With the cost of energy rising consumers are looking for a way to save money on their heating and cooling bills. One of the most obvious ways to do this besides heating and air conditioning is replacing your windows. Replacement windows can be a significant expense, and the biggest concern for people is finding a trustworthy window contractor.

Does the company have an online presence?

The first thing you should do is check google and see if the company has a website or business listing. There have been reports in the past of salespeople going door to door and taking thousands of dollars from consumers because they are not a real company.

So the company has a google listing now what?

You need to check the companies reviews. What are people saying? Just because a company has a bad review or two does not mean they are inadequate to deal with as it is impossible sometimes to meet everyone’s needs or expectations. Check and see if the negative reviews have been responded too this is usually a good sign whereas ignoring the review can mean the company is hiding something.

Pictures are important!

You want the window company to be proud of their work. Go through the pictures and make sure the quality of installs look good to you. If the company has no pictures or only one or two, this can be a concern.

Ok, I am happy with what I see so far so now it is time to book an estimate.

The company has an online presence and responds to reviews, and the pictures look good. It is time to call the company and book an appointment. Make sure the company answers with the company name and not just hello as you do want some professionalism when you could be spending thousands of dollars.

What are the best things to ask when booking an appointment?

1. Are the installers insured? – You do not want workers at your home if they have no insurance. If they get injured, it could be on you to pay costs.

2. What is your workmanship warranty? – A product warranty is completely different than a workmanship warranty. If the window has a lifetime warranty and the installation portion does not you will have to pay the costs for any work that is not done correctly in the future. A 5-year workmanship warranty is recommended.

3. How far away are you booking installations? – A reasonable wait time to have the work done is 6 to 8 weeks or sooner. If the company is booking months and months away, you want to make sure this is what you want.

Showrooms are overrated!

Just because you can go to a showroom and see all the beautiful displays setup does not mean that’s what your install will look. While it is nice to have the showroom, it is way more important to see the installation that has been completed. The window company should be happy to give you two or three. Look at them make sure capping and caulking are even and not sloppy. If you can talk to the customer and see how they feel about the install, this is the best referral you can get.

The Window Salesman is at your home!

When the window salesman comes to your home to give you a quote, there are some things to keep in mind.

1. What type of installation are you quoting me on? – There are two types of installs, retrofit where the windows are fit into your existing frames or full frame where your window frames are taken out and fit into the mainframe. Full Frame Is the more expensive option

2. What type of glass is in the thermal unit? – One of the main reasons to replace windows is energy efficiency so you want to be sure that you have glass that will perform. Low E and Argon are the most common with triple glass and krypton gas being some of the more expensive options.

3. Are all the options and windows put down on an estimate or contract? Putting a price on a business card is not what you want.

Do I give a deposit on my windows?

The answer is yes although I would not recommend giving more than 25 percent down. Replacement windows are custom made to the openings in your home, so the deposit covers part of the cost and protects the company until your install.

Make yourself comfortable with the buying process!

If you follow the tips above, buying windows will be more comfortable and more enjoyable. Great Northern Home Exteriors replacement windows recommend’s these tips. Some other things that can help are:

Better Business Bureau – definitely a plus when looking for a company to do work on your house.

Financing – Most finance companies look at the business to be sure they are stable this a plus to you.

Years in business – If a company has been in business for over five years, this is a great sign.

Best of luck in your window buying!