The home improvement industry as a whole is very competitive, particularly due to the lack of home equity available for homeowners to be able to draw from to complete larger home improvement projects.
The fact that this industry is so competitive with some “fly by night” organizations can often breed bad vendors and contractors, leaving consumers with the challenge to do their homework and ask the right questions to get the best value, quality, service and price, a combination often difficult to come by.
Regarding the replacement window industry specifically, contractors or companies with poor reputations are reflective from the design consultant all the way up the proverbial management food chain.
Take time to invest in a reputable company with a proven product so you only have to make an investment once. The following six tips will give you confidence in weeding out bad companies and products from good ones.
You may not be the type of person who loves the process of interviewing and gathering estimates, but when it comes to purchasing replacement windows for your home, you can’t be lazy about this critical first step. Obtain at least three estimates as the more information and pricing you obtain, the easier it will be to make an educated decision.
Having more than one estimate in hand also offers negotiation control. This process is not difficult, just a little time consuming. Search for companies that offer complimentary in-home design consultations.
Before meeting with the first design consultant, evaluate what windows you believe require replacement. Design consultants may find other windows that need replacement, which you can make the decision at that time given their reason for the recommendation, but at least you have done a review of your windows ahead of time to make the best personal purchasing decision.
Don’t automatically purchase the most expensive replacement window due strictly to brand. There are always other options that still blend high quality manufacturing with better value. Ask such questions during your estimates.
Avoid signing up with the first vendor who gave you the lowest estimate. Oftentimes you can negotiate for a lower price unless the company happens to have a price promise assurance program, which offers great face value. Use an online guide.
If you search, there are reputable and quality window manufacturers in the marketplace. You can typically get the best deal by removing the “middleman” out of the cost when you work with a company that both manufacturers and installs. This tends to achieve the best price with the fastest installation timeframe.
Vinyl UPVC windows are known to be more durable than wood and they are also less expensive to manufacturer, thereby passing the savings on to you. Wood can rot over time when exposed to the weather elements and vinyl tends to have a longer lifespan.