Replacing the siding on your home is a major investment, and it’s an important one. Along with roofing, siding provides most of the protection for your home, standing between what’s outside of it and what’s inside. So it just makes sense to choose the best siding materials possible, right?
But it also makes sense to choose the best siding contractor to install your siding. That matters particularly if the siding you have selected is fiber cement from The James Hardie Company.® Installation techniques are a bit different for Hardie siding than for some other products like vinyl or even wood. Specialized equipment and skills are both required. So if Hardie® siding is your choice, you need to be particular about who you hire to install it.
How well your siding performs over its expected life and how well your investment in it pays off depends in great part on the quality of the installation. Hardie products have really good warranties, so the quality of the materials isn’t usually the issue. When problems develop, it is most often due to the installation.
Having Hardie Siding Installed? Ask Your Siding Contractor Before You Sign:
Credentials: The first question is one you should ask any prospective siding contractor, regardless of the siding material you select: Are you licensed and insured? Minnesota state law requires that residential building contractors have both. You can verify this information online with the State of Minnesota, but if the contractor dodges the answer, that’s not a good sign. Also, some locales require local licenses in some building trades, so check with your city government to see if that’s the case for your area.
References: The answer to “Can you give me a list of references for other siding clients?” should always be a resounding “Yes.” References should be recent projects, and of the same type as you’re planning. And we recommend you contact some of them. Unscrupulous companies out there may give out names that are not legitimate, and still others will pay a friend or someone else to respond, so you may want to ask if you can come see their home. Usually if someone has agreed with a contractor to be on their reference list that won’t be a problem.
Experience: Knowing how long the company has been installing Hardie siding is important. Since installation of fiber cement is a bit different than other siding projects, you want someone who knows that they are doing and who will follow Hardie’s specs and recommended installation procedures. Hardie has a process whereby they certify contractors to install their products, so also ask if they are a Hardie certified contractor. If the answer isn’t yes, keep looking for another contractor who is.
There are a number of other questions you should ask, and we’ll cover some of those in future posts. But for now, these are the main ones to ask at your initial meeting. Because if there are problems with the answers to any of these three questions, you should find another contractor.
Oh, and by the way, we wanted to tell you that the answers to these questions with regard to our Minnesota siding company should give you confidence in our work. We are licensed and insured, we’ve got lots of references we can share with you, plus we have plenty of experience with installation of Hardie siding and trim products. You can read just a few of our client reviews online. We’d love to talk with you about the possibility of installing Hardie fiber cement siding on your home this season – contact us today for a free in-home consultation.