The Talk

  • July 26, 2011
    THE TALK...

    Are You Looking at Multi-Family?

    Not too long ago, I talked to a window and door manufacturer that said his company was doing fairly well this year. He attributed his company's success primarily to growth in multifamily jobs. That jibes with a lot of what's been written about the housing market of late.Much of the improvement there has been in housing starts this year has come on the multifamily side. On the retrofit ... more »
  • July 20, 2011
    THE TALK... | Management

    What Will We Fight for Next?

    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 ... more »
  • July 12, 2011
    THE TALK... | Operations

    How Would You Like to Read WDweekly?

    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 »
  • June 28, 2011
    THE TALK...

    Up or Down for 2011?

    Most window and door folks I've talked to recently sound more than a bit disappointed about 2011 to date. Sales are off at many companies and flat at others. It's not what people expected.   According to our Industry Pulse study featured in the January/February issue this year, 55 percent of our readers predicted sales would increase slightly in 2010 over 2011.  About ... more »
  • Are Building Product Generalists Dying?

    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 »
  • Are You Offering 'More Contemporary, Fresh Styles'?

    "At the heart of the growing trend toward 'modern traditional' residential design is the desire to blend the ordinary with the extraordinary," says a recent press release from CMI, announcing th company's new hollow core CraftMaster Conmore molded flat panel interior door. "Today, homeowners are seeking the familiar comforts of traditional design in more contemporary, fresh ... more »
  • LinkedIn: I Hope Your Membership Shrinks!

    There is a reason why business networking site, Linkedin, was able to go public and grow in a down economy. Its growth is a result of the majority of its members being out-of-work, mid- to senior-level executives searching for any opportunity to network in their fields of expertise to obtain a job. If they are not out of work, they are running scared that the bleak outlook for the economy will ... more »
  • How Important is Facebook?

    I tip my hat to MI Windows this week for its impressive product launch strategy. As we highlight in this week's news, MI is supporting its new product using today’s latest technology—including iPad apps and a strong Facebook presence—to help its customers sell more windows in an efficient way.This impressive marketing approach is just one of many ways companies are using ... more »
  • Is It Time for Solar?

    This week, I received an announcement from American Vision Solar about a new program for homeowners.  It caught my eye because the Southern California company is also a window dealer. Another reason it caught my eye is that it followed on the heels of a news report last week about Lowe's Home Improvement entering the solar business.Obviously solar has been capturing more attention in the ... more »
  • Will the Tornadoes Affect Codes?

    We have seen some unbelievable images coming across the news wires following the devastating tornadoes in Missouri this week.  Those storms follow on the heels of an equally destructive tornadoes in Alabama, as well as other storms across the country. Some window and door companies were directly impacted, including Lincoln Windows in Wisconsin, and our hearts certainly go out to all of ... more »