The Digital Magazine of the Fairfield County HBRA JANUARY 2017 UPCOMING February 1, 2017 General Membership Meeting March 1, 2017 General Membership Meeting March 14, 2017 Winter Trade Showcase (Free Builder Event) March 30-31, 2017 OSHA10 Construction FEATURED International Builders’ Show Luxury Home Tour Member News OSHA 10 Winter Trade Showcase

Building Relationships That Last. Propane and Natural Gas Products! • We Plan It • We Install It • We Fill It • We Service It With over 400,000 gallons of storage, HOCON GAS has a reputation for delivering propane energy and industry expertise for more than 65 years! PROPANE SERVICES RESIDENTIAL • Cooking • Fireplaces • Generators • Grills • Heat • Hot Water • Pools • Tanks CUSTOMER SERVICE • Appliances • Installation • Propane Delivery • Expert Services PETE “Propane Pete” BATTAGLIO Senior Regional Manager, New Business Development Hocon Gas, Inc. • 6 Armstrong Rd., Shelton, CT 06484 Shelton: 203.925.0600 • Fax: 203.944.0300 Cell: 203.343.2199 • Email: pbattaglio@hocongas.com NORWALK 33 Rockland Rd. (800) 801-3835 (203) 853-1500 WATERBURY 20 Railroad Hill St. (800) 992-2242 (203) 754-7601 www.hocongas.com GUILFORD 736 Boston Post Rd. (877) 906-2500 (203) 458-2790 DANBURY 86 Payne Rd. (888) 977-6726 (203) 744-4000 TORRINGTON 2407 Winsted Rd. (888) 744-8686 (860) 626-0900 © Copyright Hocon • HOD#726-30 INDUSTRIAL DIVISION • Industrial Gases • Safety Products • Temporary Heat • Welding Supplies

HBRA VIP CIRCLE 2016-17 OFFICERS President Chris Steiner Steiner, Inc. Sr. Vice-President Anthony DeRosa DeRosa Builders Vice-President Kim DiMatteo DiMatteo Group Secretary/Treasurer Michael Church William Pitt Sotheby's Immediate Past President Peter Gaboriault Bear Paw Builders Peter Battaglio Hocon Gas Max Bender Bender Supply Steve Berko Four Square Build & Design Ken DeLeo Doherty & DeLeo John Hertz Hertz Construction 2016-17 DIRECTORS Brian Kurtz Interstate Lumber Rob Michaud The Michaud Group Steven Roth Elevator Service Company Alex Shook Pella Commercial Michael Wood Wood Builders for over 60 years LIFE DIRECTORS Joanne Carroll JMC Resources Jerry Effren The Greyrock Companies Gary Fanali City Carting Peter Fusaro Preferred Builders Maureen Hanley United Bank Andrew La Sala Jr. Cannondale Building & Design Michael Palumbo ERI Building & Design Nick Yanicelli Susquehanna Enterprises MEDIA SPONSOR Thank you to the following VIP Associate Members for their support in 2017. Due to their generosity the Association greatly benefits - from developing new events and educational opportunities for the membership, to keeping our lights on! JANUARY 2017 | HBRA of Fairfield County | 3 gas

IN THIS ISSUE Board of Directors VIP Circle 5 IBS 2017 10 Luxury Home Tour 14 OSHA10 4 | HBRA of Fairfield County | JANUARY 2017 Letter From The CEO Upcoming Events IBS 2017 Luxury Home Tour 2017 p.3 p.3 p.6 p.7 p.8 p.10 Member News Corbo Associates - New Home In Washington p.12 Bucks Building Trend Mamaroneck Self Storage Celebrates First Anniversary Of Business New Members OSHA10 Builder News 6 Technology Trends That Defined Construction In 2016 Moody’s Forecasts A Positive Outlook For Homebuilding, Products In 2017 The 10 Biggest Housing Stories Of 2016 p.13 p.14 p.16 p.16 p.16 Eight Ways to Ensure Happier Clients in 2017 p.16 Marketwatch: Housing, Lot Shortage p.17 Boosts Teardowns Talking Shop: How Builders Are Addressing The p.18 Skilled-Labor Shortage A Builder’s Guide To Housing Trends In 2017 p.8 Winter Trade Showcase Which is Better? Houzz or Pinterest? Member Benefits Advertising/Sponsor Pages Hocon Gas County TV & Appliance DiMatteo Elevator Service Company Ed’s Garage Doors Interstate Lumber Fairfield County Bank Ridgefield Supply East Haven Builders Supply United Bank CTC&G Ring's End Editorial Staff Gina Calabro Publisher/Editor Clare Michalak Designer Sarah Iannarone Executive Assistant HBRA of Fairfield County 2228 Black Rock Turnpike, Suite 307 Fairfield, CT 06825 203-335-7008 hbra@buildfairfieldcounty.com www. buildfairfieldcounty.com p.12 p.17 p.18 p.20 p.2 p.5 p.5 p.9 p.9 p.11 p.11 p.15 p.17 p.21 p.23 p.24 Want to advertise? Contact the office for more information and rates.

THE SMART CHOICE For Making Your Dream Kitchen A Reality SMART HOME CONTROL THERMADOR SUBZERO / WOLF GE MONOGRAM ...and more BEST SERVICE AT THE GUARANTEED BEST PRICE In-Store And Online 2770 Summer Street • Stamford, CT 06905 203-327-2630 STORE HOURS: MON & THURS: 9AM-9PM | TUES, WED, FRI & SAT: 9AM-6PM | SUN: 11AM-5PM www.countytv.com Look no further for an insurance agent who can work with you to design an insurance portfolio just right for your business. If you engage in construction or remodeling of one or two family residences in CT then I want to talk to you. Our construction insurance program includes: • General Liability • • • Property Business Auto Inland Marine • Workers Compensation • Umbrella • Builders Risk Kim Marie DiMatteo, CIC, MWCA I have been in the construction insurance business since 1992. I know the markets, the products, and what’s right for you. Call me today to schedule a convenient appointment. 79 Bridgeport Ave, Shelton, CT 06484 | 203.924.5429 | www.dimatteogrp.com

MESSAGE FROM THE EXECUTIVE OFFICER Dear HBRA Members, Happy New Year! 2016 was a momentous year for the HBRA of Fairfield County - new events, many new members, new committees, and new staff. This new year will be no different as we started planning the 2017 events months ago. Make sure to check in on our website often and Building Connections for updated info - you won’t want to miss out! If you weren’t able to register for the January OSHA class (we sold out in December), March dates are now available. Don’t wait too long though-the seats are already filling up. We had a large faction from Fairfield County attending IBS in Orlando this year. It was an information packed event offering education and some of the most innovative products. For all that attended I hope you came away with as many great ideas and possibilities as I did! Be sure to check out the recent articles on our Member News page. Ralph Corbo is a longtime member of Fairfield and was in the news for his high tech $6.9 million home in Litchfield. Congratulations to the Murphy brothers and the Mamaroneck Self Storage staff on their proclamation declaring Dec. 21 Mamaroneck Self Storage Recognition Day in Westchester County. See page 12. The 2017 Luxury Home Tour is set for April 21-23! Homes in Greenwich and Darien will be showcased that weekend offering prospective buyers and the public the opportunity to see some of the most exceptional homes and amenities of our members. Luxury Home Tour sponsorships and advertising opportunities are available. Sponsors for the tour will receive a wide variety of promotional advertising including print media train platform, ads in the Official Tour Guidebook that will be distributed to 6 | HBRA of Fairfield County | JANUARY 2017 all tour visitors, local businesses, Social Media, email blasts, e-Newsletter articles and a unique mobile application. The Luxury Home Tour Website is accessible at ctluxuryhometour.com. Two charities, one local and one national, will receive donations from ticket sales. See page 10. Lastly, with the new year be sure to check the Members Benefits pages. Last year our members saved thousands of dollars on Verizon and NAHB discount programs that not only covers the cost of membership but puts money in your pocket! As always, if you have any questions, please call the office or e-mail us at hbra@buildfairfieldcounty.com! Best, Gina Calabro gina@buildfairfieldcounty.com “Every man owes a part of his time and money to the business or industry in which he is engaged. No man has a moral right to withhold his support from an organization that is striving to improve conditions within his sphere.” --Theodore Roosevelt

February 1, 2017 General Membership Meeting Ed’s Garage Doors & Sunshine Floors Showrooms 136 Water Street Norwalk, CT Click Here to Register March 1, 2017 General Membership Meeting Legislative Night Info to follow shortly March 14, 2017 Winter Trade Showcase (Free Builder Event) Sheraton Stamford 700 E Main Street Stamford, CT See Page 17 for Details March 30-31, 2017 OSHA10 Construction Ring's End Educational Facility 160 Avon Street Stratford, CT Click Here to Register April 5, 2017 General Membership Meeting Connecticut Stone 39 Larkin Street Stamford, CT Click Here to Register April 26, 2017 Home Building Industry Day at the Capitol (HBID) Old Judiciary Room, Capitol Building 210 Capitol Avenue Hartford CT Click Here to Register Upcoming Committee Meetings Associate Council Committee Meeting Mon February 13, 2017 4pm HBRA Office Membership Committee Meeting Wed February 15, 2017 12:00pm HBRA Office Marketing & Sponsorship Meeting Wed February 15, 2017 9:30 HBRA Office Golf Committee Meeting Thurs February 16, 2017 3:30 HBRA Office JANUARY 2017 | HBRA of Fairfield County | 7

NAHB Events The International Builders’ Show The International Builders Show held in Orlando, FL from January 11-13th welcomed approximately 80,000 attendees, as part of Design & Construction Week®. Thousands of building professionals attended more than 160+ education sessions in 8 tracks that covered the breadth of the entire building industry. Many programs, events and education sessions provided opportunities for attendees to network with colleagues and have a lot of fun. The IBS exhibits spanned over 569,000 net square feet, with more than 1,500 manufacturers and suppliers. There were lots of new experiences at IBS, including more hands-on, interactive learning experiences from the new Builder Clinics and Tech Bytes sessions, the CEDIA Smart Home Pavilion, the NAHB Meeting of the Members and an inside look at how high performance works at the new Building Performance Lab. The International Builders’ Show® will be in Orlando January 9 – 11, 2018. 8 | HBRA of Fairfield County | JANUARY 2017

Specializing In: Residential Elevators | Commercial Elevators | Construction Hoists Limited Use Limited Application Elevators (LULA) Vertical Platform Lifts | Inclined Lifts | Stair Lifts Dumbwaiters | Material Lifts (Vertical Reciprocating Conveyors) And all other associated Vertical Transportation Equipment Serving: Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and Eastern New York 203-757-5000 www.ElevatorServiceCo.com CT Lic.# ELV. 400105 R1 - RI Lic. # 21 MA Lic.# EC-000093 Providing not one, but ALL Major Manufacturer’s Equipment BEAUTY. ELEGANCE. STRENGTH. Our Aluminum Doors Will Surprise You. Ed’s Garage Doors offers a broad selection of aluminum doors that are the perfect complement to your home. Visit our showroom to see many exclusive aluminum doors on display, and talk with a design expert about our countless in-stock and custom options. Showroom Hours: Mon. – Fri.: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm Saturday: 9:00 am – 3:00 pm Evenings: By appointment Sunday: Closed 136 Water Street, Norwalk, CT 06854 203-847-1284 edsgaragedoors.com ® JANUARY 2017 | HBRA of Fairfield County | 9

HBRA EVENTS LUXURY HOME TOUR The HBRA Presents the Luxury Home Tour: April 21 - 23, 2017 The Luxury Home Tour, presented by HBRA of Fairfield County on April 21-23, 2017 will feature some of the most magnificent homes in Greenwich and Darien. Prospective buyers will be able to view these well-appointed homes that represent the vision and artistry of some of the most admired and innovative home builders in the lower Fairfield County area. The homes on the tour will be staffed by Builder employees and HBRA volunteers. Guided tours will take place from 10am-Noon and then open from 1pm – 5pm for tour patrons to view the homes. The tours offers different sponsorship and advertising opportunities. No other promotional opportunity available in the Fairfield County Market has the ability to deliver hundreds of potential home buyers and future customers right to your doorstep. Sponsors for the tour will receive a wide variety of promotional advertising including print media in CT Cottages and Gardens Magazine, Train Platform advertising in Lower Fairfield CT & Westchester County, NY, and recognition and advertising in 10 | HBRA of Fairfield County | JANUARY 2017 the Official Tour Guidebook that will be distributed to all tour visitors, local businesses. Online promotion includes targeted Social Media Posts, Email blasts, e-Newsletter articles and a unique mobile application. Plus the Luxury Home Tour Website accessible at ctluxuryhometour.com. Two charities, one local and one national, will receive donations from net ticket sales. The deadline to become a sponsor and to advertise in the GuideBook is February 28th. For more information on advertising and sponsorship opportunities, call the HBRA office at 203335-7008 or visit www.ctluxuryhometour.com. MEDIA SPONSOR

spin zoom click explore Take a virtual tour through our award-winning showroom from the comfort of your home or office. Interstate + Lakeland Lumber’s Design Center is a state-of-the-art, high-end, custom showroom built in the original 1922 mill shop. It provides a gallery style setting for premium windows, doors, and hardware and our specialty, custom millwork. Our experienced representative is on hand to answer any of your questions and provide solutions to your building challenges. To learn more, contact Frank Bowron at 203-531-8050 ext 1156 fbowron@interstatelumber.com http://www.interstatelumber.com/services/designcenter-tour.html Financing some of the top builders in Fairfield County. People you trust, service you expect, and products to fit your financial needs. • Construction Financing • Commercial Mortgages • Term Loans • Revolving Lines of Credit 877.431.7431 • www.fairfieldcountybank.com NMLS ID #516624 EQUAL HOUSING L E ND E R MEMBER FDIC JANUARY 2017 | HBRA of Fairfield County | 11

MEMBER NEWS Corbo Associates - New Home In Washington Bucks Building Trend Most high-end construction projects are done for a specific client, with everything designed to custom specifications. But a house called “Stone Bridge” is being built on Nettleton Hollow Road with no particular buyer in mind — unless it’s someone looking for the latest high-tech amenities. Geothermal technology heats and cools the house. The home also features a security system that can be controlled from a smartphone, laptop or tablet, and the owner can also adjust the temperature, lights and audio system with the same devices. Read More Mamaroneck Self Storage Celebrates First Anniversary Of Business Ross Weiner, on behalf of Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino, presented the Murphy brothers and the Mamaroneck Self Storage staff with a proclamation declaring Dec. 21 Mamaroneck Self Storage Recognition Day in Westchester County. The 40,000-square-foot facility, which was built to be better than 50 percent more energy-efficient than required by the standard building code regulations with a projected $32,000 per year average operating cost savings, was a recent winner of the 2016 HOBI Award for “Best Green Commercial Building,” according to a press release. Read More 12 | HBRA of Fairfield County | JANUARY 2017

NEW MEMBERS Welcome to the newest members of HBRA of Fairfield County! Go to www.buildfairfieldcounty.com for their contact info. Brian Hyla APEX Project Planning Founded by industry experts in 2014, APEX is one of the most respected luxury home construction consultancy and project management firms in the world. We connect with the foremost leading professionals in architecture, general contracting, trade craftsman and other key partners to provide a collaborative team approach to every building project. John Dumke Sterling Building & Restoration Sterling Building & Restoration has been restoring, renovating and building new homes for discerning clients in Connecticut for fifteen years. Sterling’s experience with antique and older homes brings an informed perspective to design and construction, combining the grace and charm of past eras with modern building practices and the amenities of today’s sophisticated home. Tye Schlegelmilch EfficientLifestyle EL is a holistic management solution that allows homeowners to seamlessly control and better understand all aspects of home ownership. The EL System helps homeowners make informed decisions on the timing of routine maintenance tasks for their homes as well as select best-in-class service professionals for home maintenance, repairs, and improvements. Richard P. Uva Aqua Pool & Patio Aqua Pool designs, installs and services the highest quality swimming pools, spas, and landscapes in Connecticut and neighboring New England states. We have been highly awarded as one the industry’s most trusted and forward thinking pool companies. Our innovative designs, staffing practices, and thought provoking abilities have earned us the following recognition. MADISON Ken J. Esposito Madison Properties, LLC WELCOME TO OUR NEW AFFILIATE MEMBERS Elio Vetrini County TV & Appliance Bill Green EfficientLifestyle James Carr Wells Fargo JANUARY 2017 | HBRA of Fairfield County | 13

SEMINARS AND TRAINING Register Online or call the HBRA office at 203-335-7008 OSHA 10 Hour Construction Thursday, March 30 & Friday, March 31, 2017* 8:00am-2:00pm Breakfast/Registration starts at 7:30AM Rings End Educational Facility 160 Avon Street, Stratford, CT OSHA is coming to FINE you! Get ahead of them & learn what you need to know for your business and your employees. The OSHA 10hour construction training course is designed for anyone in the construction industry. Upon completion, participants will receive an OSHA construction safety and health 10-hour course completion card from the Department of Labor. OSHA 10 cards are good for 5 years. HBRA Members: $30.00 Non-Members: $60.00 *Must attend both dates in order to receive OSHA card-per federal regulation. Continental Breakfast & Lunch included both days. Payment must be received by March 24th to reserve your spot. Walk-ins will not be accepted at this course due to limited seating. Sponsored by: 14 | HBRA of Fairfield County | JANUARY 2017

Our New Showroom At Ridgefield Supply is Opening in the Spring of 2017 We Will Be Featuring an Extensive Display Showcase of Andersen® Windows & Doors Since 29 Prospect Street, Ridgefield, CT 203.438.2626 www.ridgefieldsupply.com Mon. - Fri. 7 - 4 • Sat. 8 - 4 • Closed Sunday 1883 LUMBER • BUILDING MATERIALS • WINDOWS • DOORS • MILLWORK • HARDWARE • PAINT JANUARY 2017 | HBRA of Fairfield County | 15

BUILDER NEWS The 10 Biggest Housing Stories Of 2016 Hallie Busta 6 Technology Trends That Defined Construction In 2016 Hallie Busta Technologies like 3-D printing and augmented and virtual reality typically capture attention for the future they promise — one in which buildings rise nearly at whim and visualization tools make seeing the result of design choices that much easier. Day to day, however, the application of these and other tools and systems is more nuanced. Rather than offthe-shelf solutions, innovation occurs primarily at the project level and addresses its unique needs. From new ways to track equipment use and worker productivity to the emerging modular construction category, we explore how those unique applications came together in some of 2016’s biggest industry tech topics Read More Moody’s Forecasts A Positive Outlook For Homebuilding, Products In 2017 Sean Barry The 2017 outlook for the North American homebuilding and building materials sectors is positive as the housing market continues to see low interest rates, housing starts and new home sales sitting roughly 30% below historical trends and tight inventory, indicating pent-up demand, according to data from Moody’s provided to Construction Dive. The credit rating agency forecasts revenues in the homebuilding industry to rise at an annual rate of more than 10% for the next 12 to 18 months, while weighted industry gross margins will be more than 20% for the same period. Operating income in the building materials sector is also expected to grow by more than 7% during that time. Read More We typically track residential construction news on a daily, weekly, monthly and even quarterly basis. In this article, however, we’re zooming out to look at 2016 in full. From new regulations to big deals to the industry’s reaction to President-elect Donald Trump, we’ve rounded up the stories that went beyond the headlines to impact homebuilders, remodelers and developers this year and that stand to influence business in 2017. Industry observers have spent the year betting on the rate at which more younger buyers will enter the market, predicting when home-price increases will abate and discussing how a dose of new construction is needed to boost recovery. Underscoring all these discussions, however, is whether builders will have enough help to keep up with demand as its pace increases. Read More Eight Ways to Ensure Happier Clients in 2017 Kacey Bradley With the New Year comes new challenges in the industry, new projects, and new opportunities to keep clients happy. The ball drop heralds a new season, and your clients will have all kinds of ideas about home improvement and remodeling. Some of these ideas are closely tied to their personal dreams and resolutions, but the projects won’t always go as they desire and you plan. Read More 16 | HBRA of Fairfield County | JANUARY 2017

Marketwatch: Housing, Lot Shortage Boosts Teardowns Sean Barry Dive Brief: Single-family construction’s slow recovery, along with a pervasive lot shortage, means more tear-down projects are likely, MarketWatch reported. Teardowns in 2015 accounted for 7.7%, or 55,000, of all single-family starts, according to figures from the National Association of Home Builders, a number that is expected to grow. The teardown market was strong in the late 1990s and early 2000s and petered out during and immediately following the housing crash. Challenges facing the teardown market include aligning the new property with its existing neighbors, zoning rules and square footage caps. From new ways to track equipment use and worker productivity to the emerging modular construction category, we explore how those unique applications came together in some of 2016’s biggest industry tech topics Read More ANNOUNCING the arrival of our new 8-story BOOMTRUCK CONNECTICUT - East Haven - Manchester - Newtown SANDY HOOK - 2 Turnberry Lane - 203-426-0030 NEW YORK - Millwood • Mold / Mildew Resistant Board • Fire Rated Board • ½” Light Weight Board • Exterior Sheathing • Metal Studs • Acoustical Ceiling Tile JANUARY 2017 | HBRA of Fairfield County | 17

A Builder’s Guide To Housing Trends In 2017 Hallie Busta Talking Shop: How Builders Are Addressing The SkilledLabor Shortage Hallie Busta The skilled-labor shortage persists in the construction industry, pushing wages up, extending project timelines and putting pressure on builder– trade relations. That’s made the topic consistent fodder for discussion throughout this year’s Design and Construction Week, currently underway in Orlando, FL. During a three-hour seminar Wednesday morning, builders shared tips for finding and training newcomers and maintaining ties with their trades when labor is hard to find. Labor will stay tight Labor was joined by lots and lending as the three factors cited by National Association of Home Builders Chief Economist Robert Dietz during a press conference as essential to the residential construction industry’s health. And they all seem to be in a holding pattern — labor, in particular. Construction’s job openings rate was 2.7% in November, according to preliminary figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics released this week, compared to 1.5% in November 2015 and 3.3% this past July. Economists had predicted that the labor shortage would plateau in 2016, as a slump in the energy markets was expected to route more workers into the construction industry. That didn’t happen at the level anticipated, Dietz said. Instead, the situation persists as housing demand levels continue to rise. For John Bissett, president of JM Weston Homes in Colorado Springs, CO, the labor shortage has pushed delivery on his company’s typical single-family homes from 90 days at the height of the last building boom to 150 days currently. “We’re not being any lazier, we just can’t get people on the job site,” he told attendees at the DCW event. He’s not alone. Read More If 2016 saw the pace of the homebuilding industry’s protracted recovery pick up slightly, 2017 could see a more concerted spring forward. That’s due to rising (but still low) mortgage rates, continual gains in new construction activity and a bevy of first-time buyers waiting for the price (and product) to be right for their shot at homeownership. “The housing market is relatively tight right now and is expected to loosen somewhat in 2017,” Andres Carbacho-Burgos, a director at Moody’s Analytics, said. That loosening is imperative for affordability — a current weight on recovery. Below, we explore how price growth, inventory conditions, buyer demographics and design trends will shape the 2017 spring and summer buying seasons. Read More 18 | HBRA of Fairfield County | JANUARY 2017

2ND ANNUAL TRADE SHOWCASE TUESDAY, MARCH 14, 20l7 | 6-9PM STAMFORD SHERATON 700 E Main St. Stamford, CT 06901 RESERVE YOUR TABLE This is a great opportunity for Associate Member Companies to network and promote your business to the HBRA Builder Members at this Builders Only event! Only 40 tables available First Come/First Serve $300 - Regular Table 6 ft. table includes tablecloth (8 x 10 space) Only Two Sponsorships Still Available $800 GOLD * Premium Table * Inside front cover ad in program * Logo on event banner * Opportunity to speak * Logo on all event marketing materials & social media Contact the HBRA office to secure a sponsorship or table space at hbra@buildfairfieldcounty.com or 203-335-7008. This is a FREE EVENT for HBRA Builder Members Current Sponsors for over 60 years JANUARY 2017 | HBRA of Fairfield County | 19

BUILDER NEWS Which is Better? Houzz or Pinterest? Jessica Pace Erin Treat of Durango travels a lot, which means when she plans a home improvement project, she has little time to sit down with a decorator or peruse vendors. But because of Pinterest, Treat said she was able to coordinate projects – including new kitchen lights and floor tiling – by sharing Pins with Sheryl Lock, coowner of Handcrafted House in Durango. “In Durango, we have limited access to vendors and design options,” Treat said. “Pinterest refined the search, and it’s a way to communicate.” Since the advent of Pinterest nearly seven years ago, the image-sharing site has evolved into a simultaneous idea machine, time-waster and, for some, an effective business tool. “Our business is probably 90 percent online, 10 percent local. Pinterest drives customers to us,” said Jenny Wrenn, co-owner of Mexican Tile Designs in Bayfield. Wrenn and her partner have been in business three years, and Pinterest drives 20 percent of their web traffic.“We still use Facebook and Instagram and get a sliver of business from them, but neither compare to Pinterest,”Wrenn said. Throughout Durango, decorators, interior designers and home improvement suppliers who are Pinterest users say the website – a visual mediator between client and consultant – has transformed the project- planning process. “People will just email us a picture they found and say, ‘Can you do this for me?’” Wrenn said. Visual communication of that sort in an aesthetics20 | HBRA of Fairfield County | JANUARY 2017 based industry is a growing practice with businesses’ clientele. Rick Klatt, co-owner of McCormick Tile & Stone, said customers introduced him to Pinterest two years ago, and he’s used it since as a demonstration device. “We have a big-screen TV in our show room to show clients different colors and designs and allow them to see them in a real-world application,” Klatt said. “It’s a sales tool.” It’s also a proven path to navigating taste.“All the time, customers come in with too many ideas or not with any, and you’re narrowing the direction. You can feel a customer out through Pinterest,” Klatt said. Andrew Pietrack of Colors Inc., a Durango paint supplier and consultant, handles a lot of walk-in customers, particularly at this time of year when cold weather steers them inside to focus on interior decorating. Pietrack sometimes uses his own Pinterest account to share ideas with clients and help them pinpoint and eliminate color schemes.“In my experience, customers come in and you can tell by what they’re wearing what colors they’re interested in,” he said. “Sometimes you just have to give approval on decisions they’ve already made.” After Pinterest launched in 2010, it subsequently became the popular subject of studies and commentary as to why the site is addicting, why women are its predominant users (about 71 percent of more than 110 million) and how it can culminate to stress and envy. In 2013, the world learned of “Pinterest stress,” an inferiority complex afflicting account-holding moms who said, in a survey conducted by the “Today” show, they feel belittled when they see other moms post their

crafty achievements on Pinterest. But as a professional mechanism, Pinterest is a “big picture” tool – a virtual collage of color schemes, architectural details and other design elements. Designers say for both themselves and their clientele, clicking on the pins – exploring the website behind them, the methodology of the project, finding specific vendors and how-tos – is beside the point. “Follow-through of clicks isn’t as important as just having a visual,” said Sheryl Lock, Handcrafted House co-owner. “I had a customer who wanted to redo her bathroom but had no idea how. Houzz and Pinterest let us find common denominators.” Among local home interior professionals, Houzz is either the runner-up or preferred site to Pinterest. Pins can be misleading and increase guesswork for homeowners. For instance, unlike Pinterest, Houzz always accurately references color numbers. Houzz also provides more conceptual images – showcasing entire room designs. The internet and design sites in general have accelerated the planning stage of decorating for local operations. “When I first started in this business 16 years ago, you got ideas from catalogs,” said Amy Favour of Amy Favour Interior Design. “Having all these online platforms is a great way to find products, but you can waste a lot of time and get sidetracked.” That’s equally true for clients.“If you’re building a home or remodeling, there is so much available that it gets overwhelming to people and you have to narrow it down for them,” Favour said. “With all the technology, someone who maybe would have hired someone before has access to vendors and takes on a project themselves, but when they get into it, they find coordinating it is more than they counted on.” MEET THE MOST POWERFUL BUSINESS PARTNERS IN FAIRFIELD COUNTY. Kathryn A. Eren, VP, Cash Management Officer; Lisa Stuard, AVP Commercial Loan Administrator; Maureen Hanley-Bellitto, SVP, Commercial Team Leader; Gregory Pastor, Jr. VP, Commercial Banking Officer; Kim Karl, VP, Commercial Banking Officer; Deep community roots. Unrivaled market knowledge. Unmatched customer service. When a bank builds its commercial banking team around the values that truly make a difference in helping your business and community grow and prosper, that’s more than banking. That’s changing the way you bank. Talk to us today. Visit bankatunited.com/commercial JANUARY 2017 | HBRA of Fairfield County | 21

MEMBER BENEFITS NAHB Member Advantage Discounts NAHB Member Advantage gives members an easy way to reduce expenses, maximize profits and increase efficiency. Through agreements with leading national companies, NAHB offers exclusive discounts on a variety of products and services that can benefit your business, employees and family. In the past year, members have saved over $17M through Member Advantage. For the most up-todate information about which companies are offering discounts as well as detailed information on how to access the savings, please visit www.nahb.org/ma Big deals for your business. Join the nation’s most reliable 4G LTE network and, for a limited time, get access to device and bill credits designed to equip your teams with the right technology and to help improve your bottom line. Receive up to a $10 instant discount with the purchase and activation of select 4G LTE devices.*     ew 2-yr activation or renewal on $24.99+ plan req’d. Offer valid 1.1.2017 through 3.31.2017. Receive a FCA US LLC is pleased to announce a special $500 cash allowance toward the purchase or lease of many of the most popular vehicles in our lineup. Between Chrysler, Dodge, FIAT®, Jeep® and Ram®, there's something for everyone. NAHB members and their employees can combine this stackable $500 cash allowance with most current retail incentives and choose an On The Job program allowance. Plus, same household family members receive a $500 cash allowance, stackable with most local and national retail incentives, toward the purchase or lease of a vehicle. NAHB member business owners and their employees also receive On The Job program benefits. These benefits include: • No-Extra-Charge-2-Year Gas/Diesel Lube-Oil Filter Allowance • Up to $1,000 Commercial Graphics Program Allowance • Up to $1,000 Commercial Equipment/Upfit Allowance • $500 Bosch® Power Tool Packages • $300-$1,000 Allowance on Select Mopar® Service Contracts Redeem this offer today! How to Register: Visit www.mynpp.com, select Company, then Construction, then Residential. Select HB&RA - Home Builders and Remodelers Associations from the dropdown menu, complete the enrollment and START SAVING! $100 bill credit when activating any new 4G LTE smartphone.     ew 2-yr activation on $34.+ plan req’d. Offer valid 1.1.2017 through 3.31.2017. 22 | HBRA of Fairfield County | JANUARY 2017

Cottagesgardens.Com | sePtemBer 2016 Classic Roots Celebrating Connecticut design Icons connecticut cottages & gardens september 2016 cottagesgardens.com

REdefining home improvement RingsEnd.com 24 | HBRA of Fairfield County | JANUARY 2017 800 390 1000

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