9 Pros and Cons of Board and Batten Siding You Need To Know

What are the pros and cons of board and batten siding? Anyone with a finger on the pulse of popular home design will recognize the distinctive look of board and batten siding!

But is this exterior finish really all it’s cracked up to be?

Board and batten-style siding is incredibly trendy right now and offers an aesthetic that’s hard to replicate with more common styles of siding.

While traditionally made of wood, innovative products made of vinyl, fiber cement, and other materials have made board and batten siding easier to install and more affordable for today’s homeowners.

If you have your heart set on real wood board and batten, then you should expect installation to be costly and time-consuming.

Here’s what you should know about the pros and cons of board and batten siding.

9 Pros and Cons of Board and Batten Siding You Need To Know

Pros of Board and Batten Siding

1. Trendy appearance

Board and batten siding is a very popular choice for both new construction and renovations. For those thinking about selling or renting their home, investing in a trendy siding material is a great idea.

And applying a trend like board and batten to an older home is a wonderful way to make it look fresh and interesting.

2. Unique curb appeal

Even if keeping up with current design trends is low on your list of priorities, board and batten siding offers a unique aesthetic that will make your home stand out from the crowd.

Installing board and batten siding can help differentiate your house within a monotonous real estate development. It can also make your home easier for guests, delivery services, and others to find.

And, compared to some other exterior home finishes, board and batten siding is unlikely to draw the ire of your neighbors or local homeowners’ association.

pros of board and batten siding
Image: Snuffy

3. Historical value

Despite being so popular today, board and batten definitely isn’t new. This style of siding has been used for barns, homes, and other buildings for many centuries.

The last time board and batten siding was extremely trendy was during the Victorian Era. In contemporary design, board and batten tends to be associated with a more generic farmhouse aesthetic.

Of course, your home doesn’t need to be historical to benefit from board and batten siding. This finish can add much-needed charm to old and new builds alike!

4. Variety of materials available

Originally, board and batten siding was made of wood. Today, many different materials can be used to recreate this look.

Vinyl board and batten siding is becoming increasingly common. It offers the convenience and affordability of vinyl siding while retaining the classic look of wood.

Board and batten can also be recreated using fiber cement or metal. These materials aren’t as popular as wood or vinyl but are still worth considering.

Once installed, all board and batten siding will look nearly identical. So appearance is of little concern when choosing a material.

However, board and batten-style siding will take on all of the typical benefits and drawbacks of the material it is made of. These include factors like cost, routine maintenance, and insulation quality.

variety of materials available
Image: Christopher Howitt

5. Durable and long-lasting

On average, board and batten siding lasts around 25 years. Proper installation and maintenance is essential to extend the siding’s lifespan as long as possible.

The longevity of board and batten siding is also largely determined by the type of material used.

6. Versatility

Again, board and batten siding can be applied to all styles of homes. It can also be utilized in many ways.

You can install board and batten siding vertically or horizontally. Small changes to panel width or depth will have a big impact on the final look.

Board and batten can be paired with brick, stone, shingles, lap siding, and more to create a one-of-a-kind facade. This accented look is also a wonderful way to update a home while cutting costs.

cons of board and batten siding
Image: Ullysses

Cons of Board and Batten Siding

1. Time-consuming installation

Wooden board and batten siding is installed one piece at a time. This detailed and labor-intensive process takes far longer than installing an alternative like shingles or lap siding.

Board and batten made of vinyl or fiber cement often feature several molded “planks” per panel. This makes installation significantly easier and faster than traditional board and batten siding.

2. Costly

As far as materials are concerned, board and batten costs about the same as any other type of siding. But, as we mentioned, board and batten siding often takes a lot of time to install.

These man-hours add up fast when hiring professional installers to refinish your home’s exterior.

3. May become outdated

The risk of adopting a current trend for your own home is that it may be a passing fad. No one knows how popular board and batten siding will be in 5, 10, or 15 years.

While it’s unlikely to completely fall out of style, there’s always a chance that board and batten will be seen as outdated in a few years.

Using a timeless color scheme and keeping the rest of your home’s exterior fairly simple can extend the fashionability of your chosen siding.

Of course, if board and batten is something you truly love, how the trend ages may not matter!

may become outdated
Image: Snuffy

Final Thoughts

There are countless ways to incorporate board and batten siding onto part or all of your home’s exterior. And if you opt for pre-molded vinyl or fiber cement, board and batten is a relatively cheap and easy way to boost curb appeal.

Authentic wood board and batten is significantly more expensive and difficult to install than its contemporary successors. If you’re willing to front the cost, however, you can expect many years of quality from the investment.

Installation woes aside, board and batten is an undeniably attractive alternative to standard lap siding or shingles. But there’s also the question of how this siding trend will age in the coming years.