US Market Update

Posted by Dave Farley
February 18th, 2013

A few comments, suggestions, and ideas that may be of interest…

A few weeks back, BC Wood and a contingent of eight member companies travelled to Las Vegas to participate at the International Builders Show (IBS), an annual event where tens of thousands of suppliers, distributors, and builders convene to examine new innovations in home building materials, appliances, fixtures, and technologies.

The mood at this years’ event was optimistic, as construction of single family homes climbed 18% in December from the previous year. When measured year-to-year, home construction in the US is projected to be 23% higher than in 2011, which was a record low year. Strong housing starts along with pent up consumer demand created an air of renewed confidence at this year’s IBS.

IBS also sets the standard for manufacturers to unveil the latest in new and innovative construction products. Kohler, for example, introduced a Bluetooth enabled shower head that can instantly stream your music collection from your cell phone or tablet. Innovative wood products included stunning curved glass door systems from Nana Wall and Caoba door that take advantage of the Eclipse track system which allows the doors to be folded away allowing for large unobstructed openings of up to 20 feet.

The BC contingent, not to be overshadowed by their competitors, did an excellent job of showcasing their wares. Kettle Valley Millwork partnered with Norelco cabinets in the design and construction of a beautiful booth exhibiting their world-class cabinet and architectural millwork capabilities. One showstopper was Norelco’s “gun slinger” kitchen which featured a solid mesquite wood counter which was supported by 3 hand carved six shooter guns. Attendees were drawn to the unique look of the kitchen and at one point had a line up of 10 people to get into the booth.

Participating BC Wood members commented on the high quality leads that were created at the event. BC Wood member Canadian Timberframes Ltd. felt that they got over a 100 solid leads from builders and architects from across the United States and South America. All things considered, the 2013 IBS builders show was a barometer for showing that the US economy is improving and that the residential construction sector across the US is back on the right track. Initial optimism was abundant and here is hoping that this attitude now becomes the norm. For more information on the IBS show or the US market, please contact me at dfarley@bcwood.com

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