Shiplap Wall and Siding Cost Guide & Installation Tips

We discuss shiplap wall and siding cost and installation. We also included the cost to hire a contractor to build a shiplap wall and 4 free contractor quotes for the job.

Sometimes, plain walls can be boring. And sometimes, even the new paint doesn’t bring you the kind of excitement and fulfillment. In this cases, shiplap walls becomes a welcoming idea. Shiplap walls broaden your visual impact while still offering you a sense of minimalism.

If you love the feel of a cabin, cottage, or farmhouse, then shiplap walls will give you exactly that. The name may sound a little boring, but they happen to be an element considered to brighten any space while still making it cozy.

So, What Is Shiplap Wall?

Back then, people used shiplap on the exterior of their cabins or cottages. It was an inexpensive, yet effective way to protect their properties from destructive elements like water and also clad their building. The truth is, you can still use shiplap wall for the same purpose even in this day and age.

Seeing that a shiplap wall is more of a wooden board, it can also be used in the inside of our homes either to make the décor more exciting or keep the interior warm. Whether you use shiplap wood on the exterior or interior, it will give your home a farmhouse, cottage-like, or shabby chic feel, all of which you can never go wrong with.

Shiplap wall will either make your space cozy, warmer, brighter, or welcoming. The good thing about shiplap walls is that you don’t even have to use it throughout your home. You can use it on specific walls in specific rooms, you are rich or choices when it comes to shiplap walls.

You can also panel it on entire rooms like your living area, bathroom, kitchen, or bedroom. Shiplap is perfect for the living room walls if you need more style and warmth in that space. This is also advisable for your home office or home library. You can also enhance the shiplap walls in this space by painting the walls.

You can also use it to remodel your kitchen space preferably around your kitchen appliances, cabinets, and outlets, or on a focal point where guests and family members sit. In the bedroom, you can use it on the wall behind the bed to accent it. You can also use it all over the bedroom walls and paint a warm relaxing color to give it a distinct style.

If you would want your bathroom to have a beach effect then consider shiplap walls. You can have it on a single wall or in the entire space, the choice is yours. You can also use shiplap walls to turn your basement into a comfortable and adequately warm space.

Shiplap Walls Pros

Besides bring a significant change to your home, you don’t need a big investment to do it with shiplap walls. With $400-$500 you can set up shiplap walls in a few days. Not only does it no take long to install, it’s also easy to install.

Whether you use tongue and groove, MDF, or plain planks, the installation is fairly easy and straightforward with the right tools. You don’t even need to mess with the utilities or rip out the walls. It also is a fun family home improvement project.

Whether you DIY or hire a professional, the cost will be fairly worth it. If you are crafty, you can easily use several planks and transform your plain wall into impressive décor. If you don’t trust your craft, then you can easily hire a professional.

Shiplap walls are also very flexible because they can be used in the exterior or interior of your home. They are highly effective, efficient, and inexpensive which means they give you they give you the liberty to transform your living space.

How to Work With Shiplap Walls

Check Out Lumberyard Store

If you have a lumberyard local store near you, check them out. You can also check out places like Lowes or Home Depot, however, we found that lumberyard offer reasonable prices. While at the store ask for shiplap pine, tongue and groove, or their pre-primed pine version. If you would prefer to have a more reddish tone, use cedar.

Use Piecemealed Shorter Length Boards

It is wise to avoid warping in the lumber, in any case the longer boards you use the more this is likely to happen. This is why we strongly recommend using the shorter length boards. The idea is to make sure that the shiplap sits perfectly on the wall so make sure the boards are piecemealed.

Leave a Few Inches Along The Outside Perimeters

Depending on season and humidity changes, wood tends to expand which is why it is best to leave room to make sure they do. Leave an inch on the outside perimeters then cover it up with a piece of trim.

If you use the tongue and groove boards, you have the option to a more curved edge-v spacing or a nickel gap. However, you can use traditional plywood if you DIY your shiplap wood to build in the spacing.

Hide the Finish Nails Using Tongue and Groove Boards

In the shiplap walls installation process, there will be some nail holes and finish nails that are visible. Using the tongue and groove boards will allow you to easily hide the fastener head with a seamless look but only if you place the finish nails on the tongue of the board with a slight angle.

By doing this, you won’t need patching or wood filler to hide the nail holes. You also need to ensure that the board is applied on an identical level since they are not perfectly identical but you need to make sure that they appear so.

Attach the Boards At The Ceiling

When we focus on the wall, we tend to do so from the ceiling and then the wall seam, which is why if you want the boards to sit perfectly place them just the same. The good thing about ceilings, unlike floors, they are level.

What To Consider Before Installing Shiplap Siding

Shiplap Wood Grade

It is important to consider that not all shiplap wood is the same. There are higher and lower grades. The high grade wood doesn’t have knots and it is resistant to decay, rot, and insects. If you get the high grade, you won’ even have to add paint or color stains.

Low grade wood will have many knots and other blemishes making them less durable. With knots present on the shiplap, you will be required to paint it.

Your Location

The material you choose to use for your shiplap siding is highly influenced by where you live. For instance residents of the western US will be accustomed to cedar siding. Depending on what material is in your region, the costs will be cheaper.

House Footprint

Your house could be either square or rectangular shape, the number of corners you want to shiplap side will highly influence the amount of money you spend on shiplap installation. If your house has many cut outs, corners, and ornate architectural details, the labor costs will also be increased.


Depending on the work load that will sprout as a result of the shiplap siding, the labor costs will apply as per the contractor. Labor wages include the seasonal and location wage rates. This will also include the existing siding, wall repair, trim, soffits and new trims.

Your Budget

Let’s face it, he density of your pocket determines how far you will go with the shiplap siding. Shiplap siding will require you to buy the necessary materials and pay the contractor as well. All these things come at cost which means that you need to consider how much money you are willing to put into the shiplap siding project. We hope this cost guide will help put this into perspective.

Shiplap Durability

Compared to drywall, shiplap will last longer which is why you should consider the durability of the material you choose to use. Consider whether the material you choose is susceptible to water or flooding damage, stains or unhealthy molds.

Ease of Installation

Shiplap siding installation doesn’t last long, it can even take just a weekend to install the siding. In any case make sure you consider the ease of installation despite the material you are using. This also applies for the type of tools you will need.

So How Much Does Shiplap Siding Cost?

For starters, for shiplap siding to occur you need shiplap wood. In this cases, we recommend the real boards and they cost $2.50-$7.00 per sq. foot. When you buy the estimated amount of shiplap you require, the interior installation will range at a minimum of $1000.

For a single room, the rough estimate is $550-$1500 for the interior space. If you are looking to install shiplap on the exterior it will cost you about $4000 with a rough estimate for $2850-$7500 for homeowners. While estimating the amount of money you spend on shiplap siding, this will be based on the size of your space, type of wood, and the contractor billing.

Shiplap Board Cost Per Sq. Foot

The cost of these boards are influenced by the type and quality of the wood you select. It is also obvious that where you live highly affects the type of wood you choose. In any sense the geographical factor should influence the type of board you choose. Based on where you live, there is a popular type of wood and that will be the cheapest alternative.

The lower the quality of the wood you choose, that it the number of knots on the board, the cheaper they will be. This is the case whether its softwood or hardwood. This is also influenced by whether the wood was reconstituted from pulp. We highly recommend hardwood, pine, or cedar.


If you prefer hardwood, you should expect the price to range between $0.80-$4.00 per square foot. The price is influenced by the hardwood or manufacturer type. In any sense, this is the most popular type of shiplap.

Hardwood shiplap can be used in the interior or exterior and can also be easily accessed by the manufacturers and home owners as well. However, like we mentioned before, you need to make sure that board are almost perfectly level for them to perfectly sit on the wall. In this case carefully select your hardwood board since they are often gotten from different trees.


For decades, pine has been has been used for home siding and its still a great choice especially if you want a more impressive appearance. You can buy medium pine for $2.50-$4.00 per sq. ft. If you buy the pine boards in bundles of a 100 sq.ft, the average cost will be $270-$375 each.


This material also happens to be one of the most popular options for shiplap siding. The average cost for average quality cedar board per square foot is $2.50-$5.00 while the high quality will range at $4.00-$7.00.

Shiplap Siding Price for a 1000 Square Foot Space

Shiplap TypePer Square Foot For Entire Exterior
Hardwood$2.50 - $3.50$2500 - $3500
Pine $2.75 - $3.75$2500 - $4000
Cedar $2.50 - $7.00$2500 - $7000

Interior Shiplap Installation Costs

Interior shiplap siding is cheaper than exterior siding. For each board, whether hardwood, pine or cedar, the cost per square foot is between $2.00 – $7.00. This price range should also be inclusive if the size of the room you are looking to place the shiplap on.

If you do the shiplap siding on your own, it will cost you about $550 – $1500. This is inclusive of the tools you will need to DIY. However, if you have never done this before or lack the knowledge to do so, we advise calling a professional contractor instead.

In this case, when you get a contractor, the price range will increase to $1000 – $1750 because they come with their own materials and supplies based on the actual size of the project. This also means that the shiplap siding will appear more professional.

For interior siding, you have to make sure that you choose the material that will suit your style and needs well and fit your budget at the same time. The material can either be drywall, shiplap, or sheetrock.

Sheetrock and drywall are installed instead of plaster in most cases. If you go with this choice the walls will have a uniform, rectangular feel and still look brand new. Compared to the shiplaps, which do not appear uniform because if the knots and textures. However, among the three, shiplap achieve a more creative look.

If you are looking to achieve the cabin or cottage look, that is the wooden feel then shiplap would be your material of choice. If you want to paint the room after installing the siding then you should lean towards sheetrock and drywall.

One of the main reason why shiplap is expensive is because is made of wood which makes it more durable since its difficult to be damaged. This is why compared to drywall, its more expensive. The scratches won’t easily show on wood and they aren’t easy to dent.

Shiplap is also more water and moisture resistant. Sheetrock and drywall on the other hand can easily absorb moisture which makes it liable to easy damage which is why they are less expensive. At the end of the day before indoor siding, make sure you make your choices wisely. Would you rather save money, settle for less quality material only to incur future expenses? Or would you rather have something durable? Consider your options like your time and money depends on it.

Interior Wall Installation Cost For 200 Square Foot Room

Shiplap$1000 - $1950
Sheetrock$750 - $1250
Drywall$1000 - $1250

What About Tongue and Groove And Clapboard?

There is no denying that tongue and grooves looks a lot like shiplap. However even though it keeps elements away, shiplap is easier and cheaper to install. Tongue and groove uses rabbeted edges to connect the boards. It ranges between $2.00 – $3.50 per square foot.

Clapboard on the other hand is popular in old homes because it uses thin, overlapping planks. Compared to shiplap, they are much cheaper and give the wall a textured surface. The price range is $1.90 – $3.00 per square foot. Like shiplap, it will still protect the home from precipitation and harsh winds.

Price of Other Materials Necessary For Shiplap Siding

If you’re lucky enough, you may come across professionals with all the materials you need. If you are no that lucky, you will have to buy the essentials yourself. We have estimated how much some of the materials will cost for interior walls roughly 168 square foot.


You will need cladding to prevent damage from wind, water and other elements from getting to the shiplap. The cladding is placed over the shiplap, however, it is optional. If you need it, you can get it at $2-$5 per sq. ft. Cladding is best suited for those homeowners who need extra protection.


Nails are part of the materials you don’t need to worry about. This is because they are cheap, they range from $3 – $6. Depending on your project material, you can find nails that will fit the dimensions. You can get one 10lb or two 5lb boxes will fall under this price range and they will be enough for the project.


This is a wooden material laid under new walls or vinyl flooring. To attain this material, you will need about $70 – $95 depending on your supplier’s price tag. It will act as an extra layer of protection for the shiplap.


Before applying the shiplap wood, you need a material that will make the wall smooth first, basically you need a primer. One gallon goes for $25 and you would need about 4-5 gallons for a 168 square foot room. This means that from an even surface you could spend $110 – $120.

Wood Filler

You need to protect the wood by eliminating or covering any imperfections. Typically, the wood filler works best. It is made from wood shavings and paste to create a smooth surface. For this material you need about $10 – $20.


This is a putty you apply to wood, walls, and sheetrock to cover any cracks or holes. For a 168 square foot room you will need about two 8 oz. buckets. Depending on the brand you buy, the price ranges between $10 – $25.


This material is absolutely optional, we recommend it for those who wish to paint the wall after installing it. The finish allows you to achieve this and it costs about $22 – $26.

How Much Will it Cost To Install Exterior Siding?

Even though exterior siding also uses some of the materials as the interior installations it incurs more costs. The materials alone can range from $950 – $2650, when you include professional labor to the bill I will be $3100 – $5500. Therefore for a 2700 square foot home, the average cost will be $2850 – $7550.

To make sure you get the right amount of materials, make sure you subtract the size of your doors and windows to figure out the exact square footage of your home. This will allow you to know how much material you need for the exterior siding.

For the exterior siding, you need exterior stain, finish and roofing nails, and extra caulk. You need a professional contractor to identify the best installation method for your walls and the amount of damage your plywood has been subjected to before installing the siding.

The contractor will make sure the wood is cut into the right size and tell you all the materials you need. Hiring a professional means they will come with their own equipment to complete the project fast.

Cost For A 2700 Square Foot Home

DIY Cost$950 - $2650
Contractor/Professional Cost$3100 - $5500
Average Cost$2850 - $7550

Why Change Exterior Siding?

Well, the biggest reason of all is the desire for change, the second reason should be if your existing exterior siding is because of deterioration or damage. Since exterior siding is exposed to outside elements like water and humidity, they are prone to damage.

They can fade from sunlight exposure or damaged by the storms or deterioration from water infiltration. If damage is the main reason for your change, then you don’t have to change the entire siding but the just the ruined siding. In this case you can even DIY.

DIY Shiplap Siding

If you would rather save some money by doing-it-yourself, what you need to do is make sure you have the right tools and materials at hand. The supplies you need is wood, nails and the spacers. While the tools you will need is a foot level, able saw, tape measure, hammer, and pencil.

Use the table saw to cut up your desired strips with your desired width. Cut the wood into inches that will perfectly fit the wall you want to install the shiplap siding. Use the pencil and tape measure to find and mark the studs. Make sure they are a few inches apart.

Using the level, mark the studs with a vertical line on the wall. Nail the boards on these lines. You can glue the wood on the wall first and then nail it if you feel less confidence that the board will sit on the wall while you nail. To ensure that there are spaces in between the boards at all times, use the spacer.

If the wall has any light switches or electrical outlet, make sure you make a cut out for them so that it can efficiently sit on the wall near the boards. Once you are done, you can paint the shiplap as you please.

Video Resources

Hire a Professional or DIY?

Well, even though installing shiplap siding can be easy if you have the right tools, we highly recommend hiring a contractor or professional. A professional will make sure that the shiplap sits perfectly on the wall and has been properly aligned to protect your walls.

A professional will take time to carefully measure and cut the boards. They will also check the foundation of your home as well as the insulation. They will be able to prevent any damage. Choose the shiplap materials that suits your style and leave the professionals to make the shiplap add character yo your walls.

Pros and Cons of Shiplap Siding

Resistant o outside elements
Easy installation
Pleasing to the eye
X shiplap is more expensive than drywall and sheetrock for the internal walls
X when damaged, shiplap is hard to repair


This cost guide is meant to prepare you for shiplap siding physically and financially. However, we have not includes the cost of relocating, removing, modifying existing siding, or repairing the shiplap siding. The costs for remediation and testing of dangerous materials like lead. The sales tax on the supplies and materials is also no included, neither are the inspection nor permit fees.

This means that you need to make sure that the contractor gives you an exact estimate of how much they will charge you. Happy shiplap siding shopping!

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