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Sunrooms Are Conquering Every Wisconsin Season

Nov. 7, 2013

All-season sunrooms have become very popular in Wisconsin according to members of the Milwaukee/NARI Home Improvement Council, Inc., the area’s leading home improvement and remodeling industry resource for 52 years. Members identify improved technology and more diverse design options that are driving consumer demand for this style of home addition.

“From the 1970’s until about 10 years ago, sunroom technology didn’t change much. The windows were airtight, but the aluminum walls they were constructed with didn’t retain the heat in the room,” said Jude N. Tindall of S.E. Wisconsin Sunrooms in Twin Lakes. “Today, they are constructed with different materials like vinyl that are insulated with foam,” he added.

“Customers have been seeking all-season sunrooms for some time, but some saw it as a high-ticket item. Middle-income people ended up buying do-it-yourself versions that didn’t offer a variety of style options,” according to Tindall. “Now that there is a trend of people staying in their homes longer, homeowners view sunrooms as an investment,” he added.

“Today people can choose from a variety of options for their sunrooms. It is not a cookie-cutter business,” said Tindall. “Modern all-season sunrooms come in a variety of styles including wood finishes, with drywall and siding. These options allow you to match the existing home’s style so well that it looks like they were built as part of the original home,” he added.

“The biggest reason that sunrooms are now for all seasons is the improved technology of the glass,” said Chris Egner, MCR, UDCP, of Chris Egner Design-Build-Remodel/Four Season Sunrooms in New Berlin. “Previously, the challenge was to keep the room warm in the winter and cool during the summer. Today, some sunroom manufacturer’s glass options reflect the sun’s heat in the summer and also reflect the heat provided in the room back into the sunroom during the winter. This high-tech glass allows you to feel as comfortable in a sunroom as any room in the house all-year long,” he added.

“The all-season sunroom is popular because it allows in natural light, provides dramatic views, and can be designed to match any style of architecture. You can choose multiple styles and materials such as wood, vinyl, and aluminum,” said Egner. “It also allows for many heating options, including connecting the room to the existing duct work in the house or installing a separate system such as baseboard electric heating or radiant floor heat that uses tubes with hot water,” he added.

The Milwaukee/NARI Home Improvement Council was chartered in July 1961, as a Chapter of the National Home Improvement Council. In May of 1982, the National Home Improvement Council merged with the National Remodelers Association to form NARI – the National Association of the Remodeling Industry.

The Council’s goals of encouraging ethical conduct, professionalism, and sound business practices in the remodeling industry have led to the remodeling industry’s growth and made NARI a recognized authority in that industry. With over 740 members, the Milwaukee Chapter is the nation’s largest.

For more information or to receive a free copy of an annual membership roster listing all members alphabetically and by category, and the booklet, “Milwaukee/NARI's Remodeling Guide,” call 414- 771-4071 or visit the Council’s website at www.milwaukeenari.org.

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"Hidden Tosa" is a semi-regular feature where reporters Rory Linnane or Rachel Minske explore the closed down and closed off parts of Wauwatosa.

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