Whether you’ve just moved into a new home or you’re preparing to sell, there’s never a wrong time to replace your windows. Installing new windows yields one of the highest returns on investment as well as lowering your monthly energy bills. That’s a win, win. Oh, and they look great – win, win win!
At Porch, we empower homeowners by providing the tools and confidence to hire great home improvement professionals for their projects. Make sure you’re prepared for every stage of your window installation with our informative guide step-by-step guide.
If you’ve submitted a project request on Porch, expect to hear from a few contractors over the next 24-48 hours.
If you haven’t:
When the professionals call, these are the questions you should be asking:
- What is your company name, location and phone number?
This information allows you to vet the professional once you’re off the phone. This can be done by viewing their profile page on Porch (this will be listed on your project page) and by searching for reviews on other sites such as BBB.
- Are you and your subcontractors licensed, bonded and insured?
Bottom line is, if the contractor answers no to this question, you should not hire them.
- When would you be able to start a project like mine?
This question will determine the availability of the professional. If you have a specific schedule you need to stick to but the professional won’t be available for a few months, it may be worth considering other options before requesting an estimate. On the other hand, if you need to arrange financial aid before the project starts but the professional has a large job planned for the time that you’d like to start, you will need to know this.
- Would you be able to provide references for previous clients?
Like licensing and bonding, references are an extremely good vetting tool. If a professional cannot provide any references for clients, it’s not a good sign.
These are questions relevant to all window installation projects but you may have additional questions that are important to you. Asking questions gives the contractor a better perspective of your priorities and will enable you to determine who is right for your project.
You can check whether a license is valid by typing, “check contractor’s license in your state” into a search engine. If you have any questions about this, you can contact the Porch Homeowner Support team for help.
Having a clear vision for what you want from your new windows is crucial to finding the right professional for the installation. Take a look at the different Window Options For Your Home.
When selecting the style of the windows you want to install, beware of climate. A picture window or a skylight may look beautiful but in the summer it will make your home really hot without the proper window treatments. A good contractor will be able to advise the the best treatments for your windows. We’ve listed the pros and cons of popular Window Treatments so you can make the most informed decision.
One of the best things about window installation is the fact that styles can be modified to fit any budget. A way to make your windows more affordable is by changing the frame. For example, vinyl and aluminium window frames will be less expensive than wooden frames. Take a look at this article to Keep Your Window Project on Budget.
Here is an idea of how much each window will cost to install. Bare in mind that it will be more expensive to install a window that’s a different size than your existing one than it is to replace it with a similar sized window. This is an estimate of the cost of materials and labor for your window installation:
Aluminium $400-$650, Fibreglass $800-$1,400, Vinyl $350-$600, Wood $550-$850
Aluminium $500-$800, Fibreglass $850-$1,450, Vinyl $400-$650, Wood $700-$1,050
Aluminium $400-$650, Fibreglass $750-$1,200, Vinyl $380-$610, Wood $650-$1,050
Aluminium $800-$1,350, Fibreglass $1,100-$1,900, Vinyl $750-$1,250, Wood $1,150-$1,850
We advise requesting estimates from at least 3 contractors. Not only will this give you an idea of the cost, it will allow you to get to know the contractor and their ideas for your project. This is crucial to selecting the right contractor for you.
Here are a few questions you should make sure you ask the contractor during your first meeting:
- What is the payment schedule and process?
- What warranty do you offer for your workmanship and materials?
- How long have you worked with your subcontractors or crew?
- Do you specialize in window replacement?
- How long do you predict my project will take from ordering the windows to completion?
- Do you include any trim refinishing or painting in your fee?
- Can you provide any customer references?
Once you’ve accepted a bid from a contractor, you’re well on your way to starting the project. Before any money is exchanged, make sure you have a written contract.
The most important things to look for in your window installation contract are:
- A payment schedule
- Details of materials used and their cost and warranty
- Permit information
- Warranty of workmanship
Remember: If you have a change of scope of the contract, it’s extremely important to draw up a ‘Change Order’ form.
Preparing for your project to start
Now you’ve scheduled a time for your window replacement project to start, make sure you prepare your home. The following preparations will ensure that your home is safe for your family and the contractors and that none of your property is damaged.
- Make sure the room and hallways are clear of obstructions and furniture
- Trim any foliage that may be obstructing the windows
When the project is complete
Once your project is complete, consider asking your contractor for recommendations on how to maintain your new windows. For example, many professionals recommend not cleaning your skylights as often as other windows. Here are a couple of questions that you can ask the contractor after your project is complete:
- How do you recommend cleaning my windows and how often?
- Where can I review your work?
If you’ve followed these steps to find a great contractor then you’re well on your way to a stress-free roof replacement. At Porch, we understand that accidents happen. If any damage is caused to your property as a result of the professional we can help you make this right. Read about the terms of our Guarantee.
If you have any questions throughout your remodel, the Porch Home Assistant Team will be happy to help. They can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.