The New Window Dilemma
You couldn't possibly turn on the T.V. or Radio with out hearing an ad from and Window Company or a contractor offering "Lowest Price on Star Rated Windows". These ads are almost frequent as new car advertisement in Chesapeake and all of Hampton Roads.
From clients, I have heard the common tactic, probably to be expected as there are options available, of the window salesman offering more energy efficient window. As heating/cooling costs are one of the largest monthly cost in home ownership, it is very logical for a home owner to seek energy efficiency.
As noted in Al Clark's Home Action article below, window replacement may not be the absolute first thing a home owner should do. Not surprisingly, improved insulation will typically improve the energy efficiency better.
Not as flashy as new windows, but more bang for the buck.