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Are plantation shutters worth the investment? How to choose the right plantation shutter installer?

More and more Australians are discovering how great plantation shutters are. They aren’t just a trend—they offer a lot of benefits that make them the perfect choice for window coverings. Here’s why:

  • Looks Great: Plantation shutters have a stylish and elegant appearance that enhances any room.
  • Easy to Clean: They are simple to keep clean with just a quick wipe or dusting.
  • Excellent Privacy: You can easily adjust the slats for the level of privacy you want.
  • Good Insulation: They help keep your home warm in the winter and cool in the summer.
  • Great Light Control: You can adjust the slats to let in as much or as little light as you want.
  • Affordable: They’re more budget-friendly than you might think.
  • Adds Value: Plantation shutters can increase the value of your home.

Overall, plantation shutters offer a great combination of style, function, and value.

What are plantation shutters?

Plantation shutters are a type of window covering typically made of wide louvres (slats) that are mounted within a solid frame. They are called “plantation shutters” because they were originally used in the large plantation homes in the American South.

Why does anyone want to install plantation shutters?

People choose to install plantation shutters for various reasons, including:

  1. Light Control: The adjustable louvres allow for precise control over the amount of natural light entering a room, which can help create the desired ambience and protect furniture and flooring from UV damage.
  2. Privacy: Plantation shutters can be adjusted to block the view from outside while still allowing light to filter in, providing privacy without sacrificing natural light.
  3. Energy Efficiency: The solid construction and ability to fully close plantation shutters help insulate windows, reducing heat loss in winter and heat gain in summer. This can lead to lower energy bills.
  4. Aesthetic Appeal: These shutters add a classic, elegant look to a home. They can enhance the overall design and increase the property’s curb appeal and resale value.
  5. Durability: Plantation shutters are often made from high-quality materials like wood or composite, making them a long-lasting window treatment option that can withstand daily use.
  6. Easy Maintenance: Compared to fabric window treatments, plantation shutters are easier to clean and maintain. Regular dusting and occasional wiping are usually sufficient to keep them looking good.
  7. Customization: They can be custom-fitted to any window size and shape, including arches, bay windows, and other unique designs, providing a tailored and polished look.
  8. Noise Reduction: The solid structure of plantation shutters can help reduce outside noise, creating a quieter and more peaceful indoor environment.

Overall, plantation shutters offer a combination of functionality, style, and practicality that makes them a popular choice for many homeowners.

What is the life expectancy of plantation shutters?

The life expectancy of plantation shutters depends on several factors, including the material they are made from, the quality of the shutters, and how well they are maintained. Here’s a general overview:

  1. Material:
    • Wood: High-quality wooden plantation shutters can last 20 to 30 years or more with proper care and no pests like termites. They may need periodic refinishing or repainting to maintain their appearance.
    • Composite/Faux Wood: These shutters are made from engineered wood or a blend of wood and synthetic materials. They are often more resistant to moisture and can last 20 years or more.
    • Vinyl/PVC: Vinyl shutters are highly durable and resistant to moisture and humidity, making them ideal for bathrooms and kitchens. They can last 20 to 30 years or longer with minimal maintenance.
  2. Quality: Higher-quality shutters, regardless of material, tend to have a longer lifespan due to better construction and materials.
  3. Maintenance: Regular cleaning and occasional maintenance, such as tightening screws and ensuring proper operation of the louvres, can extend the life of plantation shutters. Avoiding harsh chemicals and excessive moisture can also help preserve their condition.
  4. Environmental Factors: Exposure to extreme temperatures, humidity, and direct sunlight can affect the longevity of plantation shutters. For example, wood shutters may warp or crack in high humidity, while vinyl shutters may fade over time if exposed to intense sunlight.

In summary, with proper care and maintenance, plantation shutters can last anywhere from 20 to 30 years or even longer, depending on the material and quality.

Modern bed with comfortable mattress and soft pillows located near bedside table in spacious bedroom

When should you not use plantation shutters?

While plantation shutters are a versatile and stylish window treatment, there are certain situations where they might not be the best choice:

  1. Limited Space: If you have limited space around your windows or very narrow window frames, plantation shutters might not fit well or could look too bulky.
  2. Frequent Adjustments: If you prefer to frequently adjust your window coverings to control light and privacy, plantation shutters might be less convenient than options like curtains or blinds, which can be adjusted more quickly and easily.
  3. Budget Constraints: Plantation shutters can be more expensive than other window treatment options, such as blinds or curtains. If you are on a tight budget, they might not be the most cost-effective choice.
  4. Historic or Antique Homes: In homes with a specific historic or antique style, plantation shutters might not match the existing decor or architectural details. In such cases, more period-appropriate window treatments might be better.
  5. Modern Minimalist Design: In homes with a very modern or minimalist design, the classic look of plantation shutters might not fit well with the overall aesthetic.
  6. Large Windows or Sliding Glass Doors: For very large windows or sliding glass doors, plantation shutters can be cumbersome and may not provide the best functionality or look. Alternatives like vertical blinds or drapes might be more suitable.
  7. Moist Environments: While composite and vinyl shutters are suitable for humid environments, wooden plantation shutters might not be the best choice for areas with high moisture, such as bathrooms or kitchens, as they can warp or crack over time.
  8. Outside View: If you have a window with a particularly beautiful view, plantation shutters can obstruct some of it even when the louvres are fully open. You might prefer a window treatment that can be fully drawn to the side.
  9. Installation Constraints: If your window frames or walls are not strong enough to support the weight of plantation shutters, or if you rent and cannot make permanent changes to the property, you might need to consider alternative window treatments.

Are plantation shutters worth the investment?

Plantation shutters can offer up to a 75% return on investment, meaning you can get a good chunk of your money back when you sell your home. This high return isn’t guaranteed, but plantation shutters do add value in a few important ways:

  1. Increased Buyer Appeal:
    • Well-Made Shutters Attract Buyers: Custom, high-quality plantation shutters can make your home more appealing to buyers. They save the new owner from spending money on window treatments and offer privacy and protection right from the start. This can help your home sell faster and look better during showings.
    • Avoid Poorly Done Shutters: If shutters are outdated or poorly made, they can actually hurt your home’s appeal. Just like you might judge a house by its broken blinds, buyers might view a home with bad shutters as poorly maintained.

How to Design Window Treatments for Your Home

Focus on Enhancing Curb Appeal:

  • Subtle Yet Attractive: Window treatments shouldn’t be the main feature of the home but should enhance it. Aim for light colours and let as much natural light in as possible to highlight the best features of your home.
  • Go for White Shutters with Large Slats: White plantation shutters with large slats are a popular choice in Florida. They look clean and let in plenty of light, which can attract buyers.
  • Professional Installation: Make sure you work with a professional to get custom shutters that fit your windows perfectly. Well-made shutters will look like a natural part of your home rather than an afterthought.

By focusing on these aspects, you can make the most of your investment in plantation shutters and help your home stand out to potential buyers.

a window with shutters on the outside and an office desk in the middle part of the room is empty

How to choose the right plantation shutter installer?

If you want to install plantation shutters for your window, choosing the right plantation shutter installer is important to ensure you get high-quality results and a smooth experience. Here are some simple steps and tips to help you make the best choice:

1. Check Their Experience

  • Experience Matters: Look for an installer with several years of experience in fitting plantation shutters. Experienced installers are more likely to handle challenges effectively and deliver professional results.
  • Ask for Examples: Request to see photos of their previous work or ask for references from past customers.

2. Read Reviews and Testimonials

  • Online Reviews: Check reviews on websites like Google, Yelp, or Facebook to see what previous customers have said about their service.
  • Ask for Recommendations: Ask friends, family, or neighbours if they know a good shutter installer.

3. Verify Their Credentials

  • Licensing and Insurance: Ensure the installer is properly licensed and insured. This protects you in case of accidents or issues during the installation process.
  • Certifications: Look for certifications from shutter manufacturers or industry organizations.

4. Compare Quotes

  • Get Multiple Quotes: Contact a few different installers to get quotes. Make sure the quotes include all costs, such as materials, labour, and any additional fees.
  • Beware of Low Prices: If one quote is significantly lower than others, it might be a sign of poor quality or hidden costs.

5. Check for a Warranty

  • Ask About Warranties: A good installer should offer a warranty on their workmanship in addition to any product warranties from the manufacturer.
  • Read the Fine Print: Understand what the warranty covers and how long it lasts.

6. Assess Their Customer Service

  • Communication: Choose an installer who is responsive, answers your questions, and listens to your needs.
  • Professionalism: Look for someone who is courteous, punctual, and professional.

7. Discuss Installation Details

  • Process and Timeline: Ask about the installation process and how long it will take. Ensure they can work within your schedule.
  • Custom Solutions: Make sure they can handle custom designs and special requirements for your windows.

8. Evaluate Their Product Selection

  • Range of Products: Check that they offer a variety of plantation shutters, including different materials, colours, and styles, so you can find the best fit for your home.
  • Quality of Products: Ensure they use high-quality materials from reputable manufacturers.

Questions to Ask Potential Installers

  • How long have you been installing plantation shutters?
  • Can you provide references or examples of your past work?
  • Are you licensed and insured?
  • What does your quote include?
  • What warranties do you offer on your work and the products?
  • What is your process for installation, and how long will it take?
  • Do you offer custom designs for unique window shapes?


Picking the right plantation shutter installer means checking out their experience, reading reviews, making sure they have the right credentials, comparing quotes, and ensuring they offer great customer service. By doing these things, you can find an installer who will do a great job and help you get the best plantation shutters for your home.

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