Woodland Windows and Doors Blog

This is where we will post relevant articles, information, and how-to's related to all things windows and doors. Check back often for updates and new information!

Condominium Doors - First Impressions Matter

First impressions and Curb appeal

Whether you’re a homeowner or the property manager for a homeowner’s association (HOA) you know that your building’s curb appeal directly impacts property values, so old beat-up entry doors don’t bode well for what’s inside. Let’s face it, first impressions matter and an entry door is one of the first things guests will see. In HOAs, exterior doors are usually “limited common elements”, which when replaced benefit everyone.

Manor chatham in buffalo grove ilE copy 2

                 Manor Homes of Chatham

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Best Value Remodeling – Remodeling Magazine’s 2015 Winners

Each year Remodeling Magazine releases it’s Cost vs. Value Report. The report compares year by year changes in job costs with Realtor’s perceptions of what those jobs bring to a home’s price at resale. The 2015 Report measured 36 projects nationally and by region. Three projects that exceeded 2014 values stood out in this year’s report, they are, steel entry doors, roofing, and vinyl siding replacement. The cost-value ratio expresses resale value as a percentage of construction cost. In the north central area, steel entry door replacement returned 86.3% of the replacement cost at the time the
It’s not surprising to see these three replacement jobs on the list of most return for your investment given the rising perception nationwide of the value of curb appeal. If you’re considering undertaking any of these remodeling projects in 2016, now is the time to start your research and here are a few things to consider as you make your decisions.

Upgrade the front door
Steel Door with Sidelites
Your entry door is a key element of design so use this opportunity to capture the look you’ve dreamed of. Modernize your home with a contemporary door, add architectural detail with a craftsman style, or replicate a historical period with a traditional door. In the report, steel entry doors return the greatest value on your investment and an insulated steel door will likely save on energy costs. Wood and fiberglass doors generally cost more than a steel door and so, rank below the lower cost steel in the Report, but we’d recommend comparing the performance of different materials when you do your research. Lastly, once you’ve decided on the type of entry door you want, make sure you get the perfect fit. The most reliable method is to remove any interior or exterior trim to expose the true opening and then measure the width, height, door thickness, hinge locations, hinge width and height and handle center. Better yet, let us help before you order your door.
Replace your old roof
Red Metal Porch Roof - Pinterest
Aesthetics, materials cost, weight and installation requirements are key considerations when researching replacement roofing. A square is the basic unit of measurement in roofing, you may win a Trivia game with this little known fact. One square is 100 square feet, making a square the equivalent of 10 feet x 10 feet. A typical two story house, 2,000 sq. ft. with gable roof will consist of less than 1,500 sq. ft. or 15 squares. The cost for your replacement roof will primarily depend on the condition of the existing roof and shape of the roof. Asphalt is the least expensive and slate (most durable) is the most expensive material, with wood, tile and cement, and metal somewhere in between. Asphalt is the most popular because it’s economical and easier to install. When choosing roofing material, the slope of your roof and the weight of the shingles are key factors to consider. Add flair to the look by adding a red metal roof over a porch like you see in the photo. When you’re ready, let us help you select the appropriate material and design for your roof style.
Add flair with new siding
Alside Prodigy Siding
Vinyl siding has been the siding of choice now for many years since technological advances made it both functional and stylish. Replace ugly or damaged siding and you’ll change the entire look of your home’s exterior. When replacing siding, consider adding a few architectural elements such as crown moldings, beaded soffits or decorative trim. Numerous vinyl siding styles and colors, including custom colors are available. When you’re ready for a change, visit our showroom to see and touch these beautiful products and learn about installation.

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Window detail creates that model home feel.

Earlier this year our blog titled “Want that model home feel? Aim high”, suggested that the very act of creating taller windows and doors in your home increases the wow factor found in model homes. The desire to create that model home feel in your own home is a sentiment many homeowners express. Another design secret is the importance of detail.
Once a home’s style is determined, what makes that style come alive is attention to detail. It’s important that you take the time to select the windows, doors and other objects in your home beginning with three design principles.
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Bring the Outdoors In on a Budget

Today’s major trend in home building and remodeling are home designs that connect the outdoors with the indoor. These new wide-span doors from Marvin, Andersen, and others, create expansive openings, while engineered to slide easily and make a perfect seamless connection between the indoors and outdoors. A traditional slider can be up to 10 foot wide, while these doors can be up to 16 feet wide. The design significantly opens the view and allows for natural ventilation into your home.
Marvin Integrity Sliding Doors
These beautifully designed and engineered doors can take a big bite out of your budget. Before you rule out creating oversized openings between your home and the outside, consider other alternatives that will give you essentially the same result for a smaller investment.
Creating oversized door openings and expansive window walls can be achieved on a budget by using standard sized windows and doors put together in a modular way to achieve the look you want. Depending on the overall size you need, your options for creating the look you want are limitless.
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Traditional Homes Mix With Modern Building Materials

Some of the most beautiful neighborhoods around Chicago and its suburbs are the old tree lined streets of traditional homes. Famous for it’s historic architecture Chicago reflects the best of classic homes through the years. Prairie, craftsman, Victorian, farmhouse, brick row houses, limestone mansions – we’ve got it all. If you love the traditional styles that have defined our beautiful area, but want modern functionality – learn how you can mix traditional styles with modern products.
The benefits of remodeling or building a new home using modern windows, skylights, doors, siding, sunrooms and other building products are quite simple; ease of use, better performance, lower utility costs and less maintenance.
Ease of use and better performance
Today’s products are produced using new technologies that make life easier. For example, built in and auto controlled window treatments can be preset to open and close at optimal times. They are simple to use, while maximizing daylight and minimizing unwanted heat gain or loss. There are multi-point door locking systems that engage automatically when the door is closed.
Lower utility costs
Without argument, low E dual and triple pane insulated glass lowers costs over the length of owning your home. Other improvements like insulated oversized glass, gives you more natural daylight to keep your home warm and reduces your need for electric lighting. Modern skylights with special coatings and ventilation are now built in new forms that can direct light and control ventilation in a room.
Source: Velux


Less maintenance
Whether you purchase natural wood windows or synthetic vinyl windows, more than ever before, today’s finishes have a higher resiliency to weathering, mold or mildew. Modern windows tilt inward for easy cleaning and offer water spot resistant surfaces for skylights and hard to reach picture or awning windows.
Traditional exterior and transitional interior
One way to combine the desire for a traditional home with an equal desire to use modern materials is by blending classic style with a few contemporary elements. Keep the traditional exterior façade, while using more contemporary materials for the interior. For example you can choose that classic red brick Georgian exterior and add more windows and glass patio doors, rather than the traditional small and sparse windows. Select traditional brick moldings made of low maintenance composites or vinyl around the windows, rather than the higher maintenance wood choice.
Source: Marvin


The interior can be less traditional with an open floor plan that invites in more natural light. Create entire window walls without completely violating the traditional style of your home by using multiple French doors with glass transoms for a floor to ceiling light wall. Modern folding doors are an alternative if selected in dark hardwoods for a more traditional look. And replacing stationary transoms with remote controlled awnings will help ventilate your home creating cross breezes that will cut down on energy consumption.

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8ft Doors Give that Model Home Feel

Why do we feel happy when we walk into a model home? The best ones are the new high-end developments where the builders incorporate the latest features and materials. What you’re likely feeling is the sense of light, openness and a connection with the outdoors. How do they create that space? Today, home builders are using windows and doors in new ways that maximize the homeowner experience, leaving you wanting to move in. What if you could create this same feeling in your own home?
When you get back home, take a close look at your home’s windows and doors? Do they look undersized, do your walls look barren without windows, is your sliding patio door original, so that a Hollywood film producer could select your house for a remake of a 1950’s family TV series?

The feeling you had in the model home was likely because the windows and doors were chosen to obtain unobstructed views and lots of light. Manufacturers are making multi-panel glass and taller doors that flood rooms with light.

If you want to achieve this look and feel in your home, begin by researching the two standard styles of patio doors, the patio slider or the French swing door(s). Within these two general categories you’ll find a plethora of options such as, French style sliding patio doors with two, three or four-panel configurations, folding doors and pocket sliders. Generally speaking, most people select a slider in the bedrooms, kitchen or family rooms and French doors are preferred for the more formal areas such as the dining or living rooms. From the start, check your answers to a few key questions.
√  What is the largest size that my current opening or wall can accommodate?
√  What direction does the foot traffic flow through the room to the outside?
√  Is there space to open French doors into the room? Could one door open and the second door remain stationary?
At this point you can check out the window showroom, because you have enough information to explore the best possibilities for your home. A few additional pieces of information will be needed before you proceed too far down the path. You’ll want to make sure your header is built according to code and has the proper load requirements for the wall. You’ll also need to measure the rough window openings from stud to stud. All of these are important perimeters that will allow you to choose from standard sizes rather than spending unnecessarily on custom sizes. Remember, when getting a window, write down the dimensions and always put the width first and the height second – always.
Once you’re in the showroom, remember to aim high and settle on the tallest doors your room can accommodate functionally and aesthetically – 8ft, 9ft, or 10ft.? This one feature will do more to give you the open and expansive feeling of a newly built home. Marvin, and Andersen offer these 8ft heights as standard sizes while Pella can accommodate 8ft heights. 
Marvin’s Remodeling & Replacement solutions guide is a great place to orient you to the options. Remember, if you want that model home feel – you’ve got to aim high.

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