Eight Tips for Saving Money on Replacement Windows
December 15, 2009
Are you thinking of replacing some or all of the windows in your home? Whether your objective is to save energy, increase comfort, or improve curb appeal, new windows can be a good investment, especially now while you may be eligible for a tax credit of up to $1,500. Follow these eight tips to get the biggest bang for your window buck.
Spend Wisely on New Windows
- Decide between do-it-yourself or professional installation. Do-it-yourself (DIY) is clearly less expensive because you provide the labor. However, the downside of DIY is that if you damage a window, frame or wall during installation, or if your window leaks after installation, you have no recourse other than yourself.
- Professional window replacement is usually quoted by the number, size and type of windows and includes the cost of the labor. What this means for budget purposes is that you are not likely to pay more if you replace your windows in one, two, or more installations.
- If you cannot replace all your windows at once, here are some options to consider when your primary objective is energy savings and personal comfort:
- Close off rooms that you seldom use to cut down on heat loss
- Replace windows in rooms that you use the most before replacing others
- If all windows are used equally, first replace west facing windows or those that face into the prevailing wind direction
- If your primary objective is to increase curb appeal, replace all windows that face the street. When putting your home up for sale, new windows, especially those facing the street, can pay big dividends in terms of increased sale price.
- Whether you are installing new windows yourself or hiring a professional window installation service, you can often get a discount by purchasing multiple windows at the same time.
- Purchase the best windows you can afford. The difference in price between the most and the least energy efficient windows comes down to a few cents a day when factored over the life of the windows, while the amount you will save in utility bills over that same time can be substantial.
- Be sure to look for windows that qualify for the American Recovery and Reinvestment Tax Act of 2009 tax credits. You can receive thirty percent of the purchase price of qualified windows, up to a maximum of $1,500. Note that windows purchased after June 1, 2009 have a stricter criteria for qualification than those purchased earlier in the year. Also note that the tax credit excludes the cost of installation.
- Check with the ENERGY STAR rebate finder, or your utility company, and city and state government websites for possible additional rebates or credits.