Window design often gets lost somewhere in between roofing, electrical engineering, HVAC, and everything else that custom home building entails. Nevertheless, it is an extremely important part of the overall design process. Windows are not only practical, providing the right insulation and security. They are also aesthetic and have the potential to add a unique style to your house.
The Right Window Design
Windows come in all different shapes and forms, and the importance of finding the right one for you cannot be overstated. According to the House Designers, about 10-15% of home building budgets are spent on windows and doors alone! While factors such as size and color will vary according to your individual preferences, we can help you determine the right style of windows for your custom home.
Awning window designs (pictured on the right) take their name from the sheets of canvas that stick out from stores and hotel buildings. They are hinged at the top, swinging vertically outward from the bottom whenever a crank or lever is turned. They generally open out to a 30o angle, which enables them to ventilate houses without letting rain in (wind notwithstanding).
Casement windows are much like awning ones, except they are hinged at the side and swing horizontally (rather than vertically) outward. In general, casement windows open from the center and can be opened all the way. They are one of the more basic window designs, being quaint, simple and generally less expensive.
Fixed windows are the most basic, simpler than even casement ones. They are not hinged, meaning they cannot be opened at all. Often called “picture windows,” they can offer scenic pictures of the South Florida coastline in the right custom beach house. They are the least expensive and most energy efficient, but are generally accompanied by other window designs such as casement or hung windows.
Hung windows (pictured on the left) are probably the most popular design for household windows. Unlike casement or awning windows, they are not hinged to swing outward. Rather, when unlocked their panes glide vertically (or sometimes horizontally). They come in two types: single-hung (with one movable pane) and double hung (with two movable panes).
Finally, there are sliding window designs. These are generally thought of as windows that function as doors, but they can be proper windows as well. Sliding (or rolling) windows are not hinged, but rather slide laterally. They do this by incorporating two or more panes, with one fixed and others movable, each about half the width of the window frame. They are considered a very contemporary design, as well as the most practical because of the insulation and security benefits they offer.