‘Your neighbor just ordered all new replacement windows with us. If you buy yours right now, we can combine them with their order and give you a buy-in-bulk discount saving 50 percent!’
Yeah, sure pal.
And that’s only one of all the sneaky sales tactics that many contractors use to lure you into buying replacement windows from them. Their favorite phrase is discount. Treat that as a four-letter word. If you hear the word “discount” sirens should immediately go off in your head.
But how do you identify these replacement window companies beforehand?
Typically these are the guys with the crazy-long ridiculous sales presentations where they beat you to a pulp, until you’re forced to say ‘yes.’ They’ll be in your home for 3 hours, talking about common interests before they even start the actual presentation.
They’ll jump on top of the window, stand on it, take a bat or hammer and bang on the glass, take out these fancy light machines and even a heat gun or scanner to show you that your windows are cold. When they’re done, they’ll make you feel guilty if you tell them ‘no.’
In reality, all replacement windows are durable. Double-pane glass IS standard and Low-E and argon gas is the norm in the Northeast. Don’t fall for these scams and remember, the key factors you should be considering is the window performance, installation process and the warranty.
The following are the sneaky sales and marketing tactics that companies will use to pressure you into buying replacement windows right then and there:
On the Sales Side …
The Neighborhood Replacement Window Discount
The salesperson will tell you that their company is doing a job in the neighborhood and you’ll receive a price drop if you also replace your windows. Typically they claim it’s a 30 to 50 percent discount off the ticketed price.
Half off? Really?
Anybody that’s going to give you a 50 percent discount on top of the price they just quoted you, is lying to you. Reputable companies might give you a discount, but they’re generally no more than 10 percent.
The strategy of these companies is marking up their prices then pretending to offer you a great deal, but the price they come down to is their regular price. If you’re hearing, ‘your project will be around $35,000, but we can have you save up to 50 percent,’ you should know something is up.
The Appointment Saver Discount
The salesperson will say, ‘We’re here now. Write a deposit check now and you can save.’
No, no and no. It’s bogus. Don’t feel bad when you tell them no.
The Model Home Program
‘We want your home to be the model home on this street. All of your neighbors will want to buy new windows, so we’ll give you a 30 to 50 percent discount.’
That’s probably one of the most ridiculous tactics. Who says that your neighbors are going to even buy new windows now, just because you had new replacement windows installed on your house.
Time Management Discounts
Did we say that the model home program was the most ridiculous?
‘If you give us a deposit right now, I’ll drop you 30 percent.’
Please. They just want you to write them out a check to meet their quota for the month.
‘I Have to Talk to My Manager’
After already giving you two price drops they’ll pull the, ‘Let me check with my manager to see what else we can do for you.’
The salesperson will go outside or to their car and pretend to call their boss, but they’re likely chatting with their partner or spouse about dinner plans.
All Replacement Window Warranties are Basically the Same
This is 100 percent false. Warranties vary between each window manufacturer. There are 10-year warranties, 20-year warranties, 30-year warranties and limited lifetime warranties. Pay close attention, some of them are also pro-rated, meaning after 5 to 10 years, they’re worth nothing.
Some manufacturers will only cover hardware. Others won’t honor the warranty if you’re within a 5-mile radius of a body of water. That includes, lakes, ponds, rivers, creeks, streams, and obviously the ocean, so if you live on Staten Island, make sure you research your warranty. If you’re not on Staten Island, chances are there is some form of water nearby that will cancel out your the warranty being offered.
On the Marketing Side …
Buy 2 Replacement Windows, Get 1 Free
Do you really think you’re getting something for free? What the company is doing is marking up the other 2 windows to make you think you’re getting the third for free, but really you’re paying full retail price.
Window Trade In Program
‘Give us your old windows and we’ll give you money back!’
Your aluminum windows are pretty much worthless. The most you’d get is $5 per window. For wood? They’ll just throw them into a dumpster. If the company is telling you otherwise, it’s another false claim.
The 1-Year Price, the 30-Day Price and the Today Price
No company should be giving you 3 different prices depending on when you want to do your project. Unsurprisingly, the cheapest price will be the “Today Price.” It’s completely absurd. We at The Men With Tools give you a set price that’s good from the day we meet you and it’s good for a full year.
‘Your Windows Will Pay for Themselves in the Next 3 Years’
This is completely bogus. On average you will save between 8-20% annually on your energy bills and based off those numbers, it generally takes anywhere between 5 to 12.5 years for your windows to pay for themselves. Don’t fall for these ridiculous claims, however the good news is there are only two types of home improvement projects you can do that will pay for themselves over time while also adding value and that’s replacing the furnace and replacing your windows.
“A good quality company is going to come in, spend 30 to 60 minutes with you, talk to you about all of the options — the designs, styles, colors — talk to you about your needs, make suggestions, professionally measure your window openings and give you a price right there on the spot, without any ridiculous 30-50% price drops,” John said. “They’re also going to ask you for the sale, but they aren’t going to hold a gun to your head.”