A new season brings renewal, not only in looks, color and temperature, but at home. Changes indoors and out can make a difference not only for fall, but all year round.
The third annual Home Improvement & Outdoor Living Show, by the Professional Remodelers Council of the Horry Georgetown Home Builders Association, opens Friday for three days through Sunday at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center.
Anyone looking for ideas or inspiration to change or add something to an abode has more than 200 vendors on site to discuss possibilities.
Eddie Friend, the president and chairman of the remodelers council, said the Conway-based association, which puts on its Home Show every winter, has its 34th edition planned for early 2014 ( www.mbhomeshow.com), and that this autumn show is taking root as an annual event.
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With a schedule of seminars and special guests, visitors have something new every hour to check out.
“It’s fantastic,” Friend said.
Question | Is this show, at the start of autumn here in the Southeast, an even bigger motivator and excitement builder than a spring-themed home show in the middle of winter up north, say in Ontario or Ohio?
Answer | Yes, I would think so, especially with the way that this is being done with the Farmers’ Marketplace that we’re having this time, and the cooking demos and the demos for different things that you can do for gardening areas. It has a lot of things that are not just for remodeling, but for sprucing up your home and getting ready for fall.
Q. | With home improvement and remodeling, what trends have emerged – and what has changed – in the industry through the years?
A. | What we’ve seen ... and kind of a reason behind starting this show a few years ago is the remodeling market has grown and its share of the total market. People are staying in the homes they’ve had, and people are looking to renew their kitchens or bathrooms, or for additions. ... A lot of the moves we’ve seen in the past few years has been focused on that outdoor space.
During the summer ... with fire pits, pergolas and pools ... we’ve seen a lot more people kind of making their outdoor area kind of their oasis and place to come home to and relax and unwind in. That’s one of the beautiful things and best parts about going into the fall: We get a little bit colder, and it’s still nice out, with hardly any humidity. It’s just beautiful outside.
Q. | In this area, how does the continued influx of retirees and other people relocating from colder climes keep the home improvement and construction field from never catching its breath?
A. | That’s one of the nice things of our area; you don’t see that work slowdown. We’re able to continue pouring concrete most of the year. Of course, one thing we’ve seen the last few years, people are buying homes discounted one way or another and fixing those up, because of the deals they can get on existing properties.
And people are so happy to be away from those horrible winters, and they want to do something with those outdoor spaces that have – maybe taking existing porches and making it nicer with tiles and screened rooms, or enlarging those porches.
A lot of what we see are people wanting to open up their space that is the transition from inside to outside, and trying to make that more seamless ... and putting in ... sliding and stacking doors. So you get this large opening that is 9 to 12 feet wide and 8 feet tall that is a combination, kind of making you feel like the indoors and outdoors are all one space.
Q. | With the long summer and long shoulder seasons of spring and fall among life’s perks of living here, how has gardening grown to be more of an almost year-round activity?
A. | That’s one of the things that’s great, especially with this particular show, where we have workshops specially tailored to what you can be planting right now, instead of getting to the end of the growing season and the garden going dormant. ... If you’ve been used to having one growing season, now you can have two, or possibly three, seasons.
Q. | What other fringe benefits await visitors to this autumn expo?
A. | We’ll have the pumpkin-carving demo ... and put all those pumpkins out on display. You have the workshops for quiches and soups, as well as how to throw a sophisticated dinner party. ... One of the very nicest things about the show, with more than 200 exhibitors ... you get face-to-face, one-on-one time with people without having to make a special appointment.