Vinyl Siding Prices: 3 Secrets From the Pros that Will Help Your Save Big!

Vinyl Siding on a Traditional Colonial Style Home
Are you struggling to find accurate vinyl siding prices for your project?

This is because it is very difficult for contractors and homeowners alike to find any siding materials prices online. Even the big home improvement chains are horrible at providing this information on their websites. When you find the product you like, you won’t know how much material you will get for a given price.

In this guide, we reveal 3 secrets from the pros about vinyl siding prices, so you can finally understand what is going on!

We will walk you through vinyl siding prices for materials and installation.

Quick cost calculator below, will give you industry average figures of materials and labor costs for low-end, mid-range and high-end pricing of vinyl siding. Materials include siding panels, corner posts, j-channel trim, 3/8″ fanfold insulation (backer board) and all other necessary trim for lights, vents and water spigots.

 Cost to Install Vinyl Siding
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Total Cost
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Most vinyl siding materials are divided into three groups: Clapboard / dutch lap siding, cedar shingles impression siding, and specialty vinyl siding that resembles brick or natural stone – faced finish. Clapboard and Dutch-lap siding is the horizontal panels siding that resembles cedar horizontal siding, and comes in three thickness groups, which make it low-end, mid-range and high-end siding materials.

Secret 1: Vinyl Siding Prices For Installation – CONTROVERSIAL MUST READ 🙂

Siding Installation can be very simple and very complicated at the same time. Basically, most contractors will charge a set amount per square of siding installed, and you can use our siding estimator to calculate your siding installation cost.

Vinyl Siding

In a nutshell, a typical siding contractor will charge somewhere between $450-550 per square installed (more for premium siding, difficult installation and other extras). Also, you need to account for tear-off (typically old plastic siding, wood shingles / clapboard or aluminum siding), though if you have wooden siding, it really makes no sense to remove it. You should just install insulation over wood siding and apply vinyl siding on top. Also, the number of window and door wraps will make a difference in the overall cost.

Controversial nature of the siding business:

The “premium siding places” such as Sears, Home Depot, Lowe’s, Bil-Ray (markets at BJ’s Club now) and other local “premium” siding and home improvement joints will try to up-sell you into almost $1000 per square territory, telling you how they stand behind their work and so on and so forth.

In reality – they employ the typical siding contractor (from above) who does the same work for just over half the cost, pay them peanuts, and there is really nothing to stand behind. Unlike roofing installation, where your roof can leak and cause tons of damages, siding can only buckle when installed incorrectly (for example if siding is nailed too tight, when a panel expands, it cannot slide/move left or right, it buckles), or some really crappy work, which you as a homeowner will notice before you issue the last payment for the job. Just make sure your contractor caulks the window copping when they install your siding (if of course you are paying them for window metal trim).

Average Siding Costs:
Low End
Mid Range
High End

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Secret 2: They will Sub-out all work …

Bottom line – whether you hire Joe Shmo Siding Company or a “premium joint siding company” it will be Joe Shmo or guys like them, installing your vinyl siding. Big companies do no not hire installers – they work with sub-contractors to install their siding, windows, doors, etc., and pay them on a per-square basis. And the faster the sub-contractor finishes the work (which in return, makes quality go down), the faster they can start another project. So it actually is in your interest to hire local guys vs. a big name company, because then the quality will be better (most of the time at least).

How do I know? I was that Joe Shmo siding guy working for Bil-Ray – a Queens, NY Company that at the time had a Sears contract to do siding, doors and windows installation in New England, and (possibly) other regions of US. Bil-Ray lost that Sears contract around 2006-2007 due to (in my opinion) mismanagement, theft, drug abuse by management, bad overall performance, complaints, etc. Actually, they did not tell us the exact reason why Sears did not renew their contract with Bil-Ray Aluminum, but I saw what was going on in our office (Pawtucket, RI), and I’ve seen how this business works from the inside, and yes – we got peanuts for our work (very little money that is). And oh boy, do I have some stories to tell 😀 …

But these are not my stores to tell – just search for “Bil-Ray Aluminum Siding Corp” and read multiple RipOffReport and ScamBook reports about them.

I want to also make 1 point – Bill Ray has done some good installs as well. And they are not the only company which is like what I describe above. I just had the privilege to work for them – I’m sure every big company listed above (and others) has similar problems with sub-quality work (pun intended).

Bottom line – this is not about Bil-Ray or any other of those big guys. This is about homeowners NOT getting ripped off!

Average Siding Costs:
Low End
Mid Range
High End

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Vinyl siding materials and trim:

Typical vinyl siding thicknesses are .042″, .044″ and .046″ respectively. For the purposes of this guide we will use the basic clap-board .042″ thickness vinyl siding, with 1/2″ bump-out (how much it sticks out), and we will use publicly available vinyl siding prices from national home improvement chain’s website (big orange box), which sells “generic” brand vinyl siding.

Besides the siding panels, you would also need certain accessories to complete the installation and make your home look beautiful. These accessories are:

  • Outside Corner posts
  • Inside Corner posts
  • J-channel
  • Light/electrical box mounts
  • Water spigot and other wall protrusion mounts (split mounts)
  • Soffit
  • Fascia
  • Insulation / house wrap (for new construction)
  • Starter and finish strips

All these accessories are needed to complete a vinyl siding installation, though they might not be needed for every house. Still, you will always need J-channel and corner posts to conceal the edges of the siding panels. All window and door casings need J-channel trim (unless it is a new construction window or door, with a built-in J-channel). Soffit and fascia might not be necessary if you have a PVC trim on your house, but most vinyl siding jobs include these. Also, unless you are OK with having ugly holes in your siding, you probably want light and water mounts.

Secret 3: How are Vinyl Siding Prices Calculated?

The cost of siding materials is calculated on a per square basis (one square is 100 sq. ft.). Square is a term in the construction industry that is used to simplify communication between contractors, suppliers and architects, and most contractors will use squares in their pricing.

Vinyl siding is typically sold in cardboard boxes – 2 squares in each box – 24 panels, 12.5 feet long, with 8″ exposure (D4 or double 4″ lap). Though you can buy individual siding panels, the cost will be higher than if you buy a whole box.

Vinyl Siding Trim Accessories

Vinyl Siding Trim Accessories

Prices for all white vinyl siding, trim and accessories: All trim (J-channel, F-channel, Inside and Outside Corner posts, starter and finish trim comes in 10 feet long sections. All prices for white color. Other colors typically cost 3-5% more.

  • 2 square box of “big orange” D4 .042″ clapboard vinyl siding costs $154.00 or $78 / square.
  • 3″ face (each side) corner post with 3/4″ channel is $18.98
  • Inside Corner – $12.78
  • 5/8″ J-channel costs $6.40
  • Vinyl starter strip – $5.97
  • Finish trim (top lock) – $6.38
  • Soffit (12 inch exposure, 12″ long) – $14.81
  • 8″ vinyl fascia – $15.96
  • Mounting block (for lights / electrical outlets) – $7.35
  • Recessed split mount (for water spigots and other wall protrusions) – $10.68

This list pretty much covers the vinyl siding prices. You will need to add you state or local sales tax to this price, at checkout.

There are a few additional items you will need them to install your vinyl siding:

Loose roofing nails, and wall insulation (backer board) or house wrap. A bucket of 2″ loose roofing nails will cost about $25-30 and Fanfold Wall Insulation (Owens Corning Foamular 3/8 in. x 48 in. x 50 ft. – 2 square coverage) will cost $37.48.

Average Siding Costs:
Low End
Mid Range
High End

See costs in your area Start Here - Enter Your Zip Code

Published/updated on: December 8, 2015

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6 thoughts on “Vinyl Siding Prices: 3 Secrets From the Pros that Will Help Your Save Big!

  1. Connie S.

    This is a great tool. I thought I would give you current HD pricing as of 4-25-15.Here they are in the same order as above. 159.00, 19.36, 13.20, 5.97, 6.20. 10% more for colors all special order.

  2. Ana Zambra-K

    Thank you for your complete analysis report. We need to replace few places that are bucking out. Should we get them repaired or should we change the whole house frontvwhere the sliding cynic covers are situated?

  3. laurie

    Thank you for the info. i have a question though. Trying to keep costs down. Three sides of my house are stucco. One of which has nothing, due to zero property line. Would it have to have siding?

    1. Leo B Post author


      You want to have siding not just for looks. Siding protects your house. So yes you should have something on then 4th side