I get questions almost every day about the house. I am happy to talk about the house because I also can’t wait to see progress but the usual update is “not much.”
The reason it’s “not much” is because we are playing a waiting game on our windows. While we wait things are happening at the house - really exciting things like drainage. But not enough that you’d walk by and say “wow, look at that!”
Our windows were by-in-large the biggest investment of the house. A significant amount of the house is covered in windows and glass doors so we knew that they had to be good. Like really food, amazing good, outstanding good. And we wanted them to last for ever.
Our architect specified windows and doors based on pieces they’ve used before and what they like for the “reveal” around the edges. I cannot even remember how many window estimates we went after. Almost a dozen.
The price tag on installing walls and walls of windows is no small number either. So when we were looking at all of the estimates, there was a lot of sticker shock. And sticker shock makes you take a minute to consider which one you are choosing. We took more than a minute. We took weeks.
I’m sure if we would have pulled the trigger immediately we would have windows going in right now but we don’t.
I’m sure you’re wondering what we chose. And maybe why? Here’s what was important to us
Going with one company for windows and doors so everything matches. You would not believe how different “glass colors” can be if they are made by different companies. Most people would probably not notice, but I’m picky like that.
Going with one company also meant one delivery date, one delivery coordination, and one installation team.
I wanted really clean lines inside. And white walls. Which meant the window frames should really be white or very very light to make the lines clean. But the architect specified black on the outside. There is only one company that will create a window & door system like we need that’s black on the outside and white on the inside.
In the event you are going through the process of choosing windows - or really something large - here’s the process we went through:
We requested bids from six different window companies who could all provide the window sizes we have in the plans.
We immediately eliminated one company who was a pain in the ass to deal with and I felt like the sales person was really condescending to me. Not ok. Not dealing with that.
We also immediately eliminated a company that was really expensive
We also immediately eliminated a company that had wood interior and metal clad exterior. While I know that’s a selling point for ‘traditional’ homes, it wasn’t the look we wanted in our house.
We discovered that two of the companies offered the same product from the same distributor at different prices. One is the guy in point #2.
Once we were narrowed down to two companies we made a list of pros & cons to determine what was important to us. Each company had offerings, so we needed to figure out what we were willing to compromise on. I’m not good at compromise.
The windows will be delivered in January. We are on hold until they come in since the house isn’t weather tight until they get installed. Seattle in the winter isn’t exactly a dry scenario and we don’t want our insulation or anything else to get wet. Once the windows get installed, the progress will seem super fast (fingers crossed).
The company we ended up choosing is called Minimal Glass. They are a newer company with an excellent reputation - plus a sales guy who could literally sell anything. Minimal can create the doors and windows at the same shop with the same glass and the same sill. We know that everything will match. Minimal was also the only company who could provide a different color inside than outside. So I get white on the inside to match the walls (literally it’s Pure White by Sherwin Williams) and black on the outside to match the rest of the metal work on the exterior.