When I purchased the Boulevard Showhouse, one of our biggest challenges was the windows. They desperately needed to be replaced. But because the home is historically protected, it was a trickier process. The preservation society requires all renovations to remain true to the historic look of the home. So, I needed historically accurate windows that were also modern-era, energy efficient. Marvin Windows, thankfully came in with the perfect design. They presented it to Historic Houston, and now I have gorgeous windows that meet the needs of the preservation society and hot Houston weather.
Replacing the windows in your home can achieve many different things. If your current windows are older, investing in more energy-efficient options is truly that; an investment. Usually, an upgrade in your windows can almost pay for itself in less than two years.
New windows can also increase the value of your home, and we can’t forget the more obvious reason to purchase new windows; the right window choice will make your home more beautiful, whether it’s with traditional windows or a more upscale option like French casement windows.
While you may think that replacing your windows is a simple thing, there are quite a few things to keep in mind when you decide to take this home improvement step. Let’s look at 6 things to consider before purchasing your new windows. Courtesy of our trusted partners and custom window experts at Portella.
1. If possible, take your time
You have many options to choose from when buying replacement windows, but you may run across a sales person that wants you to believe that the only way to get the best deal possible is to make your purchase right now.
This is wrong. It’s their job to make sales for the company they represent, and it’s in their best interest for you to purchase immediately. However, if you take the time to shop around, you’ll know you’re getting the best deal possible on the exact windows you want.
If the first salesperson you talk to has the best deal on the market for you, they’ll still have it in a week…or a month.
2. Do Your Homework
When you make your decision on which company you want to use, ask them for the contact information of some previous customers. Once they provide it, make a few calls to find out how satisfied those customers are.
You’ll learn more from previous customers than you will from the company itself about how they do business, and how they treat customers like you.
If they don’t have any previous customers for you to speak with, this could be a large red flag; in that case, be careful!
3. Compare warranties
Make sure you know how the warranty on your new windows works. You’ll see “Lifetime warranty” listed for many of them, but every company has a different definition of “lifetime”.
Some companies will only send you replacements for any parts that need attention, but getting those parts installed will be left up to you. Others will cover everything from defects to broken glass.
Read the warranty of the windows you select so you know exactly what’s being offered. Once you’ve completed these steps, it’s time for the fun part of the process…choosing your new windows.
4. What kind of windows do you have now?
No matter if your current windows are older or not, the windows you currently have may affect the choices available in some cases.
Specifically, if you want to replace your current windows with as little damage to the structure of your home as possible, you might choose retro-fit windows. With this process, the frame of your current windows stays in place, and the new windows are made to fit inside them.
If you have wood windows, there’s a slightly different method to retro-fitting than if you have metal windows. It’s best to consider your current window material when shopping for your new windows and ask the company you’re dealing with for assistance.
5. What kind of material do you want your new windows to be made from?
You can choose any material you want for your new windows, but each type comes with positives and negatives.
Wood windows can cost more if you need special sizes, which is often the case when you’re retrofitting into your old window frames, but they do give you the smallest change to the current look of your home if you already have wood windows.
Metal windows can be a great choice, especially if you choose to go with energy-efficient glass options. They require no painting, and newer options like these steel windows have great curb-appeal, and are available in any size you need, with the added bonus of energy efficiency.
6. What kind of glass do you want in your new windows?
There are choices to be made here as well, with different types of glass available for your new windows.
Single, double and triple glazed windows are available, and newer windows will most likely be more energy-efficient than your current windows. Ask for the energy efficiency ratings for the different types of glass that are available for your windows of choice, and ask about the benefits and drawbacks of each.
Some energy efficient choices may cost a bit more, but the savings on your monthly energy bills will quickly pay that investment back.
Purchasing new windows is a great way to make your home more beautiful, and it could actually save you money in the long run.