Costs for wood siding materials vary depending on the type of wood and siding design.This brief guide goes over some of the cheapest quality wood siding options available out there.

Some of the cheapest wood siding options include plywood, pinewood, engineered wood, composite wood siding, cypress, and hardboard siding. The cost of wood siding usually depends on its thickness, design of the wood, and where you buy it. T1-11 plywood (cheapest) siding roughly costs between $1 to $4 per sq ft installed.

Wood siding is an excellent choice especially if you can source the wood locally or go for a simple design like board and batten. You could even cut your costs further if you choose thin wood and install insulation.

These are the least expensive wood siding options out there.

Type of Wood Siding (Pocket-Friendly options)Est Cost Per Sq FootAvg cost 1,500 sq ft Home
Engineered wood$2.50$6$6,375


Plywood is one of the cheapest and simplest wood siding styles you can go for if your budget is very low or if you are installing siding on a garage, barn, or temporary structure. It is rare to find modern homes, especially in urban areas with plywood siding. Plywood siding also known as T1-11 does not hold very well in wet weather and may need to be repainted or stained frequently.

Plywood siding is very economical with per square costs ranging between $1 to $4 depending on the quality and thickness of the plywood. You will also spend the lowest amount to install plywood siding in most places although costs can go up if there is a lot of wastage.

What's the Cheapest Wood Siding


If you are on a very tight budget and don’t mind using less premium wood, then cypress siding is your best option. It is softwood with similar characteristics as pine and other softwoods. Pressure-treated cypress can offer the same durability you could get from more expensive lumber. Cypress is the most affordable option for those in the southeast because cypress trees are locally available.

Expect Cypress siding to cost between $1.5 to $5 per square foot, if you can source the materials locally and go for a simple style of siding such as board and batten, shiplap, or tongue and groove. Costs may also depend on the thickness of the wood you choose.


Pinewood is a softwood and very popular because of its affordability and availability. With proper maintenance and care, pinewood siding can last for many years. However, the cheapest pinewood may not have the rot resistance that more premium wood siding has.

Costs per square foot for pocket-friendly pinewood siding range between $2.5 to $5 depending on the thickness of the wood, size, and shape/design. It’s easy to find pinewood in all hardware stores across the country.

Engineered Wood

There are other affordable engineered wood siding options out there including generic products from different local and foreign manufacturers. With a bit of digging and shopping around popular hardware stores, you can get good quality engineered wood siding for as low as a dollar or two per sq foot. The durability and longevity of engineered wood siding vary from one product to another.

Costs per square foot for engineered wood siding ranges between $2.5 to $6 depending on the quality of the wood and design. Engineered wood siding is more rot and pest resistant than natural wood because of the way it is manufactured and the additives it contains. Despite this, it is usually cheaper and more sustainable than natural wood.


The Cedar’s straight grain makes it extremely suitable for developing a stable and attractive exterior siding. This attractiveness can be further increased through staining which also goes exceptionally well with its straight grain.

Apart from being both rot and insect resistant, Cedar siding is also known to be quite structurally sound as far as moisture absorption is concerned. This means that it is not easily susceptible to cracking, splitting, and swelling.

The price of Cedar is heavily dependent on the amount of heartwood in its woodgrain. Heartwood simply refers to the red portion of the wood grain that is responsible for both the Cedar’s structural soundness and its extent of insect resistance.

Experts advise that Cedar siding be maintained through yearly power washing. It should also be re-stained at least once every three years.


The Spruce tree species immensely resembles the Pine as far as structural features are concerned. The fact that it is a softwood species makes it extremely easy to mill. It can therefore be used to facilitate the production of diverse styles of siding.

Its major distinction from the Pine is the longer lengths it is mostly available in. It also comes in a variety of grades which greatly affects its purchase price.

Spruce siding is extremely susceptible to insects, decay and warping. This means that it must be regularly maintained through cleaning, painting, staining, and sealing lest any moisture finds its way into its make-up.

What is the Cheapest Wood Siding to install?

Plywood is the cheapest siding to install. A professional installer will charge between $3 to $8 per square foot to install T1-11 OSB plywood siding depending on the style of siding, the shape of your house, and other factors. The average cost to install plywood siding is $2,450 but you could pay as low as $1400 or high as $4000 depending on the above factors.

Tip: Looking for an affordable siding installation service? Our free contractor location tool helps homeowners to find and connect with top-rated siding installers near them. All you need to do to use this free tool is scroll to the top of this page, enter your zip code, and answer a few questions about your project. We will link you with at least three reliable siding installers in your location.

What is the Cheapest Wood Siding to install house


You need to know the measurements of your house exterior in square feet or linear feet to properly estimate the cost of siding. Measure each wall length in your house and then multiply it by the height of the house on each side to get the entire measurement. You may also need to factor in other costs such as the cost of installing insulation, removing old siding, and cost of materials.

Vinyl siding is the least expensive siding option currently with costs per square foot ranging between $1 and $3. Vinyl is a synthetic material used to make various products including siding. It can be made to look like real wood siding and is available in a variety of colors and designs.

FAQs What's the Cheapest Wood Siding

Ben McInerney
Author: Ben McInerney - is a qualified arborist with 15 plus years of industry experience in Arboriculture. He ran a successful tree service before turning to writing and publishing. Ben is dedicated to providing users with the most accurate up-to-date information on everything trees.