Window Tinting Company’s
Mike Lafave brings comfort to your home
One of the most stunning aspects in any home is natural light. Large, floor-to-ceiling windows that overlook a tree-lined yard, manicured golf course, or scenic lake can provide a serene atmosphere in any room. But those same windows that let in the light can also let in heat, especially during the scorching Nebraska summers. An easy solution is to have them tinted, and Mike Lafave, owner of Window Tinting Company of Omaha, guarantees you’ll benefit from it.
He’s worked in the window tinting industry his entire career. An Omaha native, Lafave started out working for his father who originally owned the company, which provided only automotive tinting. “He said he’d hire me if I developed the flat glass side of window tinting and sold to homes and businesses, including installing everything myself, which I did,” Lafave said. “I fell in love with the company and developed great relationships with architects, designers, and glass companies.”
Six months ago his father retired, and Lafave took over as sole owner. Twenty years after he first began, Lafave now has 12 employees and offices in Omaha, Denver, Des Moines, and will be opening additional offices in Lincoln and Sioux Falls. “I attribute a lot of our success to my father giving me that opportunity to grow the company into something much bigger,” he said. This includes solar films to reduce heat, glare, and ultraviolet light fading; safety films to hold glass together in the event of breakage; and decorative films for both homes and businesses.
Window Tinting has come a long way from the dark films that often discolored or bubbled. The products that Lafave’s company uses are colorless, so they don’t change the look of the window or house, and customers can’t even tell visually there’s a tint on the windows. “You only need to tint the problematic areas of the house,” Lafave said. “And we can always come back and do other rooms later.” Film is sold and installed by the square foot and comes with a lifetime warranty.
Lafave said Window tinting is the most cost effective way to lower utility bills. Depending on the type of glass, cooling system in the home, and direction the home faces, a good rule of thumb is it can reduce heat between 50 and 80 percent and reduce 99 percent of ultraviolet light, which is the number one contributor to the fading of fabrics and hard wood floors. “Typical return on investment is usually anywhere from 24 to 60 months,” he added.
The company won the 2015 3M platinum dealer award and recently completed re-tinting all 70,000 square feet of glass on the Woodman Tower. They are currently contracted to do 14 new TD Ameritrade buildings and have worked with companies such as First National Bank, Union Pacific, and Kiewit. Lafave said once employees who work at buildings they’ve tinted are familiar with their products and experience how well they work, they often want their homes done.
“Word of mouth and relationships is what drives our business,” Lafave said. That and working with a team who are each excellent at what they do. “The number one thing I’ve learned in business over the years is to surround yourself with people who work hard and are gifted in different areas,” he said. “We’re really proud of the work we do, and are very family oriented. Not just here but with our customers too. We don’t want to simply sell a material. We want to provide a solution that works and improves your quality of life.”