How I Saved $800 Off My Budget Blinds Estimate with DIY Window Treatments

I saved $800 off my Budget Blinds estimate by installing my own window treatments, so consider installing window blinds by yourself before you hire somebody else to do it and pay too much money.

Since purchasing my home several years ago, I’ve slowly updated my window treatments from room to room by myself.

I recently installed new front windows to replace the old rotten wood of the previous ones, for which I used my NFL Extra Points Card to save $400 with a statement credit bonus.

Even though I installed my other window blinds on my own, I decided to get an estimate from Budget Blinds for my new windows, just to consider their product line and to see if it was worth while to have professional installers do the job for me.

Although I did like their cellular shades, the estimate came out to $1,006.47 for only 3 blinds, so I decided to stick to doing it on my own, and saved more than $800.

My Budget Blinds Estimate

I basically have a large living room window block that consists of 2 smaller windows on the outside with 1 larger window in the middle.

The smaller outside windows are 23 inches wide by 50 inches tall and the bigger window in the middle is 50 inches wide by 50 inches tall.

I selected 3/4 inch black-out cellular shades with the top-down/bottom-up feature.

The estimate for my 2 smaller shades was $255 each.

The estimate for my 1 larger shade was $395.

The installation fee is only $49, so that’s actually pretty good.

However, the total costs for blinds and installation came out to $954, and with $52.47 for taxes, that’s a grand total of $1,006.47.

My DIY Blinds from JCPenney

I’ve been getting my other blinds from JCPenney and installing them myself, so I decided to see what type of pricing I could get if I went with them again for my new blinds.

One thing about purchasing blinds from JCPenney is that you can either buy select preset sizes that they already have available, or you can purchase custom size blinds that they customize to fit your specific measurements.

The main difference as far as the customer is concerned is that preset sizes are much cheaper than ordering the custom sizes, so if they have preset sizes that fit your windows, you’re better off.

I’ve been lucky enough that all of my previous window sizes have matched their available preset sizes as far as the width goes, although I’ve had to live with window shades being a little longer than the actual window height, which means they bunch up slightly when they’re fully open.

It’s not too big of a sacrifice for me, but this may bother some perfectionists out there who want the exact size for their window treatments.

Luckily, with my new windows, I was able to find workable sizes that allowed me to purchase the preset options, so I also saved more money on my purchase than if I would have had to go with custom sizes.

My compromise was that the window blinds are 64 inches in height, and the window is only 50 inches in height, but this really doesn’t make a huge difference in how the window blind sits either way.

With that being said, I was able to get my 2 smaller window blinds for $40 each and my 1 larger window blind for $80, plus free shipping was including from, but I did also pay taxes obviously.

So the total costs of my window blinds from JCPenney was $160 plus taxes, which is still more than $800 in savings from my $1,006.47 Budget Blinds estimate.

It’s important to note that although my window blinds from JCPenney do have the top-down/bottom-up feature, they are not made from the same black-out material that was included in my estimate from Budget Blinds, as JCP did not have a combination of black-out material with the top-down/bottom-up feature.

Of course, the big difference is that I had to install the window blinds myself, but I’d pay myself $800 to install 3 window blinds any day.

Costs of DIY Window Treatment Installation

The first thing you have to consider in a DIY project, besides the money, is the time it will take you to complete the project.

A professional can probably install 3 window blinds in less than an hour from the time they ring your doorbell to the time they leave, but it could take you several hours to do, since you don’t necessarily have much practice or prior experience.

Another big factor is whether you have the necessary tools.

The biggest item you need to install window treatments is a power screwdriver/drill, which costs about $100, but prices vary greatly.

Sure, you could possibly use a regular screwdriver if you’re a glutton for shoulder pain, but you’ll most likely need a power screwdriver to do a good job.

Besides that, you’ll need just a little bit of muscle, as it really can be a workout to drive screws upward into the top of the window frame (depending on the type of installation), even with a power tool.

I’m not a DIY junkie or anything like that, so if I managed to do it, you probably can too, and it will save you a lot of money.

JCPenney actually offers installation services as well, although I believe they are only for the custom blind sizes where you actually have somebody come to your house to take measurements first and give you an estimate.

I considered inquiring if Budget Blinds would just install blinds for the $49 fee, regardless of where you purchased them, but I doubt it, although I’m sure you could find a local service that would do it for you for a decent price.

It’s definitely worth considering installing your window blinds on your own to save a lot of money.


  1. Brenda Procell says

    Do you REALLY believe that only difference between Budget Blinds custom shades and stock shades is the installation????
    You said yourself it was a different fabric, blackout was not available nor was top down bottom up. I guarantee you that they are made of the CHEAPEST fabric and components the manufacturer could get. There is NO comparison in quality of the products. Don’t you KNOW that you GET what you PAY for?
    That is like saying the only difference between a Mercedes Benz and
    A Kia is the color or body style!!!!
    Of course if your only concern is covering the windows with the cheapest thing you can find then by all means buy stock shades and do it yourself. If you want quantity, fashion and shades that actually FIT your window (I.e. Don’t look like you did them yourself) by all means your way is the way to go.

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