Should I Change my Windows or Hire a Local Window Contractor?
Johnson Exteriors replaced aluminum window & door wraps and cedar siding in this Brooklyn Park, MN home
For the beginner, changing some or all windows is more than the usual undertaking. In fact, the project turns out to be rather massive. Yes, it is possible to simply purchase the windows and after that install them yourself. This is a shortcut I would not recommend.
So please, unless you are an experienced window specialist, do not try to handle the job yourself. For most homeowners, finding a window company that is competent, seasoned and state-licensed is the most effective strategy.
There’s one more factor to consider. Do you know the quickest way to void your window’s warranty? In the event that you change the windows yourself, your will no longer have a valid warranty and more than likely the manufacturer’s warranty will be voided because the windows were not installed properly by a licensed pro. However, by hiring a professional, they are responsible for any mistakes with no charge to you. This covers you in the event they were measured wrong, fall and crack, or cause damage to your windows.
What is Included with Replacing Windows?
Some homeowners are confused with all the specifications like U-Value, R-Value, Low E glass, Energy Star-rated, etc.
Make sure you are dealing with a contractor that takes the time to properly explain all of this information to you and to make sure you understand it. In today’s market, you should use this formula to determine the price of installing new windows:
The actual cost should include the windows (material only), the labor to properly install them per state building code and per manufacturers specifications, removal of the old windows from the property, building permit (usually only if creating a new opening), cleanup, and warranty information from the contractor and the manufacturer of the windows.
How Much Does Window Replacement Cost?
The primary thing as a homeowner, is to determine which type of material (such as wood, vinyl, or other) you will use for your window. Also, consider the style of windows (casement, double hung, slider and picture) you want to purchase. Window costs will vary greatly depending on what your decision is, but traditionally, casement windows cost more than sliders.
You also need to determine exactly how many windows you want to replace. Do you want to replace a couple windows, or does it make more sense to uniformly replace all of them? Think about the style and the design of your windows that are current and decide whether you want the same kind and style of windows or something more modern. Remember, if you want something different, this may require changing the size of your existing opening – and this will be an additional cost.
Have a professional window company supply you with a breakdown of costs, as well as options to choose from. They must be willing to meet with you to sit down and go over everything. But always remember, you get what you pay for.
In other words, do not expect to get a super cheap deal from a company and expect them to stay in business long enough for you to call them back when you might need them later. Suppose 10 to 15 years down the road, you have an issue with your windows. There’s a pretty strong chance they won’t be in business at that time. This is a reminder of why the best window contracting companies are at the top of their profession.
Be sure to ask about financing. Some companies provide very good in-house financing options. A reliable window contractor may consent to this easily, without reluctance, and carry on setting a time that is mutually agreeable.
Resolve Any Loose Ends Before Starting Work
When you have reached an agreement with your contractor, ensure that all of these issues have been resolved to your own satisfaction. It is critical to understand what kind of guarantee is included – which absolutely must be in writing.
Good windows are built to last a long time, so the warranty (which should also outline the length of time it is effective) should be provided by all window manufacturing companies.
Most windows that are wood have a few options of exterior cladding, and supply a 10-year guarantee. The three heavy hitters in the timber window marketplace are Pella, Andersen, and Marvin (all having a 10-year guarantee).
Do You Understand Your Contract and Terms?
Before signing the contractual agreement, ensure that both you and your contractor comprehend the agreement thoroughly and are pleased with the cost, producer, warranty and installation time-frame. If you don’t completely understand the guarantee, ask for a thorough explanation.
It is unwise to cover the full amount of the project in question. Rather, wait until the work is finished to your own satisfaction before you pay the remaining balance. The majority of companies require a down payment. You can discuss this together with your contractor but generally, this amount is no more than 50 percent of the contracted cost.