Quotation and Price FAQ's - Conservatory Blinds Limited
Conservatory Blinds at Night

PRICING, QUOTATIONS AND ORDERING FAQS

Click the questions to view the answers.

HOW CAN YOU OFFER A LOWEST PRICE GUARANTEE?

We are able to offer a Lowest Price Guarantee because we are a traditional business, rather than a Direct Sales company, so our size, costs and prices are based on being able to cope with the market as it has changed over the years. We have relatively low overheads compared to our volume of sales and only aim for a realistic profit margin.

When anyone receives an apparently cheaper quotation, it is nearly always for a much lower specification (oversized blinds, cheap fabric etc.). When we price for the same low specification, we often work out cheaper still (or at least similar in price).

The only time that we are normally “beaten” on price is when a salesman artificially reduces his price (because he doesn’t want to lose “the sale”). This is why we offer a Lowest Price Guarantee – because we are willing to cut our modest profit margins occasionally and at least provide you with a high specification installation.

We know that it is impossible to manufacture made-to-measure conservatory blinds any cheaper than we do because we actually make our own components (so don’t have to pay the prices that other companies do) are extremely efficient and have the benefit of scale. The only way that we could make blinds any cheaper would be to cut corners – but would actually save very little and would not only cause problems later on.

We would challenge any blind company to provide a written quotation using the same high specification for less money – without having started off with a much higher quotation and then artificially reducing the costs by significantly lowering the specification to a point where you aren’t receiving what you were led to believe.

Remember that it is the verbal comments of the salesmen that these companies use that gives you the impression of quality. Any company that spends millions of pounds a year on marketing, then pays everyone a high percentage of the order value to the telesesales, salesman, surveyor and blind fitter cannot stay in business unless customers are paying much higher prices or receiving a much lower specification.

WHY DO CONSERVATORY BLINDS COST MORE THAN DOMESTIC BLINDS?

It is simply a matter of quality and the fact that domestic components and fabrics do not last in the harsh environment of a conservatory, nor do they look or operate anywhere near as well. Domestic blinds suffice for the very short-term, even if they do not look, fit or operate as well, but this is very short-lived.

We believe that it is much better to provide the very highest quality conservatory blinds, for a few pounds more per blind, than to offer vastly substandard (but slightly cheaper) blinds.

There are four main reasons why genuine conservatory blinds tend to cost more than domestic blinds.

Quantity: Conservatories have many more panes of glass than an entire house (a typical PVC conservatory has 22 window blinds and 12 roof blinds). If you price even the simplest domestic roller blinds, you will see that conservatory blinds are not necessarily that expensive.

Labour: They are completely made-to-measure and so require us to visit you to survey your conservatory and then return to fit them. The cost of skilled labour and travelling has to be factored into the price. From a manufacturing point of view, our blinds are made by hand in the UK, whereas most domestic blinds are now made in China (where costs are lower) and are sold for DIY installation (without any measuring or fitting). This can obviously make domestic blinds seem very cheap indeed.

Complexity: Conservatory blinds are infinitely more complex to measure, manufacture and install than any domestic blinds. The tolerances are far less and we have to consider your exact conservatory, their much higher use and the complex shapes often involved. Unlike domestic blinds, we have to know how all the blinds look when next to each other – domestic blinds are made as one-off blinds that have no relationship to any other window.

Components: Genuine conservatory blinds are made from components and fabrics that have to survive in the rigours of a conservatory. The costs of technology that provide UV stabilisation, anti-oxidants, anti-static treatments and so on, make the raw materials many times more expensive than a normal domestic blind.

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO MEASURE AND PREPARE A QUOTATION?

The amount of time it takes to quote for conservatory blinds depends on the complexity of the conservatory and the extent of advice you require. The absolute minimum time to establish what blinds you require, take measurements and prepare a quotation would be 30 minutes.

We allow approximately 1 to 1½ hours for a “normal quotation”, although it can take longer if you require numerous alternative quotations and in-depth technical advice. We will never stay longer than necessary, and we are happy to leave you with a quote and let you think about it rather than staying for too long to pressure you in to buying.

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I MAKE AN ENQUIRY?

When you make an enquiry with Conservatory Blinds Limited you will not be plagued by sales calls, or made to feel awkward if you decide against buying blinds. We are NOT a Direct Sales Company.

We don’t have a call centre or telesales staff either. In fact, because we are family owned and run company, you will probably always speak to the same person.

If you ask us to call you back in a week’s time, you can be sure that we will call you in a week’s time and that no-one else will call you before then.

Depending on whether you telephone us or enquire via the web site, we normally ask you some basic questions about your requirements and your conservatory so that we know what your expectations may be and which brochure and/or technical information to provide.

If you have requested a brochure via the web site we will contact you to ask the same questions so that we know what information to send. We will also follow up your enquiry to ensure that you have received your brochure, as well as to find out whether we can assist you further.

If you have requested a quotation, your local salesperson will call you back to arrange an appointment (normally within 24-48 hours). At appointment we will need to ask you some more detailed questions to establish whether you have any firm requirements or what advice you may need in respect of different blind types, ranges, fabrics, layouts, etc.

If you remain unsure which specification would be most suitable for you then we can measure and price for varying options. Nearly all quotations can be prepared on the day of your appointment and provided to you in writing before we leave. Complex quotations with numerous options may be emailed or posted to you following your appointment.

When you make an enquiry with Conservatory Blinds Limited you will not be plagued by sales calls or made to feel awkward if you decide against buying blinds.

CAN YOU QUOTE FOR BLINDS WITHOUT VISITING ME?

Yes, if you can provide us with sufficient information so that we can establish a specification for a quotation then we are happy to assist, but we would always do so subject to survey.

Our Price Guides offer a fair representation of the costs involved and range of prices possible when buying conservatory blinds (from us or any other company).

Please be extremely cautious when choosing blinds (or a blind company) purely based on price without ever actually seeing real-life blinds and just basing your decision on pictures and a fabric sample. The differences between specifications are huge and often concealed so that you are not comparing even remotely similar things.

In order to provide you with an accurate quotation you would need to provide us with the following information:

  • Type of blinds, blind range and specific fabric
  • Exact blind sizes (to the nearest cm) for each blind
  • Specify any shaped blinds (with over all shaped dimensions)
  • Total quantity of blinds for roof and/or sides
  • Approx. angle(s) of the conservatory roof and height of the ridge
  • Method of operation (manual, remote control, cord-tensioned etc.)
  • Conservatory type and construction
  • Images of window beads, rafters, roof boss, tie bars and ridge detail

If you are considering this course of action because you are concerned about a salesperson visiting you, then we can only assure you that we do NOT pressure-sell and will not waste your time (or ours) by sitting in your home for hours on end.

Read our customer reviews to see that we are completely different kind of company.

WHY CAN'T YOU JUST PUBLISH YOUR PRICES?

It would be impossible to publish our entire price list, as it’s far too complex to be of any use, but we do provide lots of helpful price guides.

There are a wide range of prices on this web site providing accurate estimates for all of the varying blind specifications in typical conservatories, but these have been based on criteria that we have set, so they are relatively easy to calculate.

Our full price list now runs to well over 100,000 different costs which can be applied and added together in different ways to reflect the nature of any proposed installation irrespective of how it may vary.

Pricing made-to-measure conservatory blinds when there are so many blind types, ranges, fabrics and fitting options is very difficult without experience and is impossible to simplify in any meaningful way.

In preparing our Price Guides we have applied them to “theoretical” conservatories. We have ignored all of the variables that can occur and avoided the very cheapest and most expensive options (which are least likely).

However this still means that the Price Guides vary by as much as 50% for the same blind type and 100% from the lowest to the highest prices. Nevertheless, if we created a catalogue of prices the biggest problem would be that without any professional advice (based on knowing your requirements and your conservatory) there would be a very high risk of selecting unsuitable blinds, fabrics, layouts and installation – especially if selecting them purely based on price.

Conservatory blinds are not like designing a new kitchen where you have fixed-size units which can then have options added to them. With conservatory blinds you need advice from someone who knows the “do’s and don’ts” and whom you can trust to offer you advice based on what’s best, as opposed to someone who is purely interested in “getting your order” irrespective of whether it will be suitable or even if you will be happy.

It is better not to buy any blinds at all, rather than wasting your money with completely inadequate and poor-fitting blinds just because they are cheaper.

DO YOU OFFER DISCOUNTS FOR CASH OR FOR PAYING BY FINANCE?

No. We believe that it is illegal to offer discounts for cash, or on condition that you sign up to a high-interest bearing credit agreement.

We know that one Direct Sales company in particular pushes people into buying blinds using high interest credit in return for a “discount”, as long as they make 6 monthly repayments, but this has resulted in complaints to the FSA.

Hopefully you will find that our prices are already very reasonable without our having to resort to this kind of chicanery.

IS THERE A SURCHARGE FOR CREDIT CARD PAYMENTS?

No, we do not charge extra for credit card payments as we believe this to be the most secure method of payment for our customers. When paying by credit card (or any other form of credit), you are protected by your card issuer.

These fees were frequently used by the various direct sales companies; however as of the 13th January 2018 it is now illegal for a company to charge additional fees when a customer uses a particular credit or debit card. If you find any companies still trying to charge you extra for using a particular type of card, they are now in breach of the law.

No matter what you are purchasing, you should always question why a supplier does not accept credit cards, as they are the safest way to pay for large purchases.

WHY DON'T YOU HAVE PRICES BASED ON THE CONSERVATORY FLOOR AREA?

Obviously the floor area of a conservatory bears no relationship to the shape or size of the roof, nor the cost of conservatory blinds. Your quotation will often be far higher or lower than it would end up being once a proper survey has been carried out.

Anyone using this method of “pricing” is simply an online retailer that is subcontracting the whole process to a third party and not making or fitting the blinds themselves. These blinds are well known and offer the very cheapest form of shading possible.

Some web sites offer a “supply & fit service” where the price is based on the floor area. They do this because they all use the same subcontract service for Energy Saver pleated blinds, so do not actually make or fit their own blinds, as they seem to claim.

This kind of pricing was adopted by these subcontractors because it was easy for someone to measure, but it is obviously highly inaccurate and does not in any way represent the roof blinds, any technical details in your conservatory, or your specific requirements.

Although we don’t use this particular pricing method, we do offer the same budget blinds at realistic prices, fitted by our own employed staff, and with the same 12 month guarantee (check the small print if someone else has led you to believe it to be a 5 year guarantee).

As we manufacture all of our own blinds, we can offer you a greater choice by providing advice and quotations for alternative blind ranges.

IS THERE A CHEAPEST TIME OF YEAR TO BUY CONSERVATORY BLINDS?

We always offer the very biggest discounts at times of the year when we are the least busy, but conservatory blinds are not as seasonal as they may first appear.

In general terms, the very best deals will always be just before and just after Christmas, as well as towards the end of the Summer Holidays (mid-August to mid-September).

The busiest times of the year will always result in the lowest discounts being available as we are operating at full-capacity and do not need to encourage any extra work.

Having said that, our End of Batch fabrics offer unbeatable deals all year round.

Because conservatories are affected by glare and get too hot whenever it is sunny (rather than just when the ambient air temperature is high) as well as suffering from significant heat loss at night and in the cooler months, then we have virtually all year round work without too much fluctuation.

The issue of furniture and flooring fading due to UV also means that there are always people requiring purpose-designed conservatory blinds that won’t blackout their conservatory.

Nevertheless, there are some periods of the year that are less busy and we do whatever we can to encourage more orders at these times; so when are the best deals available for conservatory blinds…?

In order of the lowest prices:

December, because January is the slowest time of the year for our factory and installers, so we always offer the biggest discounts and lowest prices in December.

January is not quite as good as December because price increases always arise in January, albeit that we tend to apply the same discounts from December.

August is historically the slowest summer month for sales, so big discounts are often available for installation in September.

February can be quite busy in its own right and so discounts are moderated as we start to get much busier, but savings are still significant.

Bank Holidays/School Holidays are no longer as busy as they used to be as people view their free time very differently, so short-term offers are made for specific weekends.

In other words the lowest prices are always available when we are less busy, so if you receive a letter from us offering an extra discount then, unlike most other companies, you can rely on it being 100% genuine and relevant to immediate orders.

WHAT FACTORS AFFECT ROOF BLINDS PRICES?

The short answer is pretty much everything. In addition to the obvious issue of quantity of blinds and their width x height, the exact shape affects price, as does the exact blind range and fabric choice, plus the type of operation and fitting required.

Even blind layout significantly affects price – in other words how many blinds covering how many panes of glass. You will generally find that nearly everyone else providing roof blinds prices will do so based on a “doubled up” layout (where one blinds covers 2 or more panes of glass). This is the cheapest way of covering the glass, but beware as this voids often your conservatory roof guarantee.

Every conservatory is completely different because made to measure roof blinds are priced to the millimetre, with different specifications being required on seemingly similar conservatories, which is why we provide you with detailed alternative quotations.

WHAT FACTORS AFFECT WINDOW BLINDS PRICES?

Window blinds prices vary with quantity – there are often 20+ panes of window glass in a conservatory and so this could mean 20+ blinds if they are individually priced, or far fewer (perhaps 4 or 5) if you have large blinds covering multiple panes of glass.

The type of blind selected will also vary the price, as will the exact range (for instance there are 5 different ranges of pleated blinds).

Fabric selection also influences window blinds prices. Genuine solar reflective conservatory blind fabrics are much, much more costly than thicker domestic quality solar reflective fabrics.

The type of installation also varies the costs, if you are having them fitted. One of the reasons why Perfect Fit blinds are often so cheap is because they are DIY blinds. The huge cost saving by fitting them yourself or of using a domestic blind fitter means that they can be artificially cheap.

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