Des Moines Home and Remodeling Show

Home and Remodeling Show News

Your resource for information on this year's Home and Remodeling Show.

2017 Home & Remodeling Show

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Home & Remodeling Show 2016

Show Hours
Friday, 3/11 – 1 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Saturday, 3/12 – 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Sunday, 3/13 – 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The highest quality vendors in all aspects of home care and home improvement will be at the Iowa State Fairgrounds for the Home & Remodeling Show. Find local remodelers, builders, painters, landscapers and professionals of all kinds to provide trustworthy advice and expert help with your next home project or remodel. If you are remodeling, building or need a plan for your next home project, you can’t afford to miss the Home & Remodeling Show.

And, because admission, parking and seminars are all completely FREE, join the thousands of attendees who are ready to gain access to local resources ready to meet all your home and remodeling needs. See you at the Fairgrounds!

More information:


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Find the Experts with HBA

If you’re looking for help with your home and remodeling needs, central Iowa’s experts want to talk to you at the Home and Remodeling Show. You can learn more (and win prizes!) before the March 7-9 event by joining our scavenger hunt on Facebook. Read on for details…

Prizes:  Thanks to our generous members, we’ll draw winners March 10 for the following prizes…

  1. Kindle Fire courtesy of Digital Residence
  2. A programmable thermostat installed courtesy of Metro Heating and Cooling
  3. Iowa Energy Tickets (March 19) courtesy of Gilcrest Jewett Lumber Company
  4. Iowa Wild Hockey Tickets (March 19) courtesy of Krist Insurance
  5. Civic Center Tickets to “The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess” courtesy of KCCI
  6. Plumbing products courtesy of Ferguson
  7. $25 Gift card to Buffalo Wild Wings courtesy of Swan Creek Cabinetry
  8. $25 Gas Card courtesy of Factory Direct Appliances
  9. Clothing courtesy of Wayne Dalton and Denton Homes

How to Play:  Find your local home and remodeling experts by following the six clues leading to six different Facebook Pages.  The first clue will be posted on HBA’s Page at 9:00 a.m. March 1, 2014 and the game will end after a winner has been determined on March 6.

1)    Start by looking for the HBA Facebook page that represents the first clue. Here’s a little help: click here to begin.

2)    Upon finding the next page, you will see a congratulatory post. Comment on that post to show you have visited the page (you must “like” the page in order to comment).

3)    The next morning at 9:00 a.m. the second clue will be posted on the page directing you to the next member page, and the search begins again.

4)    Repeat until you have found all six participating pages! A total of six clues will be posted during March 1-6 at 9:00 a.m.

The scavenger hunt ends when all six clues have been solved and winners have been verified. In order to win, a fan must find and post a comment under the congratulatory post on each participating page. Winners will be selected at random from fans who commented on each participating page’s post.

Official Rules: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Contest begins at 9:00 a.m. on March 1, 2014 and ends when winners are determined on March 6, 2014. You must be 18 years of age or older and a legal U.S. Resident residing in the state of Iowa. Void where prohibited. All entries must be received by 5:00 p.m. March 6, 2014. Limit one entry per person per household. Prize winners will be selected at random and notified on March 10, 2013. For more information write to Home Builders Association of Greater Des Moines, 6751 Corporate Drive, Johnston, Iowa 50131.

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Narrowing the Field

Tips for narrowing the field of Des Moines home and remodeling contractors with a research on portfolios, references, certifications and affiliations in the industry.

  • Definitely look at pictures of completed work online. Is the company (especially its staff) capable of the type of work that you desire? How do they stand out?
  • Establish the longevity of any business and evaluate its history. Consider how this information might support your goals and prioritize your selections. During the recession many companies left the marketplace, and similarly, many new business started up.
  • Gather referrals or testimonials from friends and online. These can be helpful in establishing a short list to interview.
  • Determine the value of a design services for your home. A wide spectrum of customization exists in our local market. Research the benefits of design and planning options provided within the industry and ascertain what resonates with your family.
  • Consider reputation! Does the contractor have industry affiliations or certifications? Are they registered with the State of Iowa? Do they carry appropriate insurance? Ask business associates or Google for additional insight.
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Trends in Remodeling

It’s so popular, even royalty does it. Recently, the second in line to the British throne, Prince William, and his wife remodeled their 21-room home in Kensington Palace. Although few of us undertake renovations on such a grand scale, almost everybody eventually gets the urge to spruce up the place they call home. Local professionals in the design and remodeling business have their fingers on the pulse of what’s hot and what’s not. They are ready to guide their clients in the right direction so the end result is a more comfortable and attractive home.

One of the easiest ways to freshen your kitchen or bath is to replace your countertops and backsplashes. In the Des Moines area, granite remains the No. 1 countertop choice, says Jeff Bognar of Granite Marble & Tile Solutions in Ankeny. Granite is low maintenance, he says; resealing it periodically is an easy procedure (his company offers a lifetime resealing warranty). Dark shades have been the most popular for a while, but lighter shades are gaining favor, Bognar says.

Marble can also be beautiful as a countertop, but it is a softer material, and it should be kept dry to avoid dull spots.

As for backsplashes, glass tiles have become trendy, Bognar says. But they are expensive, and once the trend cools, the backsplash may look dated. A more practical choice is porcelain or ceramic tiles. Using different sizes, or a trim tile, can add interest without being too trendy. Tumbled marble is another good choice, Bognar says.

Is this the year your house finally gets new flooring? Consider tile that simulates wood, suggests Matt Thompson of Gilcrest/Jewett Lumber Co. The flooring has a modern look to it and is easier to care for than traditional hardwood. The cost is comparable to hardwood, and you don’t have to worry about shoes making pockmarks.

Thompson says painted kitchen cabinets have inched up on the popularity chart, although many people still prefer the more traditional look of wood. As for style, Mission-style doors with a recessed panel are my favorite, he says. They look good in many types of kitchens and are less expensive than cabinet doors with a raised panel.

Thompson’s best advice is to choose the look you love, rather than trying to keep up with trends. No matter how popular a style is, sooner or later a new look will capture the public’s imagination. For example, lighter woods were all the rage 10 years ago. Today, shoppers gravitate to either darker woods or white woodwork.

A quick way to add pizzazz to your exteriors is to replace your front door. Thompson says Gilcrest/Jewett has seen definite uptick in orders for custom front doors. Homeowners can individualize their look with features like leaded glass or exotic woods.

When it comes to floor plans, “open” has been the buzzword for some time, and the trend shows no sign of stopping. Jodi Peterman, owner of Elizabeth Erin Designs LLC in Grimes, says her clients continue to seek advice on changing a series of small, closed-off rooms into one big space, where family and guests can eat, watch TV and relax. Since everybody seems to gravitate toward the kitchen, homeowners often want to remove a wall or two, creating a single “great room.”

Using the same flooring throughout will bring unity to the room, while rugs and furniture groupings can define spaces for cooking, dining and entertaining. Formal dining rooms, often used for little more than holiday dinners, are morphing into home offices, Peterman says.


  • Don’t spoil a snazzy kitchen backsplash with outlets. Put the outlets underneath the cabinets instead.
  • Use neutral colors on wall, then add punches of color through pillows, lamps, throws, window treatments and other accessories.
  • Transform a powder room by painting the walls a deep, rich color, such as chocolate or burgundy.
  • Bring kitchen cabinets all the way to the ceiling, eliminating dusty cabinet tops.
  • Give wallpaper another chance. Papers today are much easier to remove than in the past.
  • Seek out help, even if you are redecorating project is small. You may be surprised at the time and money you save using a professional.

When it comes to colors, no one shade is king, Peterman says. Jewel colors, such as kelly green, are a popular choice, as are deep navy and “anything earthy.” And to get the most from remodeled rooms, Peterman recommends keeping everything as clutter-free as possible.

Your rooms will look more spacious, and you’ll be able to spend your time relaxing instead of dusting.

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Choosing a Builder

Selecting the person who will build or remodel your home isn’t a choice to be made lightly.

Making the right decision is important financially, of course, but it also affects your peace of mind. You should seek a positive relationship, a partnership in which you and your builder communicate well and trust each other. After all, your goal is a home you can enjoy for many years to come.

Local building experts say the best way to end up a satisfied customer is to do some prep work up front. Check with the Home Builders Association of Greater Des Moines to see if the builders you are considering are members, and be sure your builder has a contractor’s license and appropriate insurance. Ask people whose homes you like for the names of the builders they used, but keep in mind that some builders specialize in only one type of house. If you taste runs to contemporary, for example, the person who built your neighbor’s Colonial might not be a good fit.

Next, check out other examples of the builder’s work. Tim VanderPloeg, who owns a design and drafting business in Des Moines, says reputable builders should be happy to give you the names and addresses of former clients. After you take a look at those homes, follow up by asking the homeowners how they would rate their building experience.

You’ll want to get in estimate of the cost of your project, and here VanderPloeg warns, “Don’t do too much shopping around.” It takes a lot of time for builders to prepare detailed cost estimates, and if they see they are just one of many builders being surveyed, they’ll be less likely to put in the time it takes to get an accurate estimate.

As in most relationships, good communication is key, VanderPloeg says. Don’t expect your builder to read your mind. If you yearn for a certain level of elegance (crown modeling, designer drawer pulls, expensive countertop material), put your wish in writing before the first shovel hits the dirt.

Adding “surprises” as you go along guarantees shock and disappointment when you see your final bill.

It’s best to iron out all details of payment beforehand, says Colin King, co-owner of K and V Homes. Most builders give a one-year warranty on their work, King says, Find out about the subcontractors they use, he advises, and ask about how easy it will be to makes changes along the way.

Make sure you feel comfortable discussing items that concern you during the building process, and ask your builder’s prior clients how quick the builders were responding to calls. You are establishing a relationship that could last from four to eight months, sometimes even longer, so do what you can to choose a builder you will enjoy working with.

Finally, if you have drawings, pictures and descriptions of custom features that are a must for your new home or renovation, look to see if your prospective builder has dealt with that level of customization in prior projects. Not all builders choose to work on highly customized projects, King points out. Some prefer building house “on specs” instead.

Builders, architects and designers at the HBA of Greater Des Moines want to make sure you enjoy the process of building your homes as much as you enjoy living in it once it’s finished.

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