Windows are one of the most important parts of a house. When homeowners are looking to upgrade certain aspects of their property, one of the first things to normally come up is windows. The list of home improvement projects you can potentially undertake is endless, but one of the huge factors to think about is cost. Is taking the plunge to upgrade your existing windows worth it? Do they add value to your home? Let's find out, with the help of the Brackenwood team. 

When to replace your windows

The importance of properly maintaining the windows in your home cannot be overstated. However, they do not last forever, and by investing in brand new windows for your home this could improve your comfort, reduce your energy bills, add value to your home and improve your family's quality of life. But what signs do you need to spot? 
  • Presence of cold drafts
Cold drafts are a clear indicator that your windows need replacing, especially when moisture begins to build up between the panes of glass and you can’t get rid of this.​​ This normally means that the seals are damaged and the argon gas between the glass has escaped, compromising your home’s thermal stability, leading to higher energy bills. The small holes and cracks between the glass panes will then allow cold air to enter your household. There are a number of different reasons why a cold draft may be present, but this is one of the most common. 
  • Damaged window panes
If your windows are beginning to appear physically damaged, it’s time to get them replaced. From rot and warping, to discolouration, these are all signs that the window is failing. Certain materials of windows can be more difficult to maintain - such as wood - as rot sets in, it can be almost impossible to prevent this from spreading and affecting the entire window. Poor quality uPVC windows can also become discoloured over time, which not only ruins its physical appearance, but also causes difficulty in regulating the temperature in your home.
  • Audible, outside noise
High quality windows are designed to reduce sound transfer, resulting in quieter, more relaxing living spaces. So, if you are able to hear normal, everyday noises from the inside of your home - such as traffic, dogs barking, car horns and more - this means your windows are not doing their job properly. Excess noise is a sign your windows are not providing enough insulation. Your home is supposed to be a relaxing space away from the outside world and modern windows are designed to reduce sound transfer which can make a huge difference to your quality of life. If you want to enjoy a more peaceful experience at home, it’s time to replace those windows. 
  • Energy bills becoming higher
Over time, windows can lose their efficiency which leads to your heating bills gradually rising. Even if you think your windows are in good condition and doing their job, if you have noticed your energy bills rising, it may be a sign that your windows are no longer insulating your home effectively.  Old or inefficient windows can have a significant impact on your home's insulation, as the more heat that is able to escape your home, the harder your central heating will be working to compensate. If this is the case, it’s time to invest in some higher quality windows, which are going to save you much more money in the long run. 

What windows are best for you? 

There are many factors to consider when replacing windows, including, of course, the cost. Depending on the size of your project and the material you choose, the costs of your replacement windows can vary greatly. When it comes to choosing the right windows for you, there are lots of different options - it can sometimes be hard to make the right choice for your home. Here are just a few of the most popular styles:

Casement windows

A casement window is the standard and the oldest style of window in the UK. When you think of a classic style of window, casement windows probably popped into your head almost straight away. These windows have a timeless design, attached to their frame by one or more hinges at the side, opening like a door from either the top or bottom. Here at Brackenwood, casement windows are our most popular design and are available in many styles and finishes. Our casement windows are all manufactured in the exact same way and are guaranteed to stand the test of time with their A Rated Energy Efficiency. 

Tilt and turn windows

Creeping up in popularity due to their modern and classic design, tilt and turn windows have excellent weather proofing and security features, often being used in situations where traditional Sash and Casement windows are not an option due to the property’s design. They can either tilt in at the top of the sash or swing open like a door. At Brackenwood, we have an extensive range of tilt and turn windows for you to choose from, in an almost unlimited range of colours due to our unique onsite paint facility. 

Sliding sash windows

Sash windows have always been popular in the UK, especially throughout Hampshire, Berkshire and Surrey. This window style is still widely used on traditional-style new builds. However, sash windows are traditionally made out of timber, which means they can be a very expensive and high maintenance choice for windows. However, at Brackenwood, we have impeccably finished uPVC sash windows that are indistinguishable from genuine timber. With our modern manufacturing methods, you can enjoy the traditional sash window, but without any worries that old sash windows were notorious for, such as difficulty in opening, noise and drafts.

Bay and bow windows

When you want to dramatically increase the natural light in your home, bay or bow windows are the best option for you. Bay windows are usually made up from multiple casement windows, projecting outwards from the face of a building, forming a recess within a room. Whereas, bow windows have a more curved, round appearance which bring in more light and extends your living area more. They are both great to use as a visual centre piece and create a design statement like no other home feature. 

Do new windows add value to your home?

Now, the real question is, taking into consideration the various styles of window you can choose from and the benefits of investing in new windows, do they add more value to your home? The short answer, absolutely. Replacing your windows may be one of the most cost-effective home improvements you can make, especially if you currently have single-glazed windows. 
  • The problem with single-glazed windows
Most potential buyers require that their future house has double-glazed windows, as a minimum. With the huge amount of property competition on the market as there is today, your single-glazed windows house may have no chance, compared to the countless other homes out there with double-glazing. Compared to A-rated double glazing, single glazing can lose up to 20% of your home's heat. Buyers don’t want to have to upgrade their windows themselves, especially when they have the option to buy a house with double glazing already installed.  So, if you were to sell in the future, it may make life a lot harder for yourself. Upgrading from single glazed windows to double glazed windows will greatly improve the energy-efficiency of your home. With a higher demand for your house on the market with better windows, this means that your home is going to sell at a higher value. Even if you never plan to move and are happy in your forever home, upgrading your windows will save you a significant amount of money in energy bills.

How much value do new windows add?

Despite it not being as straight-forward as calculating a definitive value, houses doing favourably against their competitors can see their value rise by as much as 10%.  However, it’s important to remember that there are multiple grades of double glazing, so for example, A-grade double glazing will add greater value than D-grade, so this is a factor which is going to affect the potential value your new investment can add. 

Finding the right window replacement company

Taking into consideration everything above, if you have decided upgrading your windows is the way forward for your property, it’s now time to find the right company for the job. Whenever you’re looking for a window company in Hampshire, Berkshire or Surrey, the Brackenwood team would be more than happy to help you.  We can help with everything from design through to installation and you can rely on us to provide you with a cost-effective solution that is perfect for you and your family. We hold great pride in being one of the longest established family owned and operated businesses in the region - so you know we are the window company you need to contact