Recently we found an abundance of cedar wood siding hidden beneath the lovely aluminum exterior of our farmhouse fixer upper. This discovery had got me thinking about how to remove the aluminum siding and expose the beautiful cedar wood siding that lies below.
Farmhouse Remodel – Detour
If you’ve been following along you might be wondering where we are with our farmhouse build? Well… we’ve hit a little road block! Having reworked the architectural design to fit our budget, the “soft number” bids were good good, we had submitted our plans to the city and were ready to hit go. However, as the “hard bids” and an asbestos test (which came back positive for roughly 4000 sq. ft. of asbestos) rolled in we found our budget had quickly been blown right out of the water!
To say we were deflated is an understatement! We were faced with the reality of completely starting over on the design, or phasing in the build and chipping away at our plans to bring the numbers back into control.
Wood Siding Discovery
The original architectural plans show a combination of horizontal lap siding and a beautiful board and batten on the exterior. However the discovery of the original cedar siding on our home has changed these plans. It honestly pains me to nix the board and batten siding which I love so much. However, I realize that this newly discovered cedar is a great option for our pocket books. Additionally, the siding is original to the farmhouse, so at least we know it is historically accurate for the home. This seems an obvious choice when it comes to pinching our reno pennies!
Removing the Aluminum Siding to Reveal Wood Siding
The next question is… in what shape is the cedar siding? Well the only way to find this out is to remove the aluminum lap and see what lies beneath. I’m not going to lie, this is a little scary, given the notion we could be opening up a can of worms and leaving our home exposed to the elements. Who know what could underneath?! Perfectly good wood siding or molded wood rot?! It’s a crap shoot!
Wood Siding = Big Savings
However, we truly can’t move forward with our build and proposed budget until we know what we’re working with. Our builder has suggested his crew start removing the aluminum siding, however you know me… why hire someone when you can do it yourself?! Removing the siding will save us about $3000 – $5000 (that’s a lot when you’re already wildly over budget!)
Removing the siding ourselves also has an added bonus – we have the ability to take our discarded aluminum to a scrap yard and recycle it. This not only keeps it out of the land fill (win!) but also puts a few hundred dollars back into our pockets (double win!) In this build, every penny counts people!
Now, I’m not going to lie, removing aluminum siding is not fun, but it’s also not rocket science! Make sure you glove up (to avoid getting cut), wear safety goggles and a mask, start from the top most piece and work your way down.
Horizontal Lap Wood Siding Farmhouse Inspiration
Removing this section of siding took me around 3 hours and thus far the siding is looking great! Of course now that we are changing direction on the siding, my mind has been racing about how the exterior design will all come together. Pinterest to the rescue! The more I research, the more I love the idea of the original cedar horizontal lap wood siding… it’s charming and perfectly suited for our Cape Cod style farmhouse.
The top of our home will be built out to accommodate more room on the second floor (see above elevation). A front wall and three dormers will be built in. Perhaps this would be a good opportunity to add back in some board and batten, like this gorgeous home below.
Perhaps this is will be a “beautiful oops!” You know… the kind of mishap that turns out for the best. I do love the look of horizontal lap wood siding with gorgeous shutters for a classic cape cod farmhouse feel!
I’m excited to see how this unfolds! How about you?!