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November 17th, 2010 7:33 AM by David W. Welch
Window treatments, the blinds and drapes that are used to decorate and shade your rooms can actually do a lot more to improve your home and help it sell in a competitive market. The right kind of window covering can help insulate and save energy costs, offer remote control convenience, reduce noise, and provide a nice view or daylighting while preserving privacy and protecting from harmful UV rays. Visually, they can also drastically change how a room feels or even how big it appears. Presentation can greatly affect the initial impression buyers have of your rooms and whether they’ll stay interested in your property.
An attractive feature to present buyers with is energy efficient window treatments, which will help reduce cooling and heating costs during warm or cold months. It’s important to make sure your windows themselves are well insulated first, but adding a thermal curtain or a honeycomb shade will improve the insulation of a home and help keep the heat in or out, so heating is used less. The honeycomb shades or cellular blinds as they’re also known have a special design that traps air in pockets between the folds. When fitted close to the window, these can help stop the transfer of heat. Install approved energy efficient window treatments soon, and you may even be eligible to receive tax credits from the government. Ideally, you’ll install these months before a sale and be able to record the savings on your utility bills to share, but you can also present the energy saving information provided by manufacturers.
Another improvement to consider is upgrading to remote control shades or adding an electrical curtain track to automate your window treatments. Home automation is easier to add and integrate now more than ever. Companies like Lutron and Somfy offer various low or high voltage automated systems can be controlled by a wireless wall panel or TV style remote. The motors are constantly being improved and are much quieter now than when initially introduced into the commercial market. There are some new systems that can easily be installed by handy homeowners, but you will most likely still want to hire a licensed professional to make sure the voltage requirements and wiring are done correctly. Once installed, a motorized shade system will offer the convenience of controlling multiple shades, which are often heavy or in hard to reach places. This is especially helpful if someone is ever incapacitated or unable to work the window coverings manually. They’re also a big plus for buyers with young children, who may be worried about dangerous manual cords. If you can afford the addition, it’s a great feature to showcase when selling your home.
It doesn’t have to cost a lot to make window treatment improvements, though. Curtains can be very inexpensive depending on where you buy them, so this would be a good way to go if you don’t have much money to spend, but still want to add something to improve your home’s décor. Curtains and fabric window treatments can give a relaxed, cozy touch to a room and help soften the general look as well. This is a very versatile choice as there are a wide range of colors and fabrics to choose from, but it would probably be wise to stay with neutral colors that are more broadly accepted.
Solar shades, which are usually flat and function much like roller shades are designed like semi-transparent screens that allow the view to be enjoyed, while giving privacy by blocking most visibility into the windows. They also have the added benefit of blocking many harmful UV rays while still allowing daylight to filter in. This will help prevent furniture and interiors from fading as well as protect from the skin damaging UV exposure at home. Solar shades are a very beneficial addition to a home that can be combined well and layered with other window treatment ideas for more privacy and function.
If window treatments aren’t updated, especially if they’re looking old or broken, the buyer could be quickly put off. It is important to factor in the costs of window treatments if you are moving and many buyers will appreciate not having to deal with it. If you update the windows before they buy, you reduce their costs and make your home a more attractive option for home buyers looking for affordability and style. When you pay attention to the window coverings, you end up with a better look to any space. This can easily add the impression of distinct style and even luxury, allowing you to have selling points that put your property above the others in a busy market.