A Japan Times article reports that the government’s “Eco-Point” system is raising awareness of the benefits that “reform” (renovations) can offer, thus encouraging the industry to step-up efforts to tap this new demand. One window maker even took kiosk space at a high-volume electronics retailer so that they could reach out to consumers directly. The article also suggests that prospective home buyers are starting to look more favourably at “used-homes” due to the tougher economic times. An active pre-existing home market would greatly increase demand for finishing materials in Japan as buyers would be saving on the structural side. (For the full article please see http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/nn20100401f2.html).
With all of the positive feedback about reform that I am also getting from importers in builders, I am thinking that we will need to target this market more proactively this fiscal year.