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Replacing Windows in Your Home


Nancy Lane Interiors blog: Our journey of buying replacement windows


Today it's all about windows y'all! This is by far the least sexy part of owning a home and maintaining it over the long term, but it is something that will affect your every day enjoyment of your home (and maybe even your wallet when that monthly heating/cooling bill comes in).


We are foregoing any big trips this year to focus on house improvements, and I thought, let's bring everybody along! If you've never thought about replacing the windows, or if you've been researching and looking around for opinions about the process, keep reading and I'll share as much as I can about my experience of buying replacement windows for our home!



Nancy Lane Interiors blog: Our journey of buying replacement windows


Replacement Windows Research Winner: Marvin Windows


After years of research, and a trial run of sorts with two of our windows, we went with Marvin Windows again for the rest of our windows this time around. We already replaced two windows with Marvin ten or so years ago, and have had zero issues so far. If I've learned anything in my research, it's that the installation is as important, if not more so, than the window itself.


We had a horrible experience with installation the first time around. Not a bad installation mind you, but they weren't very clear about the fact that painting would be needed and was not part of their scope of work - plus the installers beat the hell out of the window trim and we had to get a separate trim carpenter to repair.


They also butchered our alarm wires and we had to get all new sensors, so that meant materials and labor from a second company. If they had warned us, maybe I wouldn't have been so irritated, but they portrayed it like a one stop, all-in estimate, and it was not.

This time around we did our due diligence and then some. I knew we did not want all wood windows - been there, done that, no thank you. I love the look for sure but here in humid Houston where its either hot, hot as an oven, or hot as hell, all wood windows are more upkeep than I want to keep up with.



Nancy Lane Interiors blog: Our journey of buying replacement windows


Here's more about types of windows straight from Marvin:


For replacement windows, Marvin has a line called Marvin Integrity. We went with their fiberglass option, which is stronger than vinyl and requires less maintenance than wood windows. As I mentioned previously, we replaced a casement window in our kitchen and an old glass block window in our bathroom more than a decade ago with the same type of Marvin window, and we've done literally no maintenance other than pressure washing our home.


We did consider other brands, but in the end, I kept circling back to Marvin. We found an all in one company from which we could buy the windows and who actually handle the installation themselves as well, rather than pawn you off to an outside installer. For me, that was a non-negotiable, but please know that's also a matter of personal preference and what you're comfortable with. 


I will say another reason Marvin was heads above the others, in my humble opinion, were the design options available, including separate selections for inside and outside paint options. 



Our existing windows are double hung, and I can tell you that zero times have we ever opened the windows from the top down. As a matter of fact, here in Houston, we rarely have the weather that allows us to open our windows at all. Maybe a few weeks in the spring and a couple in the fall, if that, but honestly we rarely leave our windows open. Because of that, we then decided to save the money and opted for single hung. We also only ordered screens for two windows that, when it's nice out, we actually do indeed open. 



Nancy Lane Interiors blog: Our journey of buying replacement windows


It may be easier to order the windows with all of the same details, but taking your time and really thinking about your lifestyle will save you a lot of money in the long run! For most of the house, I opted for the traditional look of divided lites with a standard grille layout using Simulated Divided Light (SDL) bars that have a spacer bar between the panes of glass. It just works for the traditional style of our house and definitely adds to the curb appeal. In our bedroom I opted for no grilles so that I could have an uniterrupted view of my back garden. Another window I went rogue on was a large glass block window in my home office. I love the sunlight that pours in all day but honestly the view of the side of my neighbors house is a must miss so I opted for frosted glass and no grille.


Do your own research and take into account your location, your lifestyle, your design preferences, and your budget. There's so many options and styles to choose from and you should be comfortable and confident in your selections or keep looking until you are! I hope reading about my own replacement window buying process for our home was helpful.

Stay tuned to see the installed photos in the coming weeks - we're excited to see this project finished!



Nancy Lane Interiors blog: Our journey of buying replacement windows


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