For over a quarter of a century, Larkin Windows have been providing unrivalled products and services across the midlands and beyond from their well-appointed County Longford base. Building Ireland interrupted founder / proprietor Brendan Larkin’s busy schedule to find out more.
Established in Ballinamuck, County Longford by Brendan Larkin in 1992, Larkin Windows (t/a Larkin Aluminium) has gone from strength to strength and is now an industry-leading, customer-focused, family-run business that has evolved into a major producer, supplier and installer island-wide of aluminium and uPVC windows, doors, porches, patios and conservatories.
On site at their state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Longford, Larkin Windows have their own windows, doors and conservatories showrooms. ‘A’-rated windows and doors are available in a full range of colours and designs whilst the service has been expanded to enable Brendan and his dedicated team to provide a total solution for all requirements, whether enhancing an existing property or building a new one.
Continuous investment keeps Larkin Windows on top of their game: “We’ve recently started work on a new showroom and office space, which we’re constructing in glass to showcase our capabilities. It’s a two-storey building with a glass façade – with the offices downstairs and the showrooms upstairs.”
An unrivalled customer experience is guaranteed from first point of contact on every project to complement the exceptional product range. Free quotations and advice are provided on all products and Larkin Windows have their own in-house sales and fitting teams, offering customers complete peace of mind that they are dealing with one party from the first phone call to turning the key in their new or refurbished home or business.
“We focused on the domestic market in the early years and then expanded our service to include commercial premises,” Brendan reflects.
“Today, a lot of the work involves PVC windows for domestic projects and one-off houses and aluminium for commercial projects – hospitals, schools, etc. So it’s a wide range of project types, from one-off windows to one-off houses to large housing schemes and commercial building or office blocks.”
While traditionally Larkin Windows covered Longford and surrounding counties, they have broadened their horizons as their reputation for excellence spread on the back of steady repeat business and new clients sourced through positive referrals.
This has seen them take on more and more work in wider areas, such as Dublin for example.“We cover a broad area now – from East to West and all over the Midlands. We have quite a lot of school projects at the moment, for the School Boards and the Department of Education, and we’re also focusing on many Housing Schemes.
We have the capacity to take on housing schemes of any size – up to 200 or 300 homes. At present, we’re working on different Schemes.“Our main customers are Private Owners undertaking self builds and Property Developers. We’re doing a lot of high-end houses with large sliding doors and large glass panels. These products are all bespoke … we build the window or door or panel and then fit it on site. We can also build a wide range of conservatories from the foundation up to the roof.
”Indeed, Larkin Windows have not one but two factories on their Ballinamuck site, which is a veritable one-stop shop for all window, door and conservatory requirements.
“We work off architects’ drawings to produce the exact product that’s required but we’re not afraid to offer our advice if we feel it will result in a better outcome. We’ve often advised clients during the build, if we spot something that can be improved upon.
”Larkin’s comprehensive range of casement, flush sash, tilt & turn and French windows are complemented by an equally extensive selection of front and back doors, patio doors and French doors as well as thermally-efficient uPVC frame conservatories with the appearance of timber or aluminium.
Larkin’s EnergyPlus conservatory roof is available in a stunning range of colours from stock and is designed to perfectly match the rest of the Larkin window and door ranges.“We’re experiencing huge growth in both the domestic and commercial markets,” says Brendan.
“Housing has taken off again over the last two years and the Department of Education have listed windows and doors as a priority in their schools this year.
”Pre-recession, we were probably guilty of not travelling outside of our local area and neighbouring Counties. We have now broadened our areas and have established lasting working relationships with Architects and Property Developers who are in regular contact to ensure we are on the Tender List for upcoming works.
Everything we do is made to fit the particular building in question and we use a proven APA aluminium system.“The industry is changing quickly, with new systems coming out every year and openings and frames getting bigger, and you have to be constantly moving with the times, but the core principles are still the same.
”Looking to the future, Brendan is optimistic that further growth could be on the cards: “When the demand is there, you have to go with it and grow,” he concludes.
“There’s been a massive change for the better in the market in recent years and we’re going to move with it.
“Of course, you have to maintain the highest standards at all times and we are very much aware of this. Our Customer Service and Quality Control will remain at the forefront of the business. Ultimately, the book stops with me. I take a very strong interest in every project. I’m not hiding away in the office; I’m out on site, meeting the customers, giving advice, making sure everything is right and I intend to maintain that personal input with every job.
“On top of that, we have a core group of people here who know the business inside-out and their contribution is invaluable. You can’t beat experience and expertise.”
Phone: 043 3324047Fax: 043 3324982
Email: [email protected]
Taken from Building Ireland Magazine, October, Vol 5 No 10