Homebuilders, granite countertop experts and window companies were putting the final touches on their booths Thursday for the Springfield Area Home Builders 2010 Home Expo. Many were optimistic that 2010 will be the year that homebuilders see a rebound.
Homebuilders, granite countertop experts and window companies were putting the final touches on their booths Thursday for the Springfield Area Home Builders 2010 Home Expo.
Many, including Jon Reynolds, president of the Springfield Area Home Builders Association, were optimistic that 2010 will be the year that homebuilders see a rebound.
Already, Reynolds’ company, Homeway Homes, has four projects slated for 2010. This time last year, it had none.
“I think we’ve drug along the bottom long enough. We are starting to see a slight recovery,” Reynolds said.
The expo, being held at the Orr building at the Illinois State Fairgrounds, began Friday and runs through Sunday. Hours are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday.
At the show are 90 vendors who represent companies that sell everything from kitchen cabinets, gutters, windows, and flooring to home entertainment systems. There are also homebuilders, banks, heating and cooling companies and other contractors.
“All of our booths are sold out,” Reynolds said. “We have a waiting list back at the office. There were 27 other people who wanted to be in the show, but we didn’t have room.”
Reynolds hopes the number of vendors is another sign that 2010 will be a good year.
At 59, Reynolds said he has seen a lot of downturns, and when they end, there is usually a pent-up demand for new housing.
“That’s people who wanted to be in the market, but were sitting on the side,” Reynolds said.
Fiore Belmonte, general manager of Prairie Insulation and a member of the board of directors for the home builders association, is also optimistic.
“We see a lot of builders who are planning to build some things as soon as the weather allows. It’s been really wet this winter, so they are getting a slow start,” Belmonte said. “But everybody I talked to is really enthusiastic.”
Belmonte added that he even knows of builders who are planning to put up “spec” houses this spring. That means they are building houses before they have buyers.
“Last year, they weren’t saying that this time of year,” Belmonte said.
About 4,500 people visited the home show last year. The number probably would have been higher, but there was a winter storm during part of the show, said Kim Young Chair of the event.
John Reynolds can be reached at (217) 788-1524 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Want to Go?
What: Springfield Area Home Builders 2010 Home Expo
Where: Orr Building at the Illinois State Fairgrounds
When: Friday, 4 to 8 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Admission: $6 for adults, children 12 and under free
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act extends several consumer tax incentives for home improvement projects that improve energy efficiency.
People who purchase and install specific products, such as energy-efficient windows, insulation, doors, roofs, and heating and cooling equipment in existing homes can receive a tax credit for 30 percent of the cost, up to $1,500, for improvements "placed in service" from Jan. 1, 2009, through Dec. 31, 2010.
People who install solar energy systems (including solar water heating and solar electric systems), small wind systems, geothermal heat pumps, and residential fuel cell and microturbine systems can receive 30 percent tax credits for systems placed in service before Dec. 31, 2016.
For more information, go to www.energy.gov/taxbreaks.htm.
Another home show on the horizon
People in the Springfield area will soon have another home show to attend. The Greater Springfield Home and Builders Show is scheduled for March 5-7 at the Prairie Capital Convention Center.
Hours will be 5 to 9 p.m. March 5, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. March 6 and noon to 5 p.m. March 7.
For more information, go to the convention center’s Website at www.springfieldpccc.com.