window replacement: return on investment

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feh
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window replacement: return on investment

Post by feh » Wed Apr 24, 2019 7:20 pm

Hopefully this is all the relevant data:
  • 28 year old house
  • 27 windows; double hung, 2 pane, argon
  • 27 storm windows, double hung with screen
  • likely selling the house in 2-3 years
  • house is in southern Wisconsin
So, the existing windows, from an efficiency perspective, are ok but not great. The storm windows are made of wood, and about half of them need to be replaced due to rot. I've been getting estimates for replacing the storms, and one vendor also quoted us prices for replacing entire windows, not just the storms.

Cost to replace each storm: $340
Cost to replace entire window: $470

We won't be around to benefit from the likely heating/cooling savings. So, I'm wondering if we would recoup the added expense of replacing entire windows when we sell the house.

Thanks.

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willthrill81
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by willthrill81 » Wed Apr 24, 2019 7:25 pm

Someone with extensive real estate experience in your area should be able to tell you fairly easily and quickly, but I would say very likely no. Upgrading something from good to great rarely seems to result in recouping even most, much less all, of the added expense at resale.
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jminv
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by jminv » Wed Apr 24, 2019 7:32 pm

feh wrote:
Wed Apr 24, 2019 7:20 pm
Hopefully this is all the relevant data:
  • 28 year old house
  • 27 windows; double hung, 2 pane, argon
  • 27 storm windows, double hung with screen
  • likely selling the house in 2-3 years
  • house is in southern Wisconsin
So, the existing windows, from an efficiency perspective, are ok but not great. The storm windows are made of wood, and about half of them need to be replaced due to rot. I've been getting estimates for replacing the storms, and one vendor also quoted us prices for replacing entire windows, not just the storms.

Cost to replace each storm: $340
Cost to replace entire window: $470

We won't be around to benefit from the likely heating/cooling savings. So, I'm wondering if we would recoup the added expense of replacing entire windows when we sell the house.

Thanks.
No, you probably won't recoup the investment in full with windows. Replacing the rotten storms is probably something you'll recoup though through not having to discount your house to account for the rot. It's very cheap versus what a potential buyer might think it would cost to fix. It's hard to say for sure with the windows, though, since it's difficult to visualize your place and how old windows fit into the rest of the house. If everything else is 28 years old, I might focus the window money (not the rotting storms) elsewhere, such as in the kitchen and master.

Windows aren't the top thing people look for in a house. I've replaced them before because I hate waste, there was a good deal, the house was drafty, and I was going to be there for a few more years. In any case, the prices are decent for the windows.

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nativenewenglander
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by nativenewenglander » Wed Apr 24, 2019 7:53 pm

Windows are 10% of your heat loss in a building. So even if you save 50% by replacing them you're saving 5%. What is your cost to heat and cool your building? Do the math on your payback based on the roughly $24K outlay.

MrMojoRisin
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by MrMojoRisin » Wed Apr 24, 2019 8:46 pm

I can't reply to the question of ROI but I did replace all my original, builders grade windows with high end double hung units.

Unless you are a nut for cleaning windows the double hung vs. single hung windows debate is pointless. I have never used the double hung feature of my windows. I only ever open the lower sash. Double hung are never as air tight as single. Single cost less to buy and are more efficient. I am happy with the windows I bought, but if doing over again would not even consider double hung.

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Sandtrap
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by Sandtrap » Wed Apr 24, 2019 9:15 pm

If you recoup your window investment on resale, it likely will not be as a direct result of the window upgrade but simply property appreciation and any other upgrades you may have done over time to increase its curb value.

In these particular instances, the greatest return on your investment is the pleasure and enjoyment from living in your home with the improvements over the time you are there. (it's prudent to look at it that way).

I have upgraded various properties over the decades and unless the property was purchased very very low, IE: foreclosure, bank auction, tear down, flipper, etc, the cost of a lot of upgrades like this, seen individually (not collectively), are not recovered, per se.
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jharkin
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by jharkin » Thu Apr 25, 2019 2:04 pm

Window replacements almost never have a positive ROI. Its only a popular thing to do because of really good window industry marketing and HGTV.

https://www.myhomeeq.com/article/altern ... eplacement
https://www.traditionalbuilding.com/opi ... ndow-myths


The question you should be asking your contractor is: Why are your windows rotting after just 20odd years? You need to find and fix the cause otherwise the new ones will rot and fail also. I have windows in my house nearly 100 years old in great shape....

123
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by 123 » Thu Apr 25, 2019 2:21 pm

If I was a home purchaser in your area I would likely bring up the need for the replacement windows/storms as a result of the home inspection, when you thought you had the house almost sold. I would ask for a price concession equal to the cost of replacing the windows plus an additional sum for the inconvenience of having to do it (and your neglect of your maintenance responsibilities). Maybe you'll be able to find an alternate buyer, or maybe not this year.
Last edited by 123 on Thu Apr 25, 2019 2:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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lthenderson
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by lthenderson » Thu Apr 25, 2019 2:23 pm

jharkin wrote:
Thu Apr 25, 2019 2:04 pm
The question you should be asking your contractor is: Why are your windows rotting after just 20odd years? You need to find and fix the cause otherwise the new ones will rot and fail also. I have windows in my house nearly 100 years old in great shape....
+1 Also, just because there is rot, doesn't necessarily mean the storms have to be replaced either. Depending on the amount and location of the rot, some can be repaired so that you would never know it was there after repainting.

quantAndHold
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by quantAndHold » Thu Apr 25, 2019 2:39 pm

These are wood windows? Depending on how bad the damage is, I would be inclined to just repair the rotted wood and repaint. I would also question why they’re so bad after so few years. Our wood windows lasted 80 years, and even then, the main problem was that most of the springs had broken. The wood was still mostly fine.

As far as single hung vs double hung, double hung is helpful if you’re trying to cool the house without air conditioning. In the modern, air conditioned world, double hung windows are easier to clean, but that’s about it. We like our double hung windows, and we do drop the top sashes on the hot side of the house on warm days, but I recognize that they are kind of an extravagance.

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beyou
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by beyou » Thu Apr 25, 2019 2:52 pm

Seems impossible to know exact payback even after selling your house. Too many variables. Seems intuitive that if your home is more desirable you would get more offers, hence competition that drives prices up.

That said, what makes a house more desirable? I suspect first time homebuyers would not be so well versed in window costs and energy savings. Pretty kitchen would be more desirable to them. All new home even more-so.

delamer
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by delamer » Thu Apr 25, 2019 2:59 pm

In my area, it is common for sellers to provide annual heating/cooling costs for potential buyers.

So if a buyer sees a noticeably lower (or higher) energy bill relative to the competition, that will have an effect on sales offers.

Not a huge issue but another point for consideration.

mhalley
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by mhalley » Thu Apr 25, 2019 6:31 pm

Listened to a Clark Howard podcast thneother day about this. The general rule is you never recoup home improvements. Generallyyou get .50 to .60 on the dollar.

megabad
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by megabad » Thu Apr 25, 2019 7:01 pm

feh wrote:
Wed Apr 24, 2019 7:20 pm
So, I'm wondering if we would recoup the added expense of replacing entire windows when we sell the house.
I am sure it depends on the specific neighborhood. In my neighborhood, if the existing storm windows looked really bad (affecting curb appeal) or were leaking into the house, you might get 5% of your total expense back if you replaced them. If your home value is $1,000,000 and you live in a prestigious neighborhood, you might recoup a higher percentage. My colleague at work showed me his repair request on his last house that he put an offer in on (in this price range) and he had "replace all windows on it", so it was definitely a point of negotiation for him. In my neighborhood, I think the real estate agent would laugh at you.

fru-gal
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by fru-gal » Fri Apr 26, 2019 3:09 pm

quantAndHold wrote:
Thu Apr 25, 2019 2:39 pm
These are wood windows? Depending on how bad the damage is, I would be inclined to just repair the rotted wood and repaint. I would also question why they’re so bad after so few years. Our wood windows lasted 80 years, and even then, the main problem was that most of the springs had broken. The wood was still mostly fine.
+1 They make epoxies for this.

Nowizard
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by Nowizard » Fri Apr 26, 2019 3:18 pm

An inspection by a purchaser will definitely target wood rot in windows and elsewhere, so whether you repair or replace, it is also an issue that will affect selling your house.

Tim

Tal-
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by Tal- » Fri Apr 26, 2019 3:25 pm

Short answer: don't replace.

Longer answer: The windows should be in the range of quality as the rest of the house. If you just finished a 100K kitchen upgrade and a 50K roof - yes, you may want to replace the windows. If the house is clearly a fixer, you can probably not do anything. Most likely, your house is clean and functional but not top end - in which case I would likely just do repairs as necessary, but not a full replacement.
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TomatoTomahto
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by TomatoTomahto » Fri Apr 26, 2019 3:39 pm

We purchased a home recently. The inspector mentioned which windows were blown and which weren’t. It affected us indirectly, but we didn’t expect a direct offset. As it happens, we are replacing some of them, but not because they are blown. If they had rot, I would have expected an offset.
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FBN2014
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by FBN2014 » Fri Apr 26, 2019 4:49 pm

As a former real estate appraiser I can tell you that you will not recoup your window expense on resale. New bathroom, kitchen, paint, and flooring are most important on resale value.
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Nova1967
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by Nova1967 » Fri Apr 26, 2019 5:00 pm

There probably is not much of a return on Windows in Wisconsin, In South FL Hurricane impact windows are often a motivating factor in a home sale

mav12
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by mav12 » Fri Apr 26, 2019 9:30 pm

FBN2014 wrote:
Fri Apr 26, 2019 4:49 pm
As a former real estate appraiser I can tell you that you will not recoup your window expense on resale. New bathroom, kitchen, paint, and flooring are most important on resale value.
I'm kind of in the same situation, was considering windows replacement to save on electricity. Just created a new post w/ personal situation. viewtopic.php?f=11&t=279772&p=4515957#p4515957

I'm looking for an advise from people who are in real estate too.

Dottie57
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by Dottie57 » Fri Apr 26, 2019 9:40 pm

You Won’t recoup.

My parents did their windows over since they were leaky and difficult to clean. The opted for double glass windows with much easier cleaning. Great lifestyle change. Lower heating and cooling costs. No drafts in the house.

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willthrill81
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by willthrill81 » Fri Apr 26, 2019 10:33 pm

FBN2014 wrote:
Fri Apr 26, 2019 4:49 pm
As a former real estate appraiser I can tell you that you will not recoup your window expense on resale. New bathroom, kitchen, paint, and flooring are most important on resale value.
From my experience, the ROI of paint and soap in a home sale is very high.
“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.” J.R.R. Tolkien,The Lord of the Rings

illumination
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Re: window replacement: return on investment

Post by illumination » Sun Apr 28, 2019 7:51 pm

I'm going through this now. What a nightmare picking it out. And it really seems to be an industry that has a lot of sleazy tactics. Finally think I found a decent installer.

I definitely don't think there's any sort of financial payback worth mentioning, either on the energy savings or the resale. I have one bedroom that still has single pane windows and it's just an uncomfortable existence. Lots of noise, gets direct sun so lots of heat, cold and drafty in the winter, etc. But I'm only expecting like $10 month in utility savings and I'm probably being optimistic. But it's a luxury I'm willing to pay for.

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