The Talk

  • June 25, 2013
    THE TALK... | Markets & Trends

    Are You Seeing Window and Door Shortages?

    NAHB and NLBMDA issued a recent report pointing to shortages of certain construction materials in the current market.  While windows and doors are not cited as prime examples, the groups' surveys indicate that our industry's products are harder to come by than usual, at least by historic standards.Nine percent of builders and lumber dealers report seeing some shortages in the market ... more »
  • June 19, 2013
    THE TALK... | Close-Ups

    Are You a Dealer Worthy of Recognition?

    This is sort of a trick question, actually. Any dealer that has weathered the storm of the last few years is likely a dealer worthy of recognition. We've been through a lot with the housing market rollercoaster, and last year's Dealers of the Year winners were stories not only of survival, but also of companies that learned to thrive in the new normal of window and door sales, distribution and ... more »
  • June 11, 2013
    THE TALK... | Markets & Trends

    What's the Rest of the Year Look Like to You?

    "Finally seeing a nice uptick in business!!!!"  That was the sign-off on an email I received this week from an industry supplier, and it was just the kind of nugget I needed to feel better about the next few months.Despite improving economic data–and construction and remodeling industry data suggesting that window and door sales are on the upswing–I continue to hear ... more »
  • June 5, 2013
    THE TALK...

    Are Traditional Salespeople a Dying Breed?

    I know without a doubt that we are a different industry today than we were just six or seven years ago. When I started with the magazine a decade ago, I remember thinking how impressive the really good salespeople were. There was so much information to learn, so many products to embrace and so many different types of customers to approach. These window and door warriors had challenges to ... more »
  • Do You Have an Installation Checklist?

    May is National Home Remodeling Month, and to mark the occasion, the American Architectural Manufacturers Association is urging homeowners to trust their window and door replacement to professional installers. As we all know, qualified installers not only help homeowners avoid the pitfalls associated with DIY installations, they make the window and door replacement process significantly ... more »
  • May 22, 2013
    THE TALK...

    Is Manufacturing In Vogue?

    Guess what, my window and door manufacturer friends—we are now, apparently, cool. According to a recent article in the Crain’s Cleveland Business publication, manufacturing is now “in” among some pockets of teenagers, and it’s not just boys who are looking at what has increasingly become a high-tech segment of our economy.“Modern manufacturing is high-tech, ... more »
  • The Latest Trends in Energy Efficient Home Products

    A recent survey from the National Association of Home Builders found that one of the top factors home buyers look for in a home is energy efficiency. While that might not be a surprise to those of us in the remodeling industry, it certainly reinforces what our customers have been telling us for the past 20 years.With the subject of climate change and green living top of mind, and as some ... more »
  • Is "Made in the USA" Important to Customers?

    This week, Marvin Windows is highlighting the fact that it offers windows meeting passive building standards that are "made in the USA," offering customers faster turnaround and design flexibility, it states. The Earthwise Group of vinyl window manufacturers was also honored as the "Made in the USA Certified " company of the year.  And, "Made in the USA" was ... more »
  • Are You Cloud Based?

    It seems as though cloud-based computing is picking up steam in the manufacturing sector. "The best manufacturers I’ve visited this year all share a common attribute," writes Louis Columbus, a Forbes contributor in a recent column. "They are obsessed with making themselves as easy as possible to work with from a supply chain, distribution and services ... more »
  • April 30, 2013
    THE TALK... | Management, Operations

    Are Old Problems Coming Back?

    The housing market continues to recover, but not at the rate many of us would like to see. Economists attribute sluggish growth levels to rising material costs and a lack of skilled labor, among other reasons.Builders around the country are pointing to such problems, particularly in some of the hotter new home markets. It's been a long time, however, since I heard such complaints in the window ... more »