Living in Sacramento, in the capitol of one of the most desirable states to live in, most homeowners have high standards and expectations. They want the best for their family and their home, but they also don’t want to spend too much. Unlike the politicians who seem to enjoy spending other people’s money without thought or concern about how much they waste, you’re not like that. So when you realized that it just might be time to consider replacement windows or doors in your home, you immediately thought about how much it would cost.
This is a common concern that West Sacramento homeowners have with regard to their home and maintaining it, yet there are some things that you just can’t avoid, like home improvement projects every once in a while. For some, it’s about remodeling the kitchen. For others, they want a new bathroom installed. For still others, they might invest in their outdoor living space. All of these are designed to allow them more enjoyment and comfort at home.
So when you realize that your old windows or cracked door that just won’t seat right in the frame needs to be replaced, you will tend to focus on the overall cost.
First, consider this as an investment in your home. Few people realize it at first, but improving the quality and condition of your home is going to have a direct impact on its overall value. If you try to save the highest amount of money, then you’re going to end up with inexpensive, entry-level windows.
Still, that doesn’t mean that you have to settle for spending too much on any replacement windows or doors. Here are 5 ways that you can save money on your replacement windows and doors in the Sacramento area.
1. Understand energy efficiency. No, we don’t have to worry about the harsh winters that our counterparts to the north have to, and we don’t deal with the oppressive summer heat like the southern part of the state, but that doesn’t mean we don’t rely on heat or air conditioning during different times of the year.
Energy efficient windows will generally cost more up front, but they will help you save money on your utility bills throughout the year. When your home is more energy efficient, it will actually cost you less to heat or cool it throughout the year. While that’s not a short-term cost savings, it can add up when you consider that windows and doors today should last for about 15 to 20 years.
2. Shop around. There are actually quite a few window and doors companies that serve the West Sacramento area. Don’t settle on the first one unless you know that they have the selection you’re looking for, the experience to answer your questions, and the support to ensure that you’re going to be taken care of, not just while you’re looking, but even after they are installed.
3. Make sure that you understand installation costs and procedures. Too many people make a common mistake of purchasing their windows from one of the national major home improvement companies, thinking that they’ll get the lowest prices. You will. But you’re also going to get the lowest quality windows (though they won’t tell you that).
Then you have to consider the cost of installation. Some companies will include this in the price of their windows. Others won’t. However (and this is a big ‘however’), when you purchase your windows from one of those major companies, they subcontract out the installation to a third party contractor.
Will they have the experience that you deserve to install your windows? What about custom sized windows or altering the size of your existing windows? Will they have the right background and experience? Just because this major company uses them doesn’t mean they’re going to be qualified.
If you end up with problems during the installation process, it could cost you a lot more money than you anticipated. But if you choose a company that has their own installers as part of their staff, trained and certified to install the brand of windows that they sell, you’ll know that what you pay for will be all that you need.
4. If cost is a serious concern, make sure that you choose replacement window sizes that match the ones you’re replacing. This means that even though you may want to replace that double hung window over the kitchen sink with a casement, choosing the same size window will mean that the installer won’t have to alter the frame.
If any other work is required, such as increasing the size of the window frame or making it smaller, that’s going to add to the cost of replacement windows.
5. Do it yourself? Many people will make an effort the install their replacement doors, if not their windows, too, by themselves. If you have a lot of experience with carpentry, then this might be something that you wouldn’t have a problem doing.
However, if you do not have a lot of skill and experience, even a door that is slightly off level might not close or open properly. A window that isn’t installed correctly might not function properly and it could leak.
What about insulation? Do you know enough about insulation to make sure that your energy efficient windows are saving you the money you expect? If you don’t insulate around the frame properly, you could be losing a lot of money, and reducing the return on your investment.
Finally, many window and door manufacturers require that installers be certified to install their particular windows and if they are not, these manufacturers may not honor the warranty that they provide for their windows.
The more you know about replacement windows and doors, installation, and energy efficiency, the more money you’ll be able to save in the long run. Sometimes making a more significant investment now will help you save a lot more over time. When you realize that you could end up saving money every month for the next 15 to 20 years on your utility bills, you’ll realize why making to right investment now is so important.