Warranty on window preservation work

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johnleeke
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Full Name: John Leeke
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Warranty on window preservation work

Postby johnleeke » August 26th, 2011, 7:49 pm

Geoffrey Halsey, East Portland Sash & Carpentry Co. in Portland, OR, just sent me an email reminding me about a discussion on the business side of window work that we had when I was out there teaching a window preservation workshop earlier this year.

Geoffrey says, "I do remember you saying something like: because large manufacturers of windows offer their warranties based on calculated failure rates, it causes customers to expect the same kind of failure rate with our window preservation work."

I know that most window specialists don't offer a formal warranty, but simple go back and make any necessary touch ups or repairs that are needed for a reasonable period of time. Some make a point of going back 6 months or a year later, and following up even after that if they get a call from their customer.

At some point in the future the building owner will become responsible for ongoing maintenance, although when is not usually specifically discussed, and seldom mentioned in contracts or marketing documents.

In my own work I don't give a warranty. With most of my customers I have had an ongoing relationship, doing a few or several windows every year or so for five or ten years, so I'm on hand to do any needed touch ups. They get to know my work, and trust in me that I do good work.

I include a "one year later" round of work in the original contract. After that I am happy to do any needed maintenance work. In fact, it is a part of my marketing to call past customers every five years to offer any needed maintenance. They are usually happy to hear from me, and after 10 or 15 or 20 years some maintenance IS needed and I get a contract to do it.

Do your customers ask for a warranty? How do you handle "warranty" on your work?

Clearly there are significant differences in our work from the products offered by the disposable consumer economy manufacturers, and we may want to spell out that difference on the business side of this window work with this issue of warranties.

Do we want to offer a standard on how to warranty window preservation work?
John
Standards Co-Founder
Standards Editor

http://www.HistoricHomeWorks.com

sschoberg
Posts: 49
Joined: June 9th, 2011, 9:43 pm

Re: Warranty on window preservation work

Postby sschoberg » August 27th, 2011, 11:59 am

An ongoing relationship is the key for us. We spend a lot of time building a relationship with our customers We do a visit at 6 months and then again at one year and if we see any flaws on either visit we'll schedule a service call as quickly as possible. I want our customers to appreciate that there is maintenance after a restoration. Like you've said John we're only as good as the modern products we use, so those flaws from those short comings, within a reasonable amount of time will be fixed for no charge.
However at some point I will want to get paid for ongoing maintenance that needs to be done if the customer chooses us to do it. I do not want any of our customers to assume that a restoration means maintenance free. There is no such thing as we all know.

This is an important subject. I hope we have many inputs.

Steve S
Schoberg Restorations Inc

johnleeke
Posts: 375
Joined: April 13th, 2011, 7:34 pm
Full Name: John Leeke
Location: Portland
Organization: Historic HomeWorks
Permissions: Yes
Location: Portland, Maine
Contact:

Re: Warranty on window preservation work

Postby johnleeke » August 27th, 2011, 4:54 pm

Perhaps we should describe our window preservation work as "putting the windows into a condition that can be "effectively maintained."
John
Standards Co-Founder
Standards Editor

http://www.HistoricHomeWorks.com

sschoberg
Posts: 49
Joined: June 9th, 2011, 9:43 pm

Re: Warranty on window preservation work

Postby sschoberg » August 28th, 2011, 4:50 pm

I agree and think this is important.

and under this heading we could expand to include a typical schedule of maintenance expectations as a wood window ages.

Steve S
Schoberg Restorations Inc


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