Latest Articles in THE TALK...

  • I visited with Four Seasons Sunrooms last week. The company reported recent success in picking up new dealers because of its “more complete” product line. Their new dealers like that they can buy from one source, and get more support as a result, yet satisfy more customers with different needs and different budgets. I can see why that would be appealing to many dealers. But I also... more »
  • John Swanson, editor/ associate publisher of Window & Door I visited with Four Seasons Sunrooms last week. The company reported recent success in picking up new dealers because of its “more complete” product line. Their new dealers like that they can buy from one source, and get more support as a result, yet satisfy more customers with... more »
  • John Swanson, editor/ associate publisher of Window & Door Talking to equipment suppliers for an upcoming article, they report, not surprisingly, that few window and door makers are expanding capacity these days. Yes, many are replacing old machines or upgrading existing lines, and a good number of manufacturers are re-tooling, but suppliers also note... more »
  • Christina Lewellen, senior editor of Window & Door I have a feeling that with our lovely housing market in its current state, price negotiations between you and your customers or you and your suppliers have become even trickier than they were in the past. So my question this week is whether you’re finding that you can hold your own in pricing talks... more »
  • Christina Lewellen, senior editor of Window & Door Ok, so if you’re not a huge fan of Ben Stein, just ignore the picture and focus instead on the message. In this blog, he shares a personal experience about some disappointing customer service and makes a valid point about willingness to work. Sure, we’re in an economic downturn, but... more »
  • John Swanson, editor/ associate publisher of Window & Door Speaking at the Home Improvement Research Institute’s spring conference last week, Kermit Baker, director of the remodeling futures program at the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University, suggested that remodelers can do better in these difficult economic times by... more »
  • Christina Lewellen, senior editor of Window & Door Do you buy products for their warranties? I have to admit that, with the exception of my cars, I really don’t (my dad would be so disappointed if he knew!). In fact, I tend to be leery of warranties because I figure there’s probably enough legalese in them to eliminate some or most of my... more »
  • John Swanson, editor/ associate publisher of Window & Door Over the past few decades, we've seen a number of window and door ideas migrate from Europe to North America. If not vinyl itself, the concept of welded vinyl came from there. Multipoint locking hardware, argon gas filling and a couple other ideas were also adopted in Europe first. So when I... more »
  • Christina Lewellen, senior editor of Window & Door Our upcoming green-focused April issue highlights a few window and door dealers that have found success in marketing their companies as green. Just this morning, I read another story about a lumberyard/window dealer taking a green position with its customers. As this sort of marketing approach gains... more »
  • John Swanson, editor/ associate publisher of Window & Door Spring officially begins tomorrow and with it comes the spring selling season. Just about everyone agrees the new construction market is unlikely to make much of a comeback this year, but what about replacement and remodeling activity? I thought it would be a good time to see what everyone... more »