Siding with Excellence

Once the 45 windows were set in place, it was time to install the siding on the 2009 HGTV Dream Home. The siding is pre-primed SFC pine that is kiln-dried, beveled and channeled one-by-tens. Redwood trim will provide a nice accent.

“These houses traditionally back one hundred years ago were all redwood,” says HGTV Dream Home builder Bruce Lee. “Cost, obviously, has played a factor over the years, but we still like to use as much redwood as we possibly can because that’s what sells these houses.”

Attention to detail, as always, is critical in all aspects of high-end home construction. That’s why nail holes in the siding will be invisible when installation is complete. “When I look at details like this, I think, so often builders will just fill that with caulk or not do anything at all. But you guys are taking some extra measures,” says Jack Thomasson, HGTV Dream Home planner.

“That's what we like to do,” Lee says. “We like to take the one extra step that most builders don't. The details are what set us apart. Most contractors or developers would just paint over those nails. And back in the traditional homes at the turn-of-the-century, you didn't see that. They're all set and puttied. They spent the extra time doing that.”

A similar amount of care will be taken on finishing touches for the porch, Thomasson says. “What will happen is someone will be spending time in whatever furniture ends up being out here, and they'll be noticing these details. They'll notice if it's done right,” he adds.

Someone might not notice the detail work right away, Lee says, “… but down the road they'll start appreciating it and say, ‘Wow! Look what these guys did.’ Or somebody will point it out to them, and then they'll really start appreciating their home.”

Details like this can be helpful during resale, Thomasson notes. Homeowners trying to sell their house can point out details like these to prospective buyers, and that makes a big difference, he adds.

Behind the siding

A quality siding installation is a great feature of any home, but what’s behind the siding is equally important. That’s why Lee uses a few tricks for installing house wrap on the homes he builds.

“When you're installing the house wrap it’s a good idea to use a straightedge on the inside corners,” Lee explains. “What you want to do is push that into the corner. What that does is provides enough of the house wrap material in that corner so when you install the siding, you're not ripping that paper. Because if you were to rip that paper, then you have water getting into your house.”

When you have enough paper in the corner you staple it into place, and then you're ready to install the siding, Lee says. “House wrap serves many functions, but one most importantly. The primary purpose of the [house wrap] paper is for water-penetration prevention, to keep water out of your house,” he adds.