Today's windows can become the defining centerpiece of any room, especially kitchens or bathrooms in need of a fresh new look, not to mention more natural light. Windows, doors with windows, or even a whole wall of windows add drama to the drabbest of interiors. Window updates to a kitchen or bath can result in a major improvement in terms of a fresh look and feel to a home. When making decisions about window upgrades it's important to not only consider aesthetics but also practical issues such as ventilation, security and proper placement.
Today's windows also can provide added peace and quiet for active homeowners, as modern multi-paned windows provide greater sound-proofing benefits, not to mention improved energy-efficiency, as compared with older single-pane windows.
Investing in home improvement not only reduces energy costs, but increases everyday comfort, both factors that can add value to a home at resale time. According to a Freddie Mac homebuyer's guide, if a home has been well-maintained, it can command a much higher price than the same home with fair to poor maintenance. The guide states that an older home with modest construction features might have a remodeled kitchen, or new insulated glass replacement windows that would add to its value.
Experts at the Pella Window Store say for many people, the decision to replace a window is more than performance based, there's value in how it looks, too:
* Is there peeling, chipping or deterioration on the inside or out?
* Is it easy to open, or is it painted or nailed shut or inoperable?
* Does it collect moisture in between the panes?
* Can you feel a breeze inside the home even when the window is closed?
* Is the style outdated?
* Is it poorly placed?
* Is the symmetry of the room off because of one window?
The ability to clean a window without much hassle is another major contributing factor in deciding if it's time for replacement. Today's time-pressed consumers enjoy the convenience of virtually maintenance-free aluminum-clad exteriors, durable fiberglass composite products and other pre-finished interior and exterior window options, which eliminate the need for painting and scraping windows and doors.
In addition to added beauty, energy-efficiency and convenience, other trends featured in window and door updates for kitchens and baths include:
Many people want bigger windows and better views from their kitchen sink. Today's awning-style windows allow for an expanded view, without a post or column in the middle of the window. Another popular choice over the sink is a casement window that is easier to open and close than other styles, thanks to the convenience of a fold-away crank, providing an unobstructed view.
A popular evolution in windows is the shade-between-the-glass concept that offers a visually clean, clutter-free look for the window and shade. With this style, blinds and grilles are tucked away neatly between panes of glass, which means no dusting! This type of unit provides privacy when needed for kitch