Using Windows and Doors to Make Your Home More Secure
Guest Blogger Theo Schmidt is back to offer some simple tips and tricks to making your home more safe and secure. Window Genie offers an extensive selection of privacy and security films to increase safety in any home or office. When selecting a lock, film, alarm or any other variety of security measure... always do your research and find what works best for your home or office's needs. The more you know, the safer you are!
What many homeowners do not realize is that many home intruders are able to just walk right into your home through your front door. There is almost no struggle at all to break into a home through an insecure window or unlocked door. Luckily there are a few things that homeowners can do to secure their homes through improving their windows and doors.
Selecting a Lock
If you’ve ever tried shopping for a lock, you know how many options there are out there. There are different brands and grades that all offer different levels of security. It can be difficult to know exactly what you’ll need. An expensive lock may offer more security but the cost could be double or triple that of a less expensive brand.
One thing is for certain; a cheap lock will definitely compromise your security. Cheaper locks are easier for burglars to manipulate because these locks often have a less unique key locking system. This makes your home more vulnerable to break-ins.
There are a few specifications that your front door lock should meet:
· For deadbolts, the bolt should go one inch into the door frame.
· The lock should be a grade one.
· Make sure your door jamb is reinforced to match the security of your lock.
Don’t be afraid that a bulky lock will take away from the look of your custom doors. There are a number of companies that offer great selections of stylish locks that will actually add a great accent to your front door.
One simple solution for making your windows more secure is purchasing security film to cover them. This film is often used in vehicles and business’s windows to keep them from shattering in the event of a crash or natural disaster. However, these films also work great in your home to protect you against break-ins.
When a security film is properly applied it can prevent burglars from breaking into your home by shattering a window or other glass pane. The film keeps the glass shards together instead of letting the window break and scatter. When these films are correctly or professionally installed, they do not show at all. Additionally, these films can come in different colors and tints so they will give your windows an extra accent look if you’re interested.
Extra Tips and Tricks
If your front door has glass panes in it, the panes should be at least forty inches away from the door knob. This will prevent burglars from breaking the glass and then reaching in to open the door.
Another trick to keeping your windows safer is putting a six inch dowel in your window so that it cannot be opened up more than six inches. Window locks are more difficult to secure than door locks, so they are easier to break into. However, by keeping the window from opening up enough you can prevent burglars from getting in that way.
There are additional tricks to securing your windows and more secure:
· Install window break alarms that will notify you if a window is broken.
· Move valuables so they cannot be seen through windows.
· Purchase newer windows since older ones tend to pop out of their tracks easier.
· Secure air conditioning units in windows.
Your home may not be as secure as you’d like, but there are small and simple things you can do to improve the security. Start with your windows and doors to prevent those easy break-ins. With some easy steps you’ll be sleeping sounder knowing that you’ve decreased the risk of a burglary.
Theo Schmidt is a freelance blogger who enjoys spending time in the outdoors, and is passionate about protecting the environment.
David Flax’s fall from exec recruiting to window washing was a crash course on resilience, happiness and what really matters
The full story can be found online at Life Re-imagined
READ THAT STORY. We’re so incredibly lucky to have this dynamic husband/wife duo on TEAM GENIE: David and Jen Flax. They’ve been through “heaven, hell and beyond” together. Losing their business and then ultimately their home after the market crashed, these two were forced to create a new path to success for their family.
Their story is not unlike what many Americans were experiencing just a few years ago. What set these two apart was their strength and willingness to do what it took to be successful and happy. They spent the last of their savings to open a Window Genie franchise and haven’t looked back. They believed in the system, believed in themselves and are now Window Genie’s fastest growing franchise.
Through this story we’re reminded why we love franchising. At Window Genie we believe we offer a unique opportunity for entrepreneurs. Our proven system, executive model and marketing driven business approach makes success as a Window Genie franchise owner possible to nearly anyone. It doesn’t matter where you come from or what you’ve done, success as a business owner is attainable by anyone with a passion to persevere.
We’re proud of you guys!
Robin McKenna of Central, NJ
Robin McKenna, new Window Genie franchise owner in Central New Jersey has a special, emotional story about her journey to business ownership. Robin was laid off from her job of 20 years but was able to see past the negative and truly embrace the unfortunate situation as a “blessing in disguise.”
Her story is very representative of the way many individuals become business owners. The Window Genie story is one that’s full of entrepreneurs who didn’t actualize their dream of business ownership until forced to make a choice. Their choices were between taking a chance and opening a business… or sticking to what they were comfortable doing, even if that meant being under-appreciated, over-worked and under-paid. We’re proud of the individuals that make up TEAM GENIE because they all had the guts to follow their dreams, take control of their own success and find happiness.
Below is a media announcement that was released about Robin’s grand opening. It details the circumstances leading up to her choice to purchase a Window Genie franchise. She, like so many before her, just needed a little push in the right direction. She’s now able to spend more time with family while still working hard and making a living that she’s proud of. She is the boss!
New business owner says layoff was a blessing, I have my life back
Robin McKenna, owner of Window Genie of Central NJ, says business ownership has given her the freedom to create her own schedule, be in control of her success and have the work-life balance she missed in her previous career.
Cincinnati, OH – Window Genie announces the grand opening of their newest location in Princeton, NJ on Monday March 17th. Robin McKenna is the owner/operator. Window Genie is a nationally ranked home services franchise offering window cleaning, window tinting, pressure washing, gutter cleaning and much more. Window Genie of Central NJ and Bucks County, PA will service the Princeton area and surrounding communities, as well as Bucks County, PA. A ribbon cutting ceremony will take place on Tuesday March 18th at 5:00pm at the Princeton Chamber of Commerce at 182 Nassau St. Suite #301 in Princeton. All are welcome to attend.
Before joining the Window Genie team, McKenna spent 20 years at a medical device company in sales and marketing, more recently in global marketing developing and commercializing products worldwide. In July 2012 her position was eliminated. McKenna said, “I did what most people do after a layoff. I looked for a similar job because it’s what I was used to. I knew in my heart that I could not go back and feel secure or happy, though.” After some time off, McKenna realized the “blessing in disguise” she was granted by being unemployed. “I had always wanted to be home more while my children were in high school and my daughter was a sophomore and my son was in 6th grade at the time. Also, unfortunately my parents were having some health issues. I was granted this wish I had always had in the back of my mind to be home spending time with family. My mom would bring my dad to my house on her way to work to spend time with me and attend my children’s swim meets and other functions; it was truly a blessing to spend the precious time together as I decided what to do next.” McKenna was able to take away a piece of advice from her father before he passed away. He told her, “Take your passions and put them to work for yourself.” McKenna said, “His words and support really meant something to me. It helped me realize that it’s all about family, quality of life and working for you because the return is based on your efforts and decisions.”
McKenna stopped looking for another corporate job in June 2013 and began focusing solely on business ownership with her franchise coach, Bill McGuire of The Entrepreneur’s Source. “I began looking around online at business opportunities in late 2012 and must have left a cookie somewhere because I was approached by Bill. If he hadn’t contacted me, I don’t know where I would be now. His guidance was so essential to getting me where I am today at Window Genie.” They discussed McKenna’s strengths, weaknesses, goals and interests to determine which business models would fit her best. Window Genie was one of them and, “shined amongst all others from the get-go,” says McKenna. What stood out to McKenna about the Window Genie business was the ability to offer multiple services to repeat customers. She said, “This would give me an opportunity to build relationships in the community and continue to serve that customer for years. Also, with the many different services Window Genie offers, there’s something for every home and every budget; I like that. Window Genie’s strong culture and give-back program, Windows 4 Wishes stood out to McKenna. She said, “The corporate team has such a strong, well defined culture. It’s something I’ll be sure I reflect in my business. When I hire a technician I’ll let them know that we work hard and we play hard, we contribute to our community and take pride in our work, values that were instilled in me by my mom and dad. These were values so clearly embedded in the Window Genie culture and I felt it just even talking to existing franchise partners during my discovery process. Everyone I talked to had such fantastic things to say about the business and the corporate team. It feels good to invest in team Genie; it’s an extended family that not only cares about the success of my business but the happiness and fulfillment it brings me.”
Window Genie located in Princeton, NJ officially opens for business on Monday March 17th. McKenna is excited, saying, “I can’t wait to get back to work and be able to provide people with things they really need and help improve the homes in my area. I’m providing jobs to people in my community and helping them build skills they can use in the future. I’m a planner and organizer so I feel prepared to take on the spring cleaning season after all the snow we’ve had and also being very customer oriented, I’m excited to just get out there and start building relationships based on professionalism and quality. Two years ago I was unhappy and felt stuck in the corporate world. Being laid off was a blessing that led me to Window Genie. I have my life back and control of my own destiny.” For more information about Window Genie of Central NJ and Bucks County PA, please contact Robin McKenna at 609-917-4338 or firstname.lastname@example.org To speak to Bill McGuire of The Entrepreneur’s Source about franchise opportunities, call 812-284-4665About Robin McKenna: Robin McKenna is a local born and bred Central New Jerseyan; she was born in Bucks County, PA and lived in Hamilton Township, NJ during the earlier part of her life until moving to Lawrenceville, NJ and calling that home until she married. She attended Rider University where she received both her Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree. Most of Robin’s family where born, raised and still reside in Central New Jersey and Bucks County, PA. Her mother, Harriet Hendricks Cook was born in Bucks County, PA and now a resident in her birth state. Her father, Robert Edward Cook was born in Mercer County NJ and was an inspiration to her starting her own business before his passing last year. Currently residing in Belle Meade, NJ, McKenna is now a proud small business owner servicing the communities she loves to call home. McKenna has been very involved in the community, serving as a Girl Scout Leader, United Way Day of Caring organizer, and a member of the Somerset Valley YMCA parent board and parent volunteer. She plans to get her business involved in giving back to the community.
This fantastic article from The Walton Tribune in the greater Atlanta area describes Dow Lively's journey to business ownership. Dow officially opened Window Genie of Loganville on Monday February 24th. We're excited to have him on TEAM GENIE - Congrats, Dow!
Posted: Wednesday, March 5, 2014 12:00 am
By: Raquel Willis
Loganville local Dow Lively is looking to make a clean sweep after the opening of his incarnation of Window Genie on Feb. 24.
The franchise offers specialized home services such as window and gutter cleaning, window tinting, pressure washing and cleaning.
With an atypical road to business ownership, Lively’s interest in the franchise developed after being laid off from his previous job in August 2013.
“Over a period of a couple months, nothing was happening so I got rather frustrated with that. I started to examine the franchise world and I got in touch with a coach for franchises,” Lively said. “I happened to get one that was very good. He asked some questions. I had to do a personality profile. He started suggesting different franchises I could probably fit into with my background and personality.”
It took a month, but after examining the benefits that Window Genie could provide to Loganville, he finalized plans and decided to go into the home service industry.
“Window Genie always stood out for its simplicity. I wanted something that wasn’t high tech, had low overhead and would connect me to the community,” Lively said. “Also, being able to offer a variety of services to fit every home’s needs and budget is great.”
Window Genie’s appeal also came with a high rating by his coach and an increased rating through Forbes Magazine over the past decade.
“I felt good that this was something I had a chance at succeeding at,” Lively said.
His confidence stemmed from his 18 years of experience working in construction, sales and management. Many of the same principles that he learned in that line of work spills over into business ownership and his plans for the franchise.
“For me to be a successful salesperson, I have to believe in the product, I have to deliver the product and you have to be able to talk to people with a straight face to sell the product,” Lively said. “Sales techniques are pretty much standard in any industry, but you’ve got to have a style for whatever it is that you’re selling. Over a period of years, I guess I’ve learned enough and developed a style of sales.”
The past month has been focused around training from corporate officials and making sure that Lively is set with a proper foundation for the business.
“I got to hear from the guys in the system what worked, how they felt about the potential of their business and it helped me make my decision‚“ said Lively. “After I left my week of training at the corporate office in Cincinnati I felt very comfortable with the decision I made. This will be a challenge but that’s what makes it exciting. I just want to get out there and see what I’m made of.”
Their first week revolved around getting their name out in the community and figuring out the preliminary concerns that all businesses have in the beginning.
“We are getting more calls already this week, but it’s going to take a while to get the name recognition and proper advertising,” Lively said.
The existence of this service in Loganville represents a situation in which customers won’t have to travel miles for more specialized services. There’s a convenience that Window Genie is trying to foster.
“(Locals) have a window service company right here in town and they don’t have to go all the way to Atlanta or Athens. We just want to do a lot of work locally,” Lively said. “I’ve always worked with national contractors and all over the southeast, but now I’m finally figuring out what the community is and where it is.”
For more information contact Dow Lively at email@example.com or 770-680-7844.
You love the look of your windows after they’ve been detailed by a professional company. But you don’t have to deal with staring out dirty windows between your semi-annual window cleanings. Your home cleaning solutions won’t replace a professional cleaning service but they can keep you satisfied with the state of your windows in the meantime. Whether you want to see big city Los Angeles or small town Newmarket, windows this clean will help you be able to see clearly no matter where you are.
Keeping your windows in a shiny state isn’t as difficult as it may seem and can be made easier when you follow these five helpful hacks. Remember that these tips are only to be used for interior cleaning. Always leave any hard to reach windows that would require a ladder to the professionals. As pleasant as it is to have clean windows, it isn’t worth sacrificing your safety for.
1. Ditch the Newspaper
It’s become a pretty common practice for people to recycle the newspaper lying around their house by using it in place of paper towels. This is a smart and environmentally friendly practice. However, the number one complaint about this practice is all the ink you usually end up with on your hands.
To avoid the ink stains covering your fingers, pick up an unused paper coffee filter and use that instead. Like newspaper, coffee filters help to keep your windows from streaking. But unlike newspaper, it won’t leave dark marks all over your hands and window pane.
2. Learn How to Squeegee
Most people want the bright shine of a clean window but avoid cleaning it because they are afraid of creating unsightly streaks. If you still can’t avoid streaks, even with the coffee filter method, watch a few YouTube videos on proper squeegeeing techniques.
You can purchase a small squeegee for inside your home from most home improvement stores. Remember to wipe the blade between each swipe and change it when it gets dull. This will keep your windows brighter and more see through.
3. Make Your Own Cleaner
When you hear “homemade cleaners” do you roll your eyes before you go back to your Pine Sol and Windex? Some home-brewed cleaners can be a tricky balance of water, ammonia, and other random household liquids. To clean your windows though, all you need is water, vinegar, and dish soap. Two parts water to one part soap and one part vinegar will suffice, although there are plenty of different measurements that will all yield positive results.
Spray (but don’t drench) your windows with this cleaner before wiping it away. Then rinse your window with a small amount of water to avoid any film build up from the dish soap. Be careful to avoid adding too much dish soap to your formula for this reason.
4. Use a Blackboard Eraser
If even after following these strategies those streaks are still driving you insane, head to your local craft store and pick up a new blackboard eraser. It won’t erase all of your problems but rubbing it across your window will get rid of those pesky streaks.
A soft, static-free shirt or cloth diaper can also help to eliminate streaks on your windows. The trick is finding something that will get rid of streaks but not leave behind an additional residue of lint or dust.
5. Take Care of the Details
When it comes to windows, the perfection is in the details. It isn’t enough to have a window that you can see out of. You want to be able to see perfect out of it from any angle, at any time of day.
To avoid water marks on the edges, wipe your cleaner or water with a soft t-shirt or even a Q-tip. If you’ve noticed some intense scratches in your windows, buff them out with a non-gel toothpaste. If you have the remains of a sticker or decal on your window, rubbing alcohol will help to get the gunk off. Look through your window at every detail to get it cleaned to perfection.
Theo Schmidt is a freelance blogger who enjoys spending time in the outdoors, and is passionate about protecting the environment. For new and improved windows, visit the Northern Comfort Windows website.
What makes Window Genie a great opportunity for young entrepreneurs today?
Window Genie has been experiencing record growth this year. We're all about creating opportunities for determined entrepreneurs who are looking to take control of their own success and be their own boss. Window Genie has proved to be a fantastic option for entrepreneurs today, especially young entrepreneurs. For example, we recently awarded a franchise to Matthew Johnson of Kansas City, MO. He's just 27 years old, our youngest franchise partner ever! About buying a Window Genie franchise, Matthew said, "I knew as a first time business owner that franchising was the best option for me. I was looking to join a system that would offer someone like me exceptional support. I'm also looking to continue to grow and build something I can have for years to come." Although most of our owners are young at heart, young means 35 years old or younger in this case. About 20% of Window Genie's franchise owners either are, or were under 35 when they purchased their business. What is it about Window Genie that has young entrepreneurs excited?
Window Genie was recently featured in the October 3rd issue of USA Today in an article titled Franchisors Target Young, Ambitious Franchisees. In it, Window Genie Founder and CEO, Rik Nonelle explains why franchising in general is a good option for young people, “Young people today are facing tough job market with limited opportunities to reach their full potential. Owning a franchise offers those in their 20s and 30s a chance to take control and determine their own success. Instead of an entry level job working for ‘the man’ they can start at the top as their own boss.”
Rik knows firsthand what it’s like to start a business young; he started Window Genie in Cincinnati, OH as a local window cleaning business when he was only 29. In the USA Today article he also says, “What we love about young entrepreneurs is that they keep an open mind, accept guidance and have the energy and drive to really make things happen. We’re a great fit for young franchisees because we’re affordable and our owners can work from home, which requires a lower initial investment and allows our franchise owners to focus on growing their business.”
As we continue to grow, Window Genie encourages young entrepreneurs to learn about the Window Genie opportunity. Owning a Window Genie franchise allows for long-term sustainable growth; our franchise agreement defines a term as 10 years in business. Window Genie has always been committed to maintaining a strong, reliable, supportive system for franchisees to follow. Window Genie was ranked #44 overall for franchisee satisfaction by Franchise Business Review. We were ranked #4 in our category (mid size franchise). We strive for longevity in the business, and to deliver the happiness and success factors our owners were seeking when they decided to purchase a franchise.
To learn more about how to BE YOUR OWN BOSS visit the Window Genie online virtual brochure at windowgeniefranchise.com
Window Film for Security and Privacy
Window film to the rescue!
We've talked about the benefits of window film or window tint, but what most don't realize is how incredibly effective it is when used for security purposes. Yes, window film helps reduce the sun's effect on your interior furnishings and will cut your energy use and utility bills, but when put to the test recently, we've seen window film act as a solid defense against intruders!
In Cincinnati and Des Moines, two commercial businesses that had Window Genie install security film experienced attempted break-ins recently.
In Des Moines, the store front's windows were hit with a cinder block repeatedly before the intruder gave up and left. In Cincinnati, the store front's door was hit with a brick until the alarm went off and the intruders took off. Window film and a security system go together like peanut butter and jelly!
In both cases the window film acted as it was designed to; the glass was much stronger... making it difficult to break at all. In both cases, the intruders were not able to get through the glass as when it cracked, the window film held the shards together much like a car windshield.
Both customers are completely satisfied given nothing was stolen. They have since had their glass replaced and re-filmed. Talk about a return on your investment! Each store had the potential to lose extreme amounts of merchandise and money, had they been robbed. Window film to the rescue!
Another great example of using window film for security or privacy is in Fort Worth, Texas. A local elementary school had Window Genie of Fort Worth install privacy film on their cafeteria windows that looked out onto a public sidewalk and street. The school hoped to increase privacy for the kids and staff without having to install blinds or anything that would decrease natural light and a view to the outside. The school chose to install film to protect the children's privacy from passersby and thus enhance security as no one would ever know if the cafeteria was full or empty.
Window film is such an incredible product because it really does serve a purpose for just about anyone. Its versatility gives it purpose in every home and business. If you're looking to cut down on glare, reduce energy consumption, lower your utility bills, protect your hardwood floors and furniture, or add to the privacy and security to your home or office, call Window Genie! Find your local Genie on our locator map here
Window Genie's Give Back Program, Windows 4 Wishes
Window Genie's culture is defined by our effort to constantly improve and lead in these 5 aspects of our business:
1. Market Share
3. Customer Satisfaction
5. Community Citizenship
Service: To offer free Window Genie services such as window cleaning, window tinting or pressure washing to the charity/organization of choice. Donate: To donate goods or money to the charity or organization of choice. Promote: To publicly endorse and campaign for the name and mission of the charity/organization of choice. Volunteer: The franchise partner may choose to give time by himself or with employees on behalf of WG, towards assisting and improving to the betterment of the charity/organization of choice
To uphold our fifth pillar of Community Citizenship Window Genie has continually found ways to give back to the communities we live and work in. The creation of our program Windows 4 Wishes in late 2011 has encouraged franchisees across the country to get creative and give back to show who they are as small business owners.They're urged to give back to the organization, charity, school, church etc in their community in any of these following 4 ways:
Who you are, not just what you do
Through Windows 4 Wishes, our owners are able to express to their customers and community who they are, not just what they do. Window Genie owners are making a real effort to give back and stay active in their local communities and give to those people and causes they and their family really care about. Since this program has been in place, Window Genie has been able to affect over 30 different organizations including Habitat for Humanity, Make-A-Wish, Meals on Wheels, Ronald McDonald House Charities and oh so many more. Ask your local Genie what he or she is doing to make a difference in your local community!
IMPORTANT TIPS FOR CLEANING GLASS
Cleaning your windows, mirrors, tables or other glass surfaces seems like a breeze. A squirt of your favorite glass cleaner and a paper towel should to the trick… right? WRONG! Oh so very wrong. Glass is a delicate, porous surface that requires much more careful cleaning than most people may realize.
Why should I have my windows professionally cleaned?
If you’ve ever asked this, I have the answer! Well for one, it’s dangerous! Any kind of laborious work done on a ladder imposes a level of risk. Cleaning a whole house worth of windows is also time consuming and requires more supplies and know-how than most would expect. You can avoid wasting a whole day cleaning your windows only to have a so-so outcome by hiring professional help. At Window Genie, all technicians are fully trained, bonded, insured and have passed a background check. You can identify them by the GENIEMOBILE they’ll roll up in and by their ID badges. These guys and gals get the job done and leave your home in a new and improved state! Backed by our “Streak-Free Guarantee,” Window Genie is your leader in home services, known to clean windows and a whole lot more.
WHY window cleaning is important
Cleaning windows is not like cleaning a mirror or other glass surfaces inside your home.
Windows are constantly exposed to the elements of rain, snow, temperature change and wind to name a few. Glass is a porous, sponge-like surface that will develop buildup of dust, dirt and various minerals over time. When these penetrate, it can cause staining and permanent damage. Replacing your windows is extremely expensive and completely avoidable. Your local Genie can help you determine your home’s specific needs and how often you should have your windows cleaned.
IN THE LONG-RUN
Maintaining your windows will add to the look and value of your home. If you are ever to sell your home, inspectors do take into account how well maintained the home is, and yes that includes the windows. Having sparkling clean windows WILL add to the curb appeal of your home. If they seem to need replacing, potential buyers will see this as a red flag. If you think of it this way, cleaning your windows is a solid investment for resale.
Cleaning do's, don'ts and fun facts
Many of the leading brands of glass cleaner contain harmful chemicals such as ammonia. Window Genie does not; we use products that are gentle on the environment as well as you, your family and your pets
Window Genie recommends using a microfiber towel when cleaning glass over paper towels or even newspaper. Here's why: Although both paper towels and newspapers are effective, they're both wasteful. Re-using a microfiber towel is another small way you and your family can go green with Window Genie! Besides that, microfiber towels are the most absorbent fabric you can use to clean glass, or any surface. Microfiber towels won't leave behind those pesky "fuzzies" on your glass like paper towels or an old rag might. No streaks, no smears, no worries!
To purchase a can of WG-57 Glass Cleaner, click here!