Vinyl Windows and Siding builds sterling reputation from within
Christy Arboscello Macomb Daily Special Writer
A Warren window business is relying on the reputation it's
earned for shutting out the Michigan cold over the past four
decades in effort to endure today's harsh economic climate.
Vinyl Windows and Siding Inc. has been a staple on Ryan Road,
south of 12 Mile Road, since settling in its 4,500-square-foot
warehouse and showroom in 1979. Eight years prior to that,
company president and founder Gary Gouin, 60, of Shelby Township,
worked out of his homes in Hazel Park and Warren.
has been the toughest year in the business's history. Just
a few years ago, about 400 windows were sold a week compared
with roughly 150 sold per week now, Gouin said.
a small company, not a large company. My family works for
me. We're down right now, as with everybody else," he
said. "The only thing that's keeping me going is past
customers' referrals and recommendations, which probably is
about 90 percent of my business."
Vinyl Windows and Siding encourages customers to visit the
Business Bureau, where the company's rating has been an
A-plus - the highest possible - since May 2007. The company
also boasts that, unlike some large retail stores, all the
installations are done by in-house employees, not subcontractors.
are currently seven crews of three that install windows, roofs
and siding. One of the installers is Gouin's stepson, Dennis,
while the businessman's wife, Judith, keeps the books and
his son, Gary Jr., is apprenticing under his father to eventually
take over the company.
Township resident Debbie LoPiccolo, 51, has been a loyal customer
of Custom Vinyl Windows and Siding for years. When she and
her husband moved into a Warren house after their wedding
25 years ago, they soon discovered the rickety windows were
so drafty the cold breeze would sweep through each room. The
couple decided to use the money from their wedding to replace
windows throughout the house and get new screen doors.
never had anything like them. My parents have bought them.
My husband's parents have bought from there. There is no comparison,"
LoPiccolo said, noting the windows are durable, easy to clean
and energy efficient.
the couple bought their house in Macomb Township and found
the existing windows unacceptable. So, this time, they decided
to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary with new windows
from Custom Vinyl Windows and Siding instead of going on vacation
to a tropical destination like Hawaii.
the next 25 years," she joked of the delayed trip.
said he was inspired to start his window and siding business
nearly 40 years ago by his late father, Eugene, a subcontractor
for different companies who taught his son home improvements
from an early age. When Gouin was 18, he got a builder's license
and at 22, he founded his company.
"Raising eight children, he always told me that he would
help me get a business going on my own so I didn't have to
work for no one else," he said. His 91-year-old father
died a year ago after seeing the company flourish for decades.
"He was pretty proud."