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Ridhi Raheja

Ridhi Raheja

Loan Officer
Movement Mortgage
NMLS ID # 303815

We’re shedding some light on window replacement

By: Movement Team
November 1, 2023
Congratulations, you bought a new home! Your mind is probably filled with ideas on how to decorate the kitchen or what color you might want to paint your bedroom. With all the ways to show off your style and make sure everything’s in tip-top shape, inspecting your windows is probably the last thing on your mind. But it’s important to make sure your home is in good shape inside and out.

We’re going to highlight some signs your windows might need replacing, what repairs might look like and how this can even add some value to your home. (You’ll probably hear more about windows than you ever thought you would, but trust us, it’ll be worth it).

Signs your windows need to be replaced

If windows just look like windows to you and you aren’t sure what to look for, no worries! Here are a few signs that it might be time to replace them.

  • Doesn’t open or close properly - You should be able to easily and quickly operate your windows. If they tend to jam, stick or even slam shut on their own, this is probably a sign they need to be replaced.
  • You feel uncomfortable drafts - No one wants to feel a cold draft in the winter or a warm draft in the summer inside your home. If you are experiencing these drafts near your windows, it might be time for new ones. This is also likely contributing to higher utility bills, which are never fun.
  • Loud outside noise - Whether you live near a busy road or just in a lively neighborhood, you don’t need unwanted noise keeping you up at night. If you feel like your windows are allowing more noise in than they should, it’s a good sign they may need replacing.
  • Visible wear and decay - If there is damage around your windows, not fixing it may cost you more money in the long run. Whether this causes more damage to the window itself or lets in unwanted water or elements into your home, you’ll probably want to get them fixed sooner rather than later.

What are my options, and what is the cost?

Once you notice your windows might need replacing, it’s time to look into what your options are and how much this is going to cost you.

First, you’ll want to pick out the window frame material. The most common types are usually vinyl, wood, fiberglass, aluminum and composite.

  • Vinyl windows - These are usually the most popular type of windows, along with being more affordable, durable and energy-efficient compared to other materials. The average price for these usually ranges from $100 to $900 per window that needs replacing.
  • Wood frames - If you like a more historic aesthetic to your home or if you live in a historic district, this might be a good choice for you. These frames typically cost $150 to $1,300 but could cost more in certain situations. This classic style can help you uphold the look of your home if it’s required in your location or just fits your own aesthetic.
  • Fiberglass frames - If you’re looking for frames that have a little more durability but are insulted similarly to vinyl, fiberglass could be what you’re looking for. Their average cost is typically $500 to $1,500 per window.
  • Aluminum frames - These frames are strong, lightweight and can fight against warping; however, they are not the best at insulating compared to other types. Their cost range varies depending on the size and quality of your windows, but you can usually expect somewhere between $75 to $400.
  • Composite windows - This type is usually the most durable option on the market because it combines wood fibers and polymers to ensure the durability as well as energy efficiency of the window. These can cost between $300 and $1,200 for each window.

It’s also important to consider the location of your window that needs to be replaced. Sometimes, the location can affect the price of replacement on top of the material you choose.

  • Basement windows - Typically, the windows in your basement can cost anywhere from $200 to $1,000 to replace. You can also have egress windows in your basement, which serve as an extra exit from this area in case of emergency or as an entry for people in emergency situations. These are usually more expensive, though, and can range from $2,000 to $5,000 instead.
  • Bathroom or bedroom window - Depending on which floor these windows are located, the price for replacement can vary. But typically, they can range from $300 to $1,000 per window.
  • Living area windows - These, like bedroom windows, can range from $300 to $1,000 each. However, if these are large picture windows, the cost can easily increase from this range.
  • Kitchen windows - The size and types of windows you have in your kitchen often dictate how much their repair costs are. But they usually average about $300 to $2,500 to replace.

Overall, keep in mind that replacing windows on floors other than the first floor can cause the prices to increase as it takes more labor, time and equipment to ultimately replace it.

Now, let’s move on to the types of glass you can have and how much they cost! (I bet you didn’t realize how much went into windows).

  • Frosted glass - No, this isn’t some new version of frosted flakes; it’s actually a type of glass you can have for your windows. This glass is partially opaque, so you can still have some sunlight coming through, but it blurs the inside view of your home to those walking by. These can cost from $100 to $650. (A lot more than your favorite cereal).
  • Laminated glass - If you want to make sure your glass is highly durable, this could be a great choice. Because this window uses resin, its durability becomes substantially stronger than normal glass. This option usually costs between $360 and $900.
  • Tempered glass - This type might come in handy if you live somewhere that commonly experiences inclement weather and you need glass that will protect against it. This cost can range between $350 and $600.

There are also many other types of glass that you can use for your windows, like double-pane glass, which can cost anywhere from $250 to $2,000. Just be sure to look at your available options and their benefits to make sure you choose the right one for your home.

In general, when deciding what to replace your old windows with, consider the location or type of window in question. Different rooms can have very different needs and, therefore, require different kinds of windows. For example, having a double or even triple-paned window in areas that have very hot or cold weather may be beneficial and worth the extra cost.

Does this add value back to the home?

We know spending money isn’t always a fun thing to do, but it definitely can be more manageable if there’s a benefit to spending this extra cash. Well, the good news is that replacing your windows can actually add value to your home!

On average, having new windows can add about $13,500 in value to your home, which is nearly a return of 70% of the cost of your project. This can really make taking on the cost of repairs more manageable because you are able to add to the value of your home. But there are other advantages to window replacement, too.

  • Energy efficiency - Outdated windows could be causing your energy bill to increase because it’s letting heat in or out when you don’t want it to. By replacing them, you are more likely to be more energy efficient and save money.
  • Curb appeal - Windows might not come to your mind as something that is important for curb appeal, but they’re actually a very prominent feature of your home. Replacing your outdated windows can help dress up your exterior, especially if you’re thinking of selling soon.
  • Less outside noise - No one likes to be kept up all night by your neighbor's barking dog or the block party down the street. Replacing your windows can help eliminate these noises so you can sleep easily at night. There are even soundproof windows you can utilize, which can serve as a major selling point, especially in a noisy neighborhood.
  • Tighter security - If your windows don’t lock or close properly, you could be inviting criminals inside your home. Making sure your frames are secure and the glass is strong enough to keep criminals out is important to keep you and your family safe at all times.

Ready for new windows?

Now that you know more about windows than you were probably expecting to, consider looking at your own windows around the house to see if they show any signs of needing to be replaced. Plus, if you own your home and are ready to talk about how to use your equity to fund your home projects, reach out to your Movement loan officer today!

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Author: Movement Team

About Movement Mortgage, LLC (“Movement”)

Movement is not just a mortgage company – they’re an Impact Lender and force for positive change. With more than 4,000 teammates across all 50 states, they reinvest the majority of our profits back into the communities they serve. Movement is the 10th ranked top-producing residential mortgage company in the U.S., funding more than $20 billion in residential mortgages annually. The company has contributed nearly $400 million to the Movement Foundation since 2012, funding the Movement Schools network, affordable housing projects and global outreach efforts. For more information on Movement and Impact Lending, visit movement.com/impactreport .

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Ridhi Raheja
Ridhi Raheja
Loan Officer
Wondering how much home you can afford? Let’s talk about your next move!
2121 N Southport Ave, Chicago, IL 60614
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NMLS # 303815

State License #IL-031.0005061, IN-DFI-39535, KS-LO.0037767, WI-303815, TX-SML-303815