Many Mission Viejo homes like my own are situated in such a way that sun bakes in through the largest of the windows and sliding doors, creating an oven effect that wastes energy by increasing the need for more air conditioning. Selecting the right window coverings can make a noticeable difference in utility bills. As current gasoline prices skyrocket, utility bills for Mission Viejo homes are sure to follow, so if it is time to replace window coverings, while indoor shutters may not be your first choice in design, it may be time to recall the words of 20th Century archetectural guru Louis Sullivan:
"It is the pervading law of all things organic and inorganic,
Of all things physical and metaphysical,
Of all things human and all things super-human,
Of all true manifestations of the head,
Of the heart, of the soul,
That the life is recognizable in its expression,
That form ever follows function. This is the law."
Wood Shutters are a functional addition to Mission Viejo homes in that they are able to morph from full window enclosure, to partial covering, to no covering at all, suiting a variety of times of day and occasions. It is a common misperception that other forms of window coverings are less expensive than shutters. This may be true if you don't shop around to find the highest quality for the best price. Being the ultimate bargain hunter that I am, I think I have found the biggest bang for the buck in the realm of plantation shutters for Mission Viejo homes.
Before you order custom shutters, consider what the choices are. Basically, there are three types: solid hardwood, solid-core vinyl, and aluminum-core vinyl. Aluminum-core vinyl have the benefit of being lighter; however, they have little endcaps on the edge of every blade that can come loose and may not give as rich an appearance as a solid-core product. The solid-core vinyl have the advantage of being suitable for installations where there may be a problem with water intrusion because they will not warp if they get soaked. They never need to be painted; however, they have the disadvantage of being heavier than wood and there is not usually a color choice, so your window trim may not match your shutters. Typically, they cost more, too. For my Mission Viejo home, I chose solid wood shutters.
Wood shutters in Mission Viejo homes give them a clean appearance. Drapes and heavy curtains are more likely to hold odors and can be expensive to have dry cleaned. Shutters need to be dusted and occasionally wiped down with a damp cloth to keep them looking fresh. If you have a rather pesky house cat like I do, you won't have to worry about her scratching and clawing them and biting of cords like she does with other window coverings.
Custom wood shutters come in a wide variety of colors. For the shutters in my Mission Viejo home, I have chosen a Dunn-Edwards Swiss Coffee, which is an off white for which I can easily buy matching trim paint. I like "easy," and off-white suits me because, in my Mission Viejo home, it doesn't grab attention the way bright white does. This way, other furnishings in my home can have dominance. Some people may prefer matching the shutters to their wall color. Having the choice of color can be important when buying shutters.
In shopping for shutters, I found a wide range in pricing. It was easy to find shutters for $35 per sq.ft., which is probably why many people think they can't afford them. On the other hand, I found a company that works through direct referrals and they sell high-quality shutters for as low as $13.95 per sq. ft., depending on the quantity ordered. I ordered shutters for two sets of double french doors with side windows (6 ft wide each) and two large (50-inch square) picture windows and two narrow (2-ft wide) windows and was able to get the lowest price. They have a person who comes to your home and measures, assuring the shutters will fit. Everything is done very professionally and the quality is great. You pay 50% upon placing the order, the rest is paid when they come to install them.
If you are interested in being one of my personal referrals to this custom shutter company, contact me , provide your name, address, telephone number and email address, and I will provide you with a referral coupon that you can use for setting up an appointment for a company representative to measure your windows. The company will sell shutters to owners of Mission Viejo homes, and to owners of all Orange County homes. While I cannot personally guarantee you will be satisfied, I can tell you that I have been extremely pleased with the shutters that were installed in my own Mission Viejo home.