The Talk

  • January 18, 2012
    THE TALK...

    Do You Follow Your Gut or Data?

    In working on the 2012 forecast piece for the January/February issue, I had the opportunity to talk to a lot of folks in the window and door industry about what they expect for the coming year. We covered a lot of topics, as I’m sure you can imagine, ranging from the significant challenges our industry continues to face, to the overlooked opportunities that some companies are pursuing in ... more »
  • January 9, 2012
    THE TALK... | Markets & Trends

    Will Smart Home Technology Encompass Windows and Doors?

    The concept of the smart home has been with us for many years. Progress in the market, however, has been limited. Last week's announcement from Lowe's about the launch of the Iris system indicates things are changing. And the residential window and door industry is paying attention.Therma-Tru Doors, for example, is going to offer doors that allow homeowners to monitor activity with the Lowe's ... more »
  • December 14, 2011
    THE TALK...

    What is the Biggest Story of 2011?

    This time of year, we start looking back to summarize some of the most notable happenings of the past 12 months. In the mainstream media, some of the top stories being bantered about include politicians’ extramarital activities, royal weddings, and the continued economic woes.In the window and door industry, we’ve had an interesting year as well. We started out with a significant ... more »
  • December 6, 2011
    THE TALK... | Markets & Trends

    A Boost in Confidence?

    Single-family home sales were up 1.3 percent for the month of October. Builder confidence, as measured by NAHB, has increased slightly each of the past two months. Challenges persist in the housing market, says David Crowe, NAHB's chief economist, but he also predicts "modest, gradual" improvements heading into 2012.Are positive numbers trickling into your business yet?  ... more »
  • November 30, 2011
    THE TALK...

    Was Your Black Friday Record Breaking?

    Black Friday 2011 was an impressive (or appalling, depending on your perspective) display of retail consumption. I know a lot of folks get all bent out of shape over Black Friday, but I have shared with Window & Door readers that my family and I get into the light-hearted spirit of it. We don’t shove. We don’t trample. We don’t freak out over a missed deal. We think ... more »
  • November 14, 2011
    THE TALK... | Markets & Trends

    Should the Industry Stand Up for Window Walls?

    Arriving in Toronto for Win-Door North America, the industry is getting a chilly reception–at least from the Canadian Broadasting Corp.  This week's headlines from CBC News offer dire predictions of widespread window failures on the many recently-built glass-walled condos here.  The window walls of the many high-rise buildings constructed in Toronto in recent ... more »
  • November 9, 2011
    THE TALK...

    More Cutbacks by Year End?

    I had noticed through the summer and early part of fall that the number of times I learned on Facebook that another friend had been laid off was  dwindling. In fact, it had been so many weeks without that pit-of-the-stomach feeling on behalf of a friend that I was a little shocked when I recently saw two friends in a matter of days announce that they were now desperately seeking work ... more »
  • October 31, 2011
    THE TALK... | Markets & Trends

    Who Would You Vote For?

    The presidential campaign has been going strong for some time on the Republican side. We've had debates, straw polls, withdrawals from the race, and a mix of front runners, including some who weren't officially candidates.  But given the fact that it's the first week of November and we're now a year away from the real election, I thought it was time for WDweekly's first poll of the 2012 ... more »
  • October 26, 2011
    THE TALK...

    Will Your Business Mirror Harvard's Predictions?

    Last week, Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies released the results of its Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity (LIRA) study that indicates the home improvement market will falter in the early part of next year. The researchers expect the fourth quarter of 2011 will end up with home improvement spending at a pace of about $111 billion per year year.  ... more »
  • October 18, 2011
    THE TALK... | Energy Efficiency

    What Do You Think of New Energy Star Criteria?

    We know a little more about what the Environmental Protection Agency is thinking about the next set of Energy Star criteria, tentatively set to take effect in fall 2013. It issued a document last week, indicating U-value and SHGC performance levels it was considering for windows, doors and skylights.What stood out for me is an apparent EPA decision not to go for an R-5 level of performance ... more »