As experts still debate about whether or not the economy is actually out of the recession, local businesses at the Hearth and Home Show have a positive outlook for 2010.
"Actually it’s odd, it’s gone differently then for most people," said Owner of All Decked Out David Thomas. "It’s actually gotten busier. Last year and the year before was a little slow in the winter time. That’s how it works in construction. But this year we’ve just been swamped so far this winter."
Consumers may still be feeling the sting of job losses and a difficulty accessing credit, which were two things that fueled a household spending boom a few years ago.
But local businesses say people are focused on spending money at home.
"People are a little bit more careful about what they’re spending their money," said Jerry Miller of Twin Hills Landscaping. "They’re looking to spend a little bit more money on their own homes. With retaining walls, brick work and landscaping, it allows them to put money back into their homes instead of going on vacation. We can create a backyard atmosphere that’s just like a vacation."
Caution seems to be the name of the game, but when it comes to heating and cooling, some say that’s a necessity.
Ron Cohagan of Federal Heating said things are starting to turn around.
"In the summer it was down a good bit, but it’s started to come back now," said Ron Cohagan of Federal Heating.
In January, a national dip in home-furnishing and building materials sales hurt the home sector, but Cohagan says he has high hopes.
"Who knows," said Cohagan. "I hope it will be better."
The Hearth and Home Show will be open Friday and Saturday until 9 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m.