Building owners may make the final decision on improvements for their properties – yet it’s the tenants who have to literally and figuratively pay the price and deal with the consequences on a daily basis. Windows are the weakest link of a building, in terms of heat flow and air infiltration; however, landlords will not typically pay the significant expense for new windows until it is immediately necessary.
Interior windows are an alternative to replacement windows, and are significantly less expensive. They install easily on the inside of existing windows, requiring no structural reinforcement or alternation of original fixtures. Because of their nonintrusive installation method, updating old, inefficient windows can be done by tenants without breaking any agreements with the landlords.
Why should tenants consider taking improvements into their own hands with interior windows?
• Energy Costs
Poorly insulated windows contribute to high monthly utility bills because they allow heat to flow out of the building through the glass and frames, making heating, ventilation, and air condition (HVAC) systems work harder. Interior window systems improve the thermal performance of the glass by creating an air gap to prevent heat loss during cold months. Low-e glazing on the glass blocks infrared and ultraviolet heat from coming into the room in warm months, while still allowing visible light in. The temperature will be more comfortable without constantly running your HVAC systems at full capacity.
• Sound Control
Leaky windows also bring in noise from surrounding rooms, as well as outdoor traffic noise. In densely populated areas, tenants may not even be able to carry on conversations during certain times because of excessive noise. Interior windows can soundproof a room and reduce noise levels by more than 50%. This is achieved through insulating any air leakage, as well as from the laminated glass that creates a barrier seal to prevent outside noise from penetrating into the building.
What tenant financing options are available for interior windows?
Landlords may be willing to pay for interior windows as a condition for tenants renewing their lease. Even if tenants do pay out-of-pocket, the monthly energy savings and possible tax credits may make it a profitable investment.
Scenario 1 – Tenants who are near the end of their lease can leverage the renewal to negotiate the landlord to cover the costs of the interior window system. The low upfront expense may be a worthwhile investment for landlords to guarantee tenant occupancy in commercial spaces, while tenants can enjoy the monthly savings of lower utility bills.
Scenario 2 – Tenants in the midst of a lease or in a desired area can still benefit from interior windows, even if they cover the entire cost. Not only will the sound control improve the comfort and stress levels while making it easier to conduct business or personal conversations, the energy efficiency measures will maintain temperature and reduce HVAC usage and associated monthly costs. Interior window systems may also make tenants eligible for tenant improvement tax credits.
RetroWAL™ is a DIY interior curtain wall retrofit system, perfect for both commercial and residential tenants who wish to save on installation costs. The installation can be quickly and easily performed by a maintenance staff or local window company. Contact Thermolite today to learn more about how our DIY interior window system can help you save time and money while improving your building’s window performance.
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The Thermolite engineering staff is an innovative structural, energy modelling, and implementation team that works to create unique window systems alternatives to traditional replacement windows. Our systems protect against blasts, hurricanes, and sound, while being energy efficient and quick and easy to install. We serve a wide range of industry buildings including government, military, historical, schools and universities, financial, health care, hospitality, and offices. Contact us today to learn how we could update your building’s window systems.