Latest Articles

  • Sure, there were concerns about a tax credit hangover in the replacement and remodeling market as the year began, but most industry folks I talked to were talking positively about 2011. It might not be a gangbuster year, but I got the sense that most window and door manufacturers and dealers in this segment were looking for growth. Unfortunately, we've been getting mixed signals of late. On the... more »
  • There is an adage that goes something like this: What you don't know won't hurt you. Well, I'm not sure how true that is. It leaves an awful lot to chance. And as businessmen and women, we independent window and door dealers can't afford to leave too much to chance— especially in this economy. One perfect example of the dangers of leaving something to chance is the Department of Energy... more »
  • Commercial products are being added
    The U.S. Department of Energy High Performance Windows Volume Purchase Program begins Phase II in May. After a year’s experience, the program is being expanded to include commercial windows. Also noteworthy will be changes to the program Web site to provide more pricing information to potential buyers. The purpose of the program, initially known as the R-5 Window Program, has been to bring... more »
  • It may not be for the best of reasons, but the storm clouds over the housing market may have a silver lining in the form of a brighter outlook for home remodeling and window replacement. Researchers surmise that, in the context of the depressed number of new housing starts, a significant increase in remodeling activity is reflecting a shift toward reinvesting in existing homes over building new... more »
  • Some interesting news this week from HUD and DOE. In the Obama Administration's continuing efforts to encourage energy efficient upgrades to the nation’s residential housing stock, the PowerSaver lending program is now open for business. In a nutshell, homeowners with decent credit and some equity in their homes are eligible to seek low-interest loans for up to $25,000 to complete... more »
  • The Pennsylvania legislature may be pushing back against the rising energy efficiency tide. According to a recent article, a bill is moving forward there that will make it extremely difficult to tighten the state energy code, because, environmentalists say, builders will have virtual veto power. Through the years, there has always been resistance to higher energy efficiency standards.... more »
  • We focus on style in this issue, and personally, I think it’s something many people in our industry need to do more often. Don’t get me wrong. There are plenty of great looking products out there, but sometimes I think many of us let ourselves get too caught up in the numbers. The numbers are important. Whether it’s a certain U-factor or DP rating, if it’s required, it... more »
  • I came across an interesting story this week coming out of New Jersey. State and consumer affairs organizations there decided enough was enough when it came to local home improvement contractors operating outside the realm of state laws and operating requirements. Officials organized a “sting house” to solicit bids for various types of repair and improvement projects, calling to the... more »
  • In the January/February issue, this column summarized what were considered at the time to be the finalized requirements for the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code, based on the 2010 ICC Group B- final action hearings which dealt with the IECC and the International Residential Code, among others. It turns out the decisions made during those hearings weren’t so final. Three appeals... more »
  • Facing a weakening market, the Miami-based manufacturer implemented changes to expand
    Rising from the devastation of Hurricane Andrew in 1992, CGI Windows & Doors Inc. got its start by focusing on products that could meet the stringent impact-resistant building codes that emerged in the storm’s aftermath. Faced with a devastating economic environment 15 years later, the company has stayed true to its core, but reinvented itself in many ways too.     CGI... more »