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Money-saving tips for home improvement using Home Depot: Window Treatments

By (view all posts by Meghan.S)
at 6:00AM Thursday March 7, 2013
under Money Saving Tips

I recently bought my first home. It was one of the most exciting days and I will never forget the incredible feeling of stepping into my own place and reflecting on how hard I worked to get there. Unfortunately there were a lot of overlooked costs that I needed to retroactively factor into the budget of my lovely new home. For me the biggest out of pocket expense I needed to contend with was the cost of putting in window treatments. Although it's a large expense, my experience taught me it doesn't need to break the bank.

Finding the Right Vendor

  • First off, you need to research various options for installing window treatments in order to find the right price. This will help you establish a baseline: - You can do it yourself. Sounds great, right? It is always more cost effective to measure, order and install yourself. However we learned quickly that, for us, there were too many risks involved. Window measurements need to be accurate down to a 10th of an inch. If we didn't measure it correctly when we placed the order we would need to reorder (double the cost). This option I believe is best for people who know what they are doing…. Not me. If you do plan on installing yourself, take a look at this great guide we received from our local Home Depot contact.
  • Work with a local shades or window treatments retailer. We had three different budget blind retailers based in the area provide a quote. After receiving the first quote for a whopping $12,000 (yes, you read that right) we figured we needed a more cost conscious vendor. However the next two options were also very pricey. This option I believe is best for people that have specific requirements and need multiple solutions (for example, not one type of window covering such as shutters that can be installed throughout the house).
  • Go to Home Depot. This was our third attempt at finding the right fit, and just like for Goldilocks, the third one was just right. We walked in and went straight to the window treatments section of the store. The customer rep was incredibly knowledgeable and sat us down to walk through various options to find the right type of treatment we were after. In the end we found that this was the best option for us – both from a cost and time perspective. I didn't even realize they had these services but was very impressed with the customer service and product information they were able to provide. They took us through the entire process from consultation, to selection, measurement, delivery and installation. Plus it saved us thousands of dollars, in fact 50% from the quotes received.
Tips on Getting The Best Deal
Here are several tips that we got from our local Home Depot rep that helped us get the most value and get the product we were most pleased with:
  • First of all, know your budget. By knowing what you are willing to pay you can easily compare features and costs for installation to get the best price fit.
  • Discuss options for style and functionality. Even once you've decided on the type of treatment you'd like, there are a lot of different pricing tiers. There were three pricing tiers with the plantation shutters we wanted. Instead of upselling us our rep recommended the cheapest of the three options and explained how it met our needs (that felt really good by the way, I feel like this is rare). We decoded to go with vinyl interior shutters versus the real wood, which was a much more affordable option but still allowed us to get the look we were after. He even had samples of the different materials on hand so we can be sure that was the best fit for us.
  • Walk through the needs for the different rooms in your house. We ended up saving a lot on the less prominent rooms (like our laundry room), while splurging on the rooms that really showed off our home or had specific needs. For example we wanted shutters that were split in the middle in the front room so we could have light coming in but still have privacy onto the street at eye level. Our rep took the time to talk though each of these options to get a customized quote.
  • Discuss about DIY options. For those that are handy and plan to do a lot of remodeling, this could be a good project to test your skills. 
In the end we were really happy with the outcome and our rep. If you find yourself looking to make home improvements definitely consider the window treatments – they transformed our rooms. Good luck, and happy window shopping!

Come back tomorrow when we talk about flooring. You'll get the breakdown on hardwood, laminate and carpet.

Every day during our 5 part series, answer the question of the day by commenting on the post to be eligible to win a $100 Home Depot gift card. You must comment on all 5 posts by 11:59pm PST on 03/10/2013 to be eligible (please see contest rules). Plus, take advantage of this rare Home Depot coupon to get $5 off your purchase over $50. Today's question is: In your home, what kind of window treatments do you have and why? Was cost a big factor?