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This is the most common question people have when shopping for windows. Generally speaking, the price of replacement windows can be viewed in terms of the following:
As with most products, quality materials and installation come at a higher price. However, markup is more subjective, greatly affected by overhead. Marketing and commission expenses are the number one and two reasons why several companies offer a better but overpriced product. So-called high-end companies set aside a large marketing budget spending over a million dollars a year on TV, radio, magazine ads, billboards and celebrities to bring their product to market. Celebrities and radio personalities mostly know nothing about windows and doors. They simply endorse products to make money. Of course, the added overhead raises your price.
Trust and fear are the tools used to coerce those who lack the information important to making an intelligent buying decision. Branding and time in business breed trust that the product and installation is of the best quality. But, at what cost? Fear of making the wrong decision for such a big-ticket purchase often pressures homeowners into overpaying for what they could get for around 33% less. Tactics, such as requiring both spouses be present during the initial consultation, provide their sales team the best opportunity to “one call close” the deal. They realize that, with time to think, the buyer is unlikely to call back for an overpriced window.
On the other side of the spectrum, cheap materials and installation more often than not result in the lower performance of an inferior product -what may be referred to as entry level replacement windows. These windows and doors may “contain some” better materials but are seldom manufactured from 100% of today’s most durable raw materials. If they were, the cost of manufacturing would drive the sell price up. Like anything else, the cost of manufacturing depends on the cost associated with labor, materials and mark up. Cutting cost on manufacturing materials and paying installers a lower price per window are where low-priced contractors cut cost so they can still make the profit necessary to hang on as a business. These contractors often offer one manufacturer’s window in a “good”, “better” “best” option. How can one manufacturer’s product meet the need of every home and every homeowner? Besides, all three options are nearly always covered under the same limited warranty. They are mostly the same entry level product with extra bells and whistles. Many of these low-price contractors and manufacturers go out of business because their expenses outpace profit leaving buyers without recourse when replacement parts are required down the road. We urge buyers to beware of large discounts and promotions. Most contractors simply inflate the “retail” or “list” price to allow the sales team to provide an eye opening “discount” to influence a favorable outcome in their favor. Buyers mostly end up paying for the “free installation,” iPad and/or 30-50% discount.
Finally, entry level windows and doors are often backed by a limited lifetime warranty not worth the paper on which it’s printed. Remember, the first word in these “lifetime” warranties is “LIMITED.” Look for the exclusions (aka fine print) page or pages. Most homeowners do not know the most common problems with vinyl for example; and therefore, do not know what language they should be looking for (Crack, Warp & Fade) and what language is marketing or misleading “fluff.”
At Truwin, we bring an educational approach to your kitchen table. We require neither a decision on the first visit nor that both decision makers be present (though it’s beneficial to the buyer(s) for both to have the opportunity to ask questions and understand the full picture). We offer better windows and doors from several manufacturers with an honest discount at a fair price. We can truly assess which of our several manufacturer’s products best fits your home and your needs from a design, function, energy efficiency, security, and budgetary standpoint. Our owners, sales team and installers have over 75 years’ experience. Our vision is honesty and transparency at a fair price. Simply put, Truwin believes in offering the best value for today’s better windows and doors. A true win!
*Ave price per window includes material, tax, labor and haul away of construction debris. As a rule of thumb, the price per window may be +/- 10% depending on design options such as frame color, size, divided lites/grids, window style (i.e. casement, double, hung, single hung, picture, slider, etc.) and number of architectural shapes (i.e. arch tops, circle tops, trapezoids etc.)
The reality is most buyers invite 3 or 4 entry level window companies to their home and are shown the old “good,” “better,” “best” options of a few entry-level windows from which they make a decision. The majority never see a truly better, much less, high-end window. If you really want to make an informed comparison of the most important differences between entry-level, mid-range and high-end windows available in today’s market, we suggest you invite Gulf Coast Windows, Amazing Exteriors, Pella and/or Renewal by Andersen and compare their offering(s) to one of the many entry-level contractors.
Write down what is most important to you in your new windows and take notes on what the sales reps say that seems to make theirs the right choice. Then, call us. We will gladly provide a free, objective comparison and answer all of your questions.
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