Newpro is a brand of replacement windows that relies on salespeople coming to the house and demonstrating the product. There are many stories online about aggressive sales pitches and outrageous initial price quotes. One person was quoted $17,000 for 12 windows, another was told the price was $29,000 for 17 windows. Borrowing from the timeshare salesperson’s book of tricks, the window pitchman typically checks with his boss, and gets permission to lower the price several thousand dollars. The price still remains quite high, according to reports.
But that is not what this week’s Mouse Print* is about. It is about the 40% fuel savings guarantee that Newpro advertises on TV and on the Internet.
On their website, Newpro elaborates on their promise that you will “Save 40% on your Home Heating Costs — Guaranteed!*”
So far, so good, (except for having to replace all the windows in your house) until you follow the asterisk to the footnote:
**Restrictions apply. Fuel Savings Guarantee applies to homes where all windows are replaced with Newpro 2000 Windows. $500 limit applies. See Newpro Associate for details.
A $500 maximum? If the windows did not reduce your fuel costs at all, in order to earn the maximum refund, your heating costs could be no higher than $1250 a year. ($1250 x 40% = $500). For most homes, you probably pay much more than that annually for heat. Another example: if your fuel costs were $3000 last winter, and you only experienced a 20% reduction this coming season, you would only qualify for $500 of the $600 you were owed.
While the 40% fuel savings claim is a great marketing tool, by limiting the refund to $500 and only making it apply for the first year, your new Newpro windows may not ultimately save you as much money over their life as you might expect.
The even deeper details say they do not calculate your refund based on the costs of heating from last year to this, but rather on your consumption (with oil falling in price, this is a good thing). Additionally, only their high-end windows qualify. And, if it is a really cold winter this year (“abnormal weather conditions”), the claim will be reduced.
So if you plan to make a $10,000, $20,000 or $30,000 purchase of new windows, keep in mind that a possible refund of $500 is miniscule in comparison, for what many say are grossly overpriced windows.