Sure, the economy is in poor shape at this point in time. However, there are bright spots, too, and if the media were to simply give us a balanced economic picture—instead of focusing ONLY on the bad news—I’m convinced the American public would feel better about everything and start to buy again. It’s all about confidence, consumer confidence!
In the home improvement market, we are most definitely seeing “improvement” (excuse the unintended pun). Homeowners recognize the value in improving their homes, especially when it comes to replacing old, inefficient windows with ENERGY STAR qualified vinyl windows that are proven to lower home energy bills and make their homes more comfortable.
There are a few important factors pertaining to the home improvement and remodeling market that some people forget. Everyone knows that both new home construction and purchases of existing homes are down, partly because of the mortgage and banking situation. However, as a result, because homeowners are deciding to stay in their homes, they’re remodeling and improving them.
Gorell manufactures premium-level replacement windows and doors. How has the economy affected us? Well, we have had to adjust our marketing strategy a bit, but we are doing just fine. For example, we have always manufactured storm windows and doors in addition to vinyl replacement products. In the current economy we are seeing a lot more interest in storm products as a lower-cost alternative to replacement windows. These products still provide benefits homeowners want, like increased energy efficiency and sound reduction. And homeowners, who may have problems getting financing, are more likely able to pay for storm windows and doors without taking out loans.
This development has led to another change in what we are doing at Gorell Windows & Doors. Although we pride ourselves in manufacturing some of the absolute finest windows and doors in the country, we also recognize the situation homeowners find themselves in now because of increased difficulties in obtaining financing. So we’ve created a new lower-cost window, a single-hung product without the bells and whistles of our premium windows that more homeowners can afford.
We are just rolling this new product line out now, so the verdict isn’t in yet, but our dealers are already telling us that this move is an excellent one—and that they are certain it will sell. We’re just doing our part for the economy!