Nichiha makes three lines of fiber cement siding, though most homeowners are interested mostly in the cost friendly NichiProducts line of planks, panels, shingles and shakes that competes with James Hardie siding.
NichiProducts siding costs $8.50 to $15.00 per square foot installed.
Premium Plank Siding runs $11.00 to $17.50 per square foot. And Nichiha Architectural Wall Panels are $18.00 to $33.00 installed.
*Professional, warrantied installation costs are around $6.00 to $10.00 per square foot. The rest is the siding, trim, soffit, and accessories needed for installation.
The bulk of this Nichiha siding review is about NichiProducts and includes a comparison of Nichiha to James Hardie in this category.
Nichiha Siding Options
1) NichiProducts is the least expensive option, most popular and the series that competes directly with James Hardie fiber cement siding.
Like Hardie, NichiProducts are manufactured in plank, panel, and shingle/shake styles. The names are NichiBoard, NichiPanel, NichiShake, NichiStraight shingles and NichiStaggered shingles.
But there’s a distribution problem…
Where is NichiProducts siding available? NichiProducts siding is only sold in the MidAtlantic and Southeast US, a total of 13 states and Washington DC: Alabama, Arkansas, the District of Columbia, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia.
So that is the first thing to be aware of – this page might not have relevant information for you if you want basic fiber cement siding and are comparing brands to James Hardie.
Why is Nichiha sold in such a limited area? A Nichiha representative told us that the company doesn’t sell this product where freezing temperatures (North) or excessive rain (Northwest) are common. That is because those climates are hard on fiber cement siding in ways, they don’t affect vinyl siding.
Hardie is sold in all climates. But the company formulates its siding differently for sale in the northern half of the US, which covers most of the areas that have freezing or cold and damp seasons.
Nichiha siding would perform well in the drier areas of the West, but Nichiha hasn’t chosen to make an investment in production facilities in that region.
2) Premium Plank Siding might be strike two, potentially, for Nichiha – This is because the siding is not currently available anywhere, apart from some local distributors having limited quantities. One Nichiha Rep at headquarters told us that there “is no timeline” for when it will be obtainable, though another said they’re “hoping” to have full distribution by Fall 2023.
3) Architectural Wall Panels are beautiful, interesting, and long-lasting. But they are pricey. You’ll find them installed on high-end homes, often but not always with modern design. They are also a popular commercial siding product adorning retail stores, medical offices, restaurants, educational facilities, and general office space.
How much does it cost to side a house with Nichiha siding?
Siding a typical 2,000 square foot home with attached garage costs $17,000 to $32,000 using NichiProducts.
Premium siding on the same house would run $22K to $36K. Using Architectural Wall Panels, or AWPs, the cost soars to $30K to $50K.