The choice to go with fiber cement siding over conventional methods such as vinyl, wood, or aluminum is a wise one. Perhaps no material offers the combination of benefits that include exquisite looks, surprising longevity, environmental friendliness, and resistance to wind, fire, and weather. Therefore many builders, contractors, and homeowners aren't faced with the question of whether or not to use fiber cement, but instead what kind of fiber cement products to use.
Aside from looks and durability, one of the things that makes fiber cement so appealing for residential (and commercial) use is the wide variety of options available. It can be tough for contractors to deal with finicky homeowners, but there are so many different colors, styles, shapes, and installation options with fiber cement that some version of the product will undoubtedly appeal to their taste. As for those options, here are the variations of the versatile products that Allura USA provides:
What will attract most customers looking to install fiber cement on their home is the color. Allura features 22 colors of siding and accessories that willmatch almost any décor, shutters, roofing, and home style. Neutral colors are extremely popular when it comes to fiber cement siding with shades such astaupe, suede, and marigold being easily able to coordinate with and around. Part of the variety of the product though is colors that are more prominentsuch as a deep autumn red or a coastal blue which makes the siding 'pop' instead of just serving as a subtle background.
One of the other major benefits of installing fiber cement on a home build or siding replacement is the ability of the product to emulate other materials.For example, a few more of the colors that Allura offers include cedar, mahogany, redwood, granite gray, and slate which offer the looks of those materialsbut at a fraction of the cost, lower maintenance, and with much simpler installation.
Of course color alone doesn't help produce a look similar to wood, stone, or even vinyl siding. For that Allura offers six different texture styles, themost popular of which are wood grain, stucco, and smooth. These options can help push your customers further towards selecting fiber cement as it offersthe looks and even feel of popular alternate materials but also with fire, insect, and weather resistance.
Shapes and Installation Types
The colors and textures of fiber cement siding are part of a three prong system that your customer must decide upon. The third is the installation typeand thus the shape of the product. One of the most popular choices is lap siding which gives the home the appearance and workability of either wood orvinyl but with the benefits of fiber cement technology. Lap siding installs much like traditional products in a row by row basis so it does add to thelabor time compared to fiber cement architectural panels which come in sheets up to 4' X 10'. The architectural panels are appealing because they can beinstalled into fasteners which makes removal of damaged pieces literally a snap.
The other shapes / installation types offered is the shingles and shakes look. The half round and octagon shaped shingles are historically accurate andcombined with a texture finish, simulate wood almost perfectly. Your customers who want the cedar shake look without the maintenance and hassle can choosebetween different amounts of exposure (5”, 7”, 8”) and either a staggered or straight edge. Panels also come in a stucco finish which can be installedvertically to give a feel of age and durability, especially in Spanish mission style or beach front homes.
Fiber Cement Accessories
The dynamics and makeup of fiber cement makes it a great material for the finishing touches of your build as well. The material is light enough to be installedas a porch roof, Soffit, and backerboard to give the home a consistent quality about it. In addition, fiber cement trim is perfect for adding contrastof color but without mixing and matching material types and styles. Along the same lines as siding, the name of the game with the accessories is versatilityand options as the trim comes in various widths, the Soffit we feature has different venting patterns, and the porch ceilings have either a smooth or woodtexture.
Helping the Customer Choose
Getting customers to choose fiber cement as the main material on the exterior of their home is an easy sell based on the looks and benefits of the productas well as the long life span which lowers the cost on an annual basis compared to other products. What you'll have to guide them through so that they're 100% satisfied includes:
Color – over 22 different shades available on most of our fiber cement products.
Texture – smooth finish which is easy to paint or textured to give the look of wood or stucco.
Shapes – do customers want the traditional look of siding in rows or would they rather have stucco, shingles, or shakes?
Installation – lap siding will install in rows and may be more cost efficient to repair small sections. Architectural panels require the placement of guides and snap channels but install easily once that foundation is in place.
Accessories – do customers want the entire exterior to be constructed of fiber cement including trim, Soffit, porch ceilings, and underlayment? It really is the best option in regards to weather/fire/insect resistance and ensures the outside of their home looks consistent and wears on a consistent basis.
Contractors and homeowners alike do have plenty of options when it comes to incorporating fiber cement into the design. The versatile material and variety of styles that Allura offers ensures that design tastes across the spectrum can be met to increase curb appeal, market value, and most importantly builder and client peace of mind.