How much do custom windows cost?

Custom windows are an excellent option whether you’re trying to impress a client you’re designing and building for, or if you’re a reseller trying to find unique options to add to your inventory. 

They simply add a level of quality that you don’t get with off-the-shelf options, and regardless of what role you play in the market, the end user is sure to be impressed. 

However, the word “custom” tends to conjure up images of budget-busting costs, and many professionals opt to stay away from them. That’s a misguided approach. 

Today, we’re going to compare how much custom windows cost relative to off-the-shelf, mass-produced, options, and we’ll discuss what makes any potential price hikes worthwhile in the long run. 

Let’s get started. 

How Much Do Custom Windows Cost Compared to Off-the-Shelf Options?

There’s no getting around it. Custom windows do cost a little bit more than comparable off-the-shelf options.

There are a few reasons for this that we’ll get into later, but it’s important not to focus too much on the initial price tag without comparing the full value of the purchase you’re making.

How much do custom windows cost - black window frame.

First, the national average for custom windows ranges between $400 and $4000. In comparison, you’ll spend roughly $100 to $400 per window for standard double-hung windows. 

On average, this is between a 25% and 75% markup per window without factoring in installation fees and other factors. 

Because of the wide variety of window types that all vary in price, the differing labor fees for any type of custom window, and many other factors, we can’t just give you a concrete number that applies to most situations.

In general, the simpler a window design is, or the simpler the customization you’re making, the lower the cost will be. As such, if you go for more popular window designs that often have more luxurious materials and higher labor requirements, the price will climb a bit.

Why Do Custom Windows Cost More? 

A 25% to 75% markup seems steep when you’re just looking at the price tag, and you might be wondering why custom windows demand such a markup. After all, it’s the same manufacturing process as off-the-shelf windows, right? 

Wrong. 

There are several reasons that the markup on custom windows is what it is. 

Here are the main ones.

1: Manpower is Diverted

First, manufacturers are a lot like well-oiled machines. Regardless of the scale of the business, making off-the-shelf windows allows all the company’s manpower to focus on repetitive crafting tasks, and the product is made faster.

Since more product is made, more can be sold, and revenue goes up. 

When custom windows are ordered, whether they’re made from scratch or simply customizations of existing windows, a small-batch order has to be made, and the entire manufacturing process is thrown off. 

Whether a couple of craftsmen have to go off on their own to handle the order, or the entire production process has to stop, it’s kind of like throwing a wrench into a well-oiled machine, and prices have to go up to make up for that lack of revenue-generating efficiency. 

The markup helps offset that inconvenience so the manufacturer can offer great products without going bankrupt or raising prices overall.

2: The Added Work 

It takes a lot more time and attention to detail to make something specifically from a customer’s request. With a normal production run, a template can be made, and the manufacturing process can be streamlined. 

For a custom production run of maybe 20 windows, a designer has to work closely with the client to design the window, create a template, and then make all the customizations or build whole new windows with a design that will only be used once.

How much do custom windows cost - a worker making window frames.

This is considerably more work, and the price reflects that.

3: Material Sourcing

Custom windows often require materials that aren’t part of the manufacturer’s existing stock. For example, a designer might want an existing design template done in a luxury wood instead of the oak that it’s made of by default in a normal production run. 

Let’s say the manufacturer doesn’t have that luxury wood on hand. The manufacturer has to order that expensive luxury material for a one-off project, and any leftover materials might not be used again. All those leftovers are wasted, and that costs.

The markup helps offset that extra cost, as well.

Factors that Affect Custom Window Prices

Now that you know why custom windows have a markup, it’s important to understand what you can do to keep your costs down as much as possible. 

Here are the main factors that affect how much your custom window order will cost. By knowing these, you can make purchasing decisions that get you high-quality custom windows without going over budget.

1: Materials

This will be the biggest factor because materials have such a large impact on the cost of practically everything. 

If your custom order includes a lot of luxurious materials that simply cost more to work with, your overall costs will be much higher

You can help mitigate this factor by carefully thinking about which materials need to be the highest quality possible and which parts of the windows you can afford to choose cheaper options for. 

The point of custom windows is typically to create something a lot more luxurious, but that doesn’t have to include every part of the window, and on top of that, sometimes customizations are more aimed at meeting design elements of the project rather than luxury.

In both cases, there are usually areas where you can afford to use standard materials on some or all of the orders to reduce costs.

2: Complexity of the Window Design

It takes more time, effort, and expertise to craft a highly intricate window than it does something incredibly basic. 

Depending on the project you’re building or renovating, it’s not always a good idea to simplify things, but when you can, you can typically get better prices with a lower markup.

3: The Source

Just like any other product, where you buy custom windows factors into the cost a lot. Different services have various partnerships, supply-line infrastructures, manpower, and more that all affect how they have to price their products. 

You can greatly affect how much ordering custom offers will affect your bottom line by “window shopping” multiple custom window suppliers to find one that offers the right price. 

However, while doing this, understand that you’re not just buying windows. You’re dealing with a larger service, and you’ll get various benefits and drawbacks from each one that have to be considered.

This is what we meant earlier by considering the overall value you’re getting instead of just the price tag.

Are Custom Windows Worth 25% to 75% More? 

We’ve compared how much custom windows cost relative to standard windows, explained why they cost that much, and discussed ways you can manage your company’s budget while ordering them, but are custom windows worth it?

Does that markup give you any benefits beyond being able to say the windows are “custom”? 

Well, you get quite a few benefits.

Here are the main benefits to consider that increase the overall value of custom windows

1: Offer Unique Options as a Reseller

Reselling can be extremely fruitful, but there’s one big catch. You’re only able to sell what you can buy at a good price, and your stock doesn’t have anything that truly sets it apart from other resellers.

Ordering custom windows can change that. 

If you have a design that is frequently requested, or you know of something that will sell well but no wholesalers have it, you can leverage custom window services to fill that void in the market and capitalize on it.

How much do custom windows cost - custom house windows.

As a reseller, every opportunity you get to corner an underserviced market is a great one. You can tap into demographics and individual customers that your competitors simply can’t.

2: Fit Non-Standard Projects

Let’s say you’re a builder, and your client has a non-standard housing project they’re contracting you for. Your designer brings you the plans, and you see that the dimensions and overall style of various features such as windows and doors just don’t match what’s on the market.

The market is generally built to serve a standard customer, and you can’t find anything to complete the project to specifications. 

Well, custom windows can help with that. Since you can order practically anything you want with a custom service, or even order changes to existing projects, you can have windows specifically made for those odd projects that have unique demands

This provides a solution to an otherwise complex problem that many contractors have to deal with when working on commissioned properties or other projects that stray from standard design practices.

3: Customer Satisfaction

Even if the custom windows aren’t being used for a luxury home, simply being able to say “We put custom windows in” automatically leaves a positive impression on your clients.

Knowing that their windows were specifically made for their home makes them stand out from other window options regardless of what materials are used, how complex the windows are, etc. 

This is one of the key pillars of any contractor or design business. You need to satisfy clients to keep them coming back, recommending you to friends, and generally building social proof that your business provides meaningful results. 

Custom windows are just a part of a larger project, but they have a considerable impact on a client’s appreciation for your work.

4: Create Unique, Stand-Out, Visual Effects

Windows affects the overall look of a building a lot more than you might think, and sometimes, if you want a project to stand out, the options available on the pre-made market just don’t cut it

Custom window services offer you the ability to get as creative as you want, and you can design something that is truly going to stand out from the rest of the buildings in similar markets. 

In many cases, this not only lets you put your design skills to work at their maximum level but also makes creating truly standard-defying projects possible for clients who simply don’t want what everyone else has.

5: Flexibility

Finally, custom window services offer you considerable flexibility with your projects. Especially if you choose the right windows supplier

With just one custom window service, you can get windows that match any project, and you can get any quality of window you want.

Essentially, you can handle the window portion of any project you do with one supplier instead of constantly having to shop around to find someone who offers what you want for each project individually.

How to Get Custom Windows

Now that you are aware of how much custom windows cost you need to get the best custom window supplier possible to ensure you get the most for that marked-up price. 

For that, the only place to go is Stately. 

Stately is your trusted partner for doors and windows, and we cater specifically to professionals in a variety of fields. Whether you’re a reseller looking for unique stock or to supplement your existing stock, a contractor building homes for high-profile clients, or a designer who wants to unleash their creativity to make a lasting impression.

Beyond the unmatched quality of our doors and windows, you also get several other benefits by partnering with us. 

We have our shipping infrastructure to get your windows and doors to you in record time and without the complications of using third-party services.

We offer a robust service network with physical locations in most states, and the best guarantees you can find to ensure that you’re satisfied with every purchase.

Contact us, and order your custom windows today!

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