Are Drafty Home Windows Costing You Money?

Are Drafty Home Windows Costing You Money?

Investing in new energy-efficient replacement windows may be the best home improvement project you could do to protect the value of your home while maximizing the return on your home-improvement dollar.

You may like the windows you have, especially if they are authentic and complement the age of your home. Upon a closer look, they may be diminishing your home’s potential value.

I don’t have to tell you that the economy has fueled the current boom in home improvement projects. But how do you know which improvements will yield the most return on your investment dollar? Installing replacement windows may be the wisest financial decision you can make right now.

Besides the energy savings to you, new replacement windows will protect your real estate value should you decide to sell. Keeping your old drafty windows may be the equivalent of placing a huge sign in your front yard saying “This house costs a fortune to heat.”

Additionally, stricter government (Department of Energy) regulations regarding energy efficiency can make it difficult to keep your home competitive in the marketplace. The truth of the matter is, your home won’t even be considered if you don’t have energy-efficient windows installed.

If you need to upgrade on the fly in order to sell, you’ll either have to shell out your hard-earned dollars to install energy efficient replacement windows, give the prospective buyer a credit, or reduce your selling price – all less than satisfactory options. If your existing windows are old, drafty, don’t work easily, or aren’t energy efficient, you’ll end up paying for new windows either way, and won’t have enjoyed any of the comfort and benefits of saving energy.

Plus today, more and more Americans are realizing that a snug, well-insulated and energy efficient home just feels better and more sound. They believe it will last longer and will bring a higher selling price. It will.

Quality wood-vinyl composite windows are an investment that can result in a significant payback. Remodeling Magazine’s annual Cost vs. Value Report for 2008 indicates that you can typically recoup 70% or more on your investment when you sell. The remaining 30% can also be offset by the IRS energy tax credit of $1,500 as well as reduced monthly utility bills and by virtually eliminating your maintenance costs.

Besides price considerations, there’s the comfort factor to think about. New home windows will feel less drafty in the winter, cooler in the summer, quieter year-round, and generally more secure.

Obviously in the current housing market, selling might not be the best option, especially when you consider the decline in real estate values and the costs of moving Real estate commissions and bigger mortgages are two additional pitfalls that come to mind.

So staying in your home while enjoying those new windows for a few more years may be the best use of a home equity loan or home improvement loan you could ever make.