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Investing in Windows for Home Resale Value

Whether your home is of the upscale or midrange variety, replacement windows are one of the most effective ways of readily increasing its value. Curb appeal, home insulation, energy-efficiency, cost-effectivity, and space utilization are all traits that need to be considered when it's time to invest in replacement windows. A window that meets all these qualities will give you the most leverage at the negotiating table. This article is going to show how important each of these qualities are in upping the asking price of your home, and how they compel prospective buyers into sealing the deal. 

Home Insulation & Energy-Efficiency

Certain windows are more appropriate for certain climates; composite windows, for instance, are resistant to moisture, thermal buckling, and any deformation and discoloring. Apart from new replacement windows providing your home with year round protection, their insulation performance is a key factor for a successful resale. Home inspectors working with potential buyers will take note of your home's poor insulation performance which could discourage them from meeting the asking price. Poor home insulation means higher energy costs and maintenance. Energy Star discloses that having windows with their ratings can reduce annual energy costs by $500. Making clear to prospective buyers just how much they can save on energy costs by living in your home will play a huge role in their decision making. Wood windows are the best insulators but replacing a single with a double-glazed window, or a double glazed with a triple-glazed window can improve your home's insulation by 50%. 

Cost vs Value

When it's time to sell the house, vinyl replacement windows can recoup 72.9-74.9% of their cost while wood replacement windows can see returns of 71.9-78.8%, according to national estimates. Generally speaking, you can recoup 60-90% of your replacement window investment. If you have Energy Star-rated windows installed in your home, you can even qualify for a rebate from your utility company if they're affiliated with Energy Star. The average cost of purchasing and installing energy-efficient replacement windows is within the $7,000-$11,000 range. A near 80% return on your investment, in addition to Energy Star-affiliated rebates and hundreds of dollars worth of energy savings, you can eventually exceed returns for your investment. A major advantage of installing replacement windows is that they are much cheaper and quicker to install than new construction windows.

More advantages of installing new replacement windows:

Better home equity: Investing in newly installed windows adds equity to your home. Increasing home equity reduces your mortgage and, depending on your contract, can lower your monthly interest rates.

Increases home equity loans: Whether you want to utilize your home equity in the form of a home equity loan or a home equity line of credit, installing new windows can up the amount that you're allowed to tap into.

Lower mortgage insurance premiums (MIP): Banks and lenders increase the mortgage insurance premiums on high-risk mortgagors. Installing storm windows or impact-resistant windows lowers risk and your lenders will, in turn, charge you less for MIP, resulting in either a lower down payment, lower monthly interest rates or lower owed principal.

More Storage and Living Space

Nothing excites a buyer more than efficiently utilized storage space in compact areas that otherwise would have been useless. Bay or bow windows particularly shine here and are the most substantial window investment that can be made for a home because of their beauty, wide visual access to the outside, optimal air ventilation, optimal light exposure, and creation of new living or storage space. Bay or bow windows protrude beyond the home's siding to create an interior alcove shape big enough for additional storage space. Bay or bow windows make for many window-and-seat combinations such as dining seats, leisure seats, decorative shelves, indoor gardens, and bookshelves. The window-and-seat combinations often include storage cabinets underneath the seat, and this will leave a lasting impression on prospective buyers.  

Curb Appeal

Windows are one of the first if not the first things prospective buyers see when they're passing by your home, which means they have to be attractive enough to draw them in. All newly installed windows look attractive as long as they match the rest of your home, but wood windows are the most attractive window material by far. This is because their authentic appearance and insulation properties exceed that of vinyl, fiberglass, aluminum, and others. Wood is, however, the most expensive window material, but there are alternatives in vinyl and fiberglass with finishes that retain the look of wood veneer. Another noteworthy investment is clad-wood which has a vinyl or aluminum exterior and a wood interior. Clad-wood windows combine wood's excellent insulation with the strength, durability, and color variety of vinyl or aluminum for a product that has the best of both worlds.

Theoretically, the curb appeal of windows can be ranked in order of beauty, but they can interchange because of the various customizations, colors, hardware finishes, frame finishes, and moldings applicable to them, with the exception of wood which is predominantly the most beautiful material.

Curb appeal in ascending order:

  1. Aluminum windows
  2. Fiberglass windows
  3. Composite windows
  4. Vinyl windows
  5. Clad-Wood windows
  6. Wood windows

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