U.S. demand for windows and doors to reach $40 billion in 2012
U.S. demand for windows and doors is forecast to rise 2.8 percent annually to $40
billion in 2012, a deceleration from the 2002-2007 pace, according to Windows & Doors, a new Freedonia study. Demand gains will be restrained by a subdued outlook for residential construction, which constitutes the largest market for windows and doors. While the U.S. housing market is projected to post a modest recovery through 2012, the level of housing completions will be only slightly higher than in 2007. Also restraining gains will be a slight decline in average floor space per new housing unit, which will mean the new homes will require fewer windows and doors. Spending on residential improvements is also expected to
moderate through 2012, limiting advances in the improvement and repair segment of
the residential market.
Demand for windows is projected to advance 3.7 percent per year through 2012, due to increasing interest in energy efficiency, according to the study. Consumers looking to reduce heating and cooling costs will replace older windows with more efficient models. Metal windows will account for the most rapid gains in demand through 2012. Demand for doors will grow 2.4 percent per year through 2012, reaching $23.2 billion. Plastic doors will account for the most rapid gains in demand, as consumers opt for fiberglass entry doors and fiberglass or vinyl patio doors.
Overall, plastic is the window and door material expected to enjoy the best growth, with demand for plastic products projected to grow 4.9 percent per year, according to the study. Gains will be led by the low cost of plastic windows and doors compared to wood and metal products, as well as the increasing recognition of the superior performance properties of plastic windows and doors.
Wood windows and doors will continue to account for the largest share of overall window and door demand, totaling 41 percent in 2012, according to the study. Through 2012, however, demand for wood products will advance at a below-average pace, primarily due to the high cost of wood products compared to less expensive plastic items. Wood products are increasingly seen as high-end products that increase the values of the structures in which they are installed. Wood windows and doors are predominantly used in residential construction applications, especially among middle-income and more affluent homeowners.