Latest Articles in Strategies & Practices

  • The opportunity to honor many of our industry’s innovators with the Crystal Achievement Awards makes our September issue one of the most gratifying to work on each year. It’s not just about recognizing the winners, however. Looking through all the nominations always reveals something about the direction we’re heading as an industry. This year it was evident that window and... more »
  • The home improvement industry has come under close scrutiny for what some regulatory bodies are calling deceptive and misleading sales and employment practices. Unfortunately, many companies have already faced massive fines, penalties and legal fees. This column is designed to build awareness of some of the possible legal problems that dealers can encounter, as well as offer some cautions and... more »
  • Companies need to follow lead-safe work practices on the job site and in the office
    Your personnel have taken the RRP training, and your company has become an EPA Lead-Safe Certified Renovator. You give out the Renovate Right pamphlet to clients, occupants, and/or parents before every replacement or remodeling job on an old building. You train your employees, put up containment, use lead-safe work practices, and clean the job site within an inch of its life. You do... more »
  • The Environmental Protection Agency’s decision not to expand its lead paint rules in July was welcome news for the industry. The added costs of compliance to the existing Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting rules were already having a negative impact on remodeling activity, and additional clearance testing requirements would have inflated those costs further. The costs and their impact on... more »
  • Window and door dealers are probably throwing parties as a result of EPA’s decision last week not to add lead clearance testing to LRRP rules. I don’t blame them—it’s been well documented that adding post-project clearance testing for lead dust would have added significant cost and burden to remodeling projects in pre-1978 homes. No doubt, the decision announced this week... more »
  • You probably noticed that today's WDweekly looks a little different. And if you look closely at the top, you'll see there's a link to view a new mobile version of WDweekly. We know many of you were already looking at WDweekly on your smartphones and we suspect many more will going forward, so we're pleased to introduce this new option today. And we will continue to involve. But we'd like your... more »
  • Kolbe & Kolbe keeps focus on continuous improvement and product development
    Producing high quality windows with employees dedicated to excellence. That was the vision of Herb Kolbe, one of the founding brothers of Kolbe & Kolbe Millwork Co. Inc., and it enabled the company to establish itself as one of the leaders in the high-end window and door market.     Kolbe sees its employees as craftspeople building one window or door at a time.  ... more »
  • If your company is in the business of buying and reselling building products, including doors and windows or components, manufactured by an offshore entity, what happens if a lawsuit is brought relating to those products? As a “seller,” your company is a serious target. “But, we did not make it, we just resold it” is not an adequate defense. Companies need to understand... more »
  • About six weeks ago, I asked whether window and door retailers were getting in the habit of “channel blurring,” a concept whereby former product specialists or niche-targeted retailers start branching out to carry seemingly unrelated products for the convenience of their customers. Like the Home Depot carrying laundry detergent or a window specialist carrying fencing or something... more »
  • Potential opportunity, but the industry and individual companies need to be aware of movement
    Should window dealers become home performance companies? While the home performance industry is still in its infancy, indications in the marketplace and in regulatory arena point to sharp growth in this field in the near future, according to many window and door industry professionals. “The green movement is the next frontier. If you’re not a business owner willing to change, you... more »