For many years the window installation industry suffered a bad press. As double-glazing became the ‘norm’ for housing, the pressure for all existing houses to be fitted with this new glazing standard intensified. This led to the creation of the ‘pushy double-glazing salesman’, who would come to your home and then would virtually refuse to leave until you’d signed away thousands of pounds to buy their products.
Thankfully, pushy double-glazing salesmen have gone the way of regular power cuts, only having three TV channels and a decent English national football team, however, when it comes to choosing the best window installer, you still need to be careful. Here are some tips to help you get the best deal on your new glazing.
How to kick off the decision-making process
Window supply and installation is a competitive business. If you listen to your local radio station then you’re probably sick to death of all the advertisers offering this deal and that deal, half-price installation, buy-one-get-one-free, etcetera, etcetera …
The first thing to look for when deciding who to use to supply your windows is a company that has a confirmed affiliation with a recognised UK-wide trade association. Two to look out for are FENSA (Fenestration Self-Assessment) and CERTASS (Certification and Self-Assessment). Check that companies that display the logos of these organisations on their sites are actually certified by them – some companies use the ‘badges’ when they’ve no right to do so.
You may be tempted to go with one of the larger glazing companies in the UK – well known names such as Everest, Anglian and Safestyle. You may feel ‘protected’ in going for one of the ‘big boys’ and that’s fine, but be aware that you will end up paying more for your windows. Larger companies charge bigger prices simply because they can.
A local window installer for local people
Local companies are keen to syphon business away from the industry leaders, so they will usually offer you a better deal. You do though need to take extra care, as some local companies will cause you nothing but grief. If you find a local company that you like the look of, then use the internet to check out user testimonials that have been written about them.
If you really don’t know where to start, then ask your friends and family about their experiences. Quite often someone will know someone who has recently used the services of a local window installer. When it comes to learning how effective a local company is, personal recommendations usually cannot be beaten.
Don’t be pressured!
Unfortunately, some companies still try the ‘pushy’ salesmen tactic – pressuring you into making a deal as soon as they meet you, and asking you to add on all kinds of ‘essential’ extras. If you experience this, then you know you’re dealing with the wrong company.