Let’s just put it out there: salesmen—particularly window salesmen—aren’t always honest. (Shocker, we know.) That’s why it’s important for Central PA homeowners who need replacement windows to arm themselves with techniques that will make sure they don’t get hoodwinked into overpaying or buying inferior windows.
So here is a list of questions you should ask any and every replacement window company you invite in your home. Asking these questions will put the salesman in the spotlight and uncover any hidden agendas or sales tricks he might try to utilize.
Question 1: “How Long Is Your Sales Presentation?”
Ask the window company this question BEFORE the appointment. The typical sales appointment for windows is a hair under three hours. THREE HOURS! That’s longer than the first Lord of the Rings movie, a 76er’s game, or a Bruce Springsteen concert. Maybe two.
Why are window sales appointments so long? Most companies do the “dog and pony” show. They pull out all the stops—and employ all the sales tricks—to get you to buy as much as absolutely possible right then and there. Companies with long presentations also tend to sell overpriced products—it takes awhile to wear you down and get you to agree to pay $20,000 for replacement windows!
Question 2: “What’s Your Markup?”
Here’s the thing. You probably don’t really know how much replacement windows cost in Central PA. And that’s okay—neither do most other homeowners. If you want a high-quality vinyl replacement window, it will run you roughly $449 to $699, including installation.
If the window salesman sitting on your sofa quotes you anything higher for a vinyl replacement window, the company he works for is price gouging. Plain and simple. The company does this because they likely have high overhead and need YOU to cover the costs.
When you ask this question, don’t be surprised when the salesman is caught off guard.
If the salesperson seems like a genuinely decent and honest person—but isn’t giving you a clear answer about mark up—he may not want to divulge what he believes is confidential company information. Tell him you’ve done researched and found out some companies mark up their prices three to four times. Tell him you get that mark-up is how companies make money, but that you also want to make sure you’re not getting ripped off.
Question 3: “Exactly How Energy Efficient Are Your Windows?”
The region you live in determines how energy efficient your windows should be. In Central PA, the Energy Star-recommended U-Factor is 0.30 or less (the lower the number, the better the efficiency). U-Factor will help keep heat in your home, so you’ll be more comfortable and save more money in the winter.
With this in mind, be careful of two things:
For more information about energy efficient replacement windows in Central PA, visit our Window Energy Efficiency page.
Question 4: “How Much Do You Charge Up Front?”
Most window companies in Central PA charge 30% to 50% before they start working. This is typical, and no reason to be wary. But if the company requires any more than half up front, run away. Far away. Companies demanding this amount before they start working either need you to foot the bill for the materials (which means they are not financially stable) or may take your money and run (which happens far more than you think).
Of course, there is the rare window company that charges NOTHING until AFTER the job is done to your satisfaction. Zen Windows PA is one of those companies. We don’t except a dime until we’re done with the job and YOU are satisfied. Visit our Why Choose Us page for more details.
Question 5: “Do You Have Proof Of Insurance & Referrals?”
Hiring a contractor who is properly insured is a MUST. If a contractor does not have liability insurance—and one of his installers gets injured on your property—the burden is on YOU and YOUR insurance to get it sorted out. And that’s when things can get ugly. It’s just not worth hiring an uninsured contractor because he may be a few bucks cheaper.
Also, be sure to ask the salesman for a list of referrals you can call. If a window company is good at what they do—and they truly care about customer satisfaction—they will have a list of customer references. If the salesman says his company does not have a list of referrals, it’s probably because they aren’t making their customers happy!
If you’d like a quote on superior vinyl replacement windows in Central PA—without the high prices, poor quality, and pushy salespeople—click here to request a quick and easy online quote. We’ll provide you with a 100% accurate quote on the best windows for your situation, as well as the information and guidance you need to make the best decision. No appointment necessary!