Home building and remodeling industry forecast solid 2014 - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Home building and remodeling industry forecast solid for 2014


MADISON (WKOW)-- Sunday marked the third and final day of the 16th annual Madison Home Expo at the Monona Terrace Event Center.

After a rebound year in 2013, dozens of contractors, remodelers and home builders were out marketing their services to potential customers in hopes of making 2014 even better.

"There's still some hesitation out there in the market," The Gardner Company Sales Manager Travis Miller says.

That hesitation is slowly starting to fade as the national economy continues to improve and homeowners are becoming more comfortable with the idea of re-investing money into their home.

"We just got done with a very cold snap, an arctic blast that came through Wisconsin and as a result a lot of people are talking about windows," Miller says.

It's a simple project with two returns on your investment, better looking windows that add value to your home, but are also energy-efficient with the potential of saving money on your monthly utility bill.

Other popular projects include re-roofing. Remodelers say the visually-appealing project can help homeowners who are looking to put their house on the market.

"If they look at the roof and it looks like it's got some age on it, it might make it a very hard sell," Miller says.

According to the National Association of Home Builders, the numbers they saw towards the end of 2013 suggest the highest number of remodeling projects since early 2004. Housing experts believe that one of the main contributors is homeowners looking to spruce up their house before putting it on the market.

The home building industry is also expecting to have a good year. Companies like Classic Custom Homes in Waunakee are already drafting designs for customers looking to build later this year.

"It's really picking up for us right now. We're working with a lot of new design projects," designer Brandon Ripp says.

Landscapers are also getting more work with homeowners trying to make their front yards and patios more visually appealing for potential buyers. Landscapers with the Bruce Company say they're currently working on a backlog of projects from last season and are still taking calls for additional projects this year.

"The front yard is the first impression when you pull up to a house and how that looks is really important and that's what they remember," landscape architect Wayne Rayfield says.

Builders say projects range from a few hundred to ten's of thousands of dollars, but like anything you get back what you put in.

Organizers of the expo say they're still calculating their ticket sales, but say around 10,000 people attended the three day expo.

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