When designing and building a new home, the decisions are innumerable. For custom homes, the design process alone can take up to a year or longer and homeowners, architects, designers and contractors pour their hearts and souls into a project, all while trying to stay on schedule and in budget.
One of the most important decisions in the homebuilding process is the windows. Windows make a huge impact on the final product, playing a large and lasting role in the home’s overall look, lighting, energy efficiency and resale value. You may be surprised to hear that a home’s windows and doors contribute to 15% or more of the overall building budget.
Through our many years in business, we’ve seen what works best for all parties involved in the homebuilding process. Let’s take a look at four of the most popular window styles for new home construction.
Double Hung Windows
Double hung windows bring classic charm to every home. However, it’s important to note that double hung is different from double-paned. “Hung” refers to the number of sashes, and “panes” refers to the actual number of glass panes.
Double hung windows can have up to three panes of glass, but they always have two sashes, an upper and lower one which are both operable. Single hung windows also have two sashes but only the bottom one is operable, and from the outside, they both look nearly indistinguishable.
In a double hung window, both sashes open and close, allowing extra ventilation. It also makes cleaning a breeze. Double hung windows offer flexibility, value and a classic look perfect for almost every home.
Bay windows protrude outward from the home’s main walls, creating a visually appealing effect both inside and outside the home. They are constructed using three or more windows to provide sweeping views and tons of natural light.
Bay windows are an ideal way to add the appearance of extra interior space even if the house is limited on square footage. They can be transformed into cozy seating areas to read a book, drink a cup of coffee or gaze outside.
While bay windows are usually more linear with sharper angles, bow windows have a smooth arch (picture a half-circle) with a slightly smaller outward projection than bays.
Specialty & Custom Shapes
Who says windows have to be square? Specialty and custom-shaped windows are a terrific choice to add interest and dimension to a home. These custom options are often specially designed for the project.
From rounded windows to geometric shapes and more, there’s no shortage of exciting specialty shapes.
Some geometric styles include:
- Full circle
- Circle top
- Quarter round
- Architectural single
If you can dream it up, it’s a window shape possibility. Specialty and custom styles are some of the best options to add unique touches to a home or to bring a motif together.
When you choose a high-quality manufacturer, such as Paradigm, you can take advantage of their factory mulling capability to specialty shape windows. Paradigm can mull any shape that geometrically would fit above or below a standard window; for instance, you could customize a 3 unit wide double hung window with either one eyebrow or a half eyebrow above it for a look that’s all your own.
Sliding windows are a great way to take in the world and let natural light flow into a home. They can dramatically change the appearance of a house thanks to a lack of mullions and a focus on providing crystal clear views.
Sliding windows are becoming an increasingly popular choice for homeowners who want the beauty of constant natural light and continuous visibility to the outside of the home. They can even come in a ‘lite’ format, if you don’t want a full slider window.
And, of course, sliding doors are a popular choice for nature lovers and people who love to entertain at home.
It’s no wonder they’re one of the best styles for new homes.
Picking the Perfect Windows for Your Project
These four options are some of the best window styles we’ve seen for new home construction. But there are other decisions you’ll still need to make. For instance, which material is best?
When it comes to material, you have a few options, including wood, aluminum, fiberglass, and vinyl. All have their advantages and disadvantages, but head-to-head, vinyl comes out on top as a cost-effective, low-maintenance, durable and visually appealing option.
You’ll also have to decide on color, casing and finishings — which all come down to personal preference and the home’s design. Finally, it’s essential to look for high-quality windows that are built with quality and energy efficiency in mind. In other words, the manufacturer matters a great deal.
At Paradigm, we manufacture our windows with quality and convenience in mind. We custom make all our products to fit our customers’ unique needs. We design with beauty in mind — offering 12 stock colors or custom color matching — and test for performance and strength to ensure our vinyl windows are perfect for all projects and climates.
So, what are the best windows for new home construction? Easy, Paradigm vinyl windows. The style is up to you.