Ago

Time is a true testament to how good (or bad) a contractor is at installation. Poorly installed siding will buckle and warp with time. And with more time, it will allow moisture behind the siding that can do serious damage to the very structure of the home.

Ask to see work that the company completed 5-10 years ago. This siding should still look great so long as it hasn’t undergone any serious weather conditions or intentional damage from the building owner. 

With permission from the owner, walk around the building and look at the siding carefully. At 5-10 years, the siding should look about like it did when the company installed it since, depending on the materials used, siding lasts 20 or more years.

Allow the Professionals to Do It

5. Check on Experience

You want a siding contractor who has been in the business for no less than 5 years. The more experience they have, the less chance there will be that they’ll encounter a problem they don’t know how to fix. 

If you’re having vinyl siding installed, you can check the Vinyl Siding Institute website to see if the contractor is verified. Review the contractor’s local and state licenses to make sure everything is in good standing.

6. Read Reviews

Online reviews can be very telling. You’ll learn some of the nuances of working with the contractor you’re considering. When checking reviews, look at the Better Business Bureau ratings to see if there are any complaints against the company or if the company has faced complaints in the past. This is a decent meter for how effective the company is at managing customer inquiries and follow-up in case anything goes wrong.

7. Interview Multiple Contractors

To truly compare multiple contractors, you must meet with more than one. Some people like what they hear when they meet with the first contractor and just spring into action right then and there to sign contracts and start working with them. The problem is you have no comparison point. 

Discipline yourself to meet with at least three contractors. While this is a time investment, it’s one you won’t likely regret. Not only will you have some leverage to price shop and then negotiate rates with your favorite contractor, but you’ll also know better what you’re comparing the service to.

When getting quotes, ask that the contractor itemize the quote so you can see the price of materials, labor and disposal. 

Most contractors will tell you that the price is firm. But that doesn’t mean you can’t negotiate for additional services, such as free gutters since the contractor will be removing the gutters to replace the siding anyway.

Ask about financing offers or ways you can pay down the majority of the cost in the first 12 months without interest. 

8. Ask About Warranties

The workmanship warranty is a crucial element in the total price and quality of your siding installation job. Some contractors will call their warranty lifetime without offering context for what that means. 

Lifetime can mean however long the siding holds up. Or it could mean the life of the homeowner. Learn more about how the warranty is calculated if it includes proration based on the date of installation.

Hopefully, you never need the warranty because the work is outstanding. But knowing about the warranty is a smart move and can help tell you how confident the contractor is in their installation work.

9. Maintenance and Repair Work

Once you find a good contractor, you want to know they’ll be there when you need them for maintenance and repairs. Ask about service in case you need to replace a siding panel or request recommendations for painters, power washers, etc. A good contractor has a network of professionals they recommend to help you make your siding last and complete the required maintenance to keep it working at its best.

A good siding contractor will also spend a little time with you explaining the maintenance requirements for the siding you select. That way, you know better what you’re committing to with that siding and can make an informed decision about both the upfront cost of the siding and its ongoing costs.

Quality Siding Installation in the Greater Seattle, Washington, Area

2FL Windows, Siding and Roofing offers high-quality siding installation in the greater Seattle, Washington, area. You can rest assured that you’ll get an outstanding warranty. Plus, we send skilled professionals for in-person, free estimates so you can ask questions and learn more about the project. Learn more about our services by contacting us today.

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