What Are Factory Direct Replacement Windows?
I looked up “factory direct” on Wikipedia and here is what I found:
“Disintermediation initiated by consumers is often the result of high market transparency, in that buyers are aware of supply prices direct from the manufacturer. Buyers bypass the middlemen (wholesalers and retailers) to buy directly from the manufacturer, and pay less. Buyers can alternatively elect to purchase from wholesalers. Often, a business-to-consumer electronic commerce (B2C) company functions as the bridge between buyer and manufacturer.”
That clears it up, right?
When it comes to the purchase of replacement windows, factory direct means different things to different people.
You see, some Central Florida replacement window companies who install replacement windows buy their windows from a local depot. The depot is the one who gets their windows for resale directly from the factory, but if you get your windows and they came through a dealer who bought them through a depot who bought them from the factory, that’s not even close to factory direct.
Then there are some replacement window companies who may have worked with a particular manufacturer for long enough or have purchased enough that they earn the right to buy their windows directly from the factory, rather than ordering them through the depot. They sometimes call themselves factory direct, because they bought the windows they intend to sell you directly from the factory. I’ve even seen some of these guys advertise that they are factory direct. It’s misleading, isn’t it? They buy your windows from the factory and then they sell them to you. Is that factory direct? Of course not! They are a dealer- a middleman.
When it comes to replacement windows or patio doors, here’s what factory direct means to me:
1) Factory Direct means you buy your windows directly from the factory. Their name and factory address is on your purchase order. Then they custom build and install them for you, and provide whatever service you may need.
2) Factory Direct means you do not support any middlemen with your purchase. You can get a superior product for a very reasonable price, just like Wikipedia says.
3) Factory Direct means that if you ever have a problem you can call the folks who you ordered your replacement windows from- the factory. They won’t have to call anyone else to solve issues. It’s what NewSouth Window calls single source accountability. That’s powerful peace of mind.
There’s no middle men and no potential finger pointing if something goes wrong. The dealer says it’s the factory’s fault, and the factory blames the issue on the installers, and while they battle it out, you, the customer, live with the issues- not if it’s truly factory direct!
Phil Stone, also known as “The Window Guy” is a contributor, trainer, and a Senior Representative for NewSouth Window. Can see more of his work at http://replacement-windows-tampa.com