Transform Your Home for Spring with Free Home Reno Shows

Everything you could want to know about the latest in renovation trends, products and services is all at two free renovation shows this April

March 21, 2016

This open-concept living space by My House Design-Build means that whether you're working at your desk or lounging on the couch, the family stays together  — 
This great room is the perfect gathering spot for a family, with a clever dining table that juts seamlessly from the island countertop  — 
As the lines between inside and outside increasingly blurs, home owners are installing folding doors to open their kitchens right on to the deck  — 
This kitchen is on trend in many ways, not least because of that charming, nostalgic family dining nook in the bay window  — 
Screens and shutters are all the rage, especially wooden ones, and can be used indoors or on decks, vertically or horizontally  — 
Moving away from traditional wall art, murals have come back into style, whether photographic, painted or wallpapered  — 
The most in-vogue colour palette of the season is definitely blue-green, of varying levels of hue and vibrancy  — 
Free-standing tubs can be contemporary or vintage, depending on your style. The bathroom on the right also manages to hit the blue-green and frameless glass shower trends  — 
Kitchens, even contemporary ones like this, are increasingly offering different seating arrangements to bring friends and family together  — 
Master bathrooms are increasingly incorporating free-standing tubs that are contemporary yet nostalgic  — 
Left: there's a strong trend to open up staircases to let more light into the home. Right: sleek, energy-efficient gas fireplaces are all the rage  — 

Now that spring has arrived (and because buying a new home is so expensive these days), many people’s thoughts are turning to renovations. But where to begin? Don’t worry: everything you could want to know about the latest in renovation trends, styles and more is on hand – and all for free!

All you have to do is show up at one of two free Greater Vancouver Home Builders’ Association (GVHBA) Spring Home Reno Shows being held in Vancouver on Saturday, April 2 at the VanDusen Botanical Gardens and in the North Shore on Saturday, April 9 at The View on Lonsdale.

Your home is one of the most expensive investments you will ever make, so when it is time to renovate, the GVHBA’s Home Reno Shows will connect you with locally relevant information, resources and professional renovators to help you create your dream living space. The shows will also offer invaluable advice and lessons, with their Ask-a-Pro sessions and renovation seminars.
“The Vancouver and North Vancouver Home Reno Shows feature different renovation experts that work in these respective communities, so you can be confident these companies have the experience working in these local neighbourhoods and understand the unique building requirements,” says Bob de Wit, the CEO of the GVHBA. “Most of the renovators conduct business outside the North Shore and Vancouver area as well, so it really is the right place to find the right contractor for you. They will have displays during the Ask-a-Pro Expo so you can bring your questions and plans to the shows and talk face-to-face with the pros.”
He went on to say that the education seminars are also very popular. During the shows, they will present topics that are specific to the Metro Vancouver market, and not easily found online.  

“We create fresh content so attendees get the most current and relevant information available,” says de Wit, adding that the advice and tips are all free.
Some of the commonly asked questions at the shows include:

  • How do I hire a professional contractor?
  • What are the latest renovation trends?
  • Should I renovate my home, or tear it down and build new?
  • I live in a small condo, so how can I create more functional living space where I am restricted by strata?  

Knowing these are the most frequently asked questions, the GVHBA will be addressing these topics in its on-site seminars.  

“As each homeowner has a unique set of questions, I strongly urge anyone who is thinking about renovating their home to come down to one or both shows … we have the experts to help you,” says de Wit.

Homeowners are encouraged to bring questions and house plans directly to the exhibiting members for free one-on-one consultations. Show entry requires no pre-registration, but if you want a personal consultation, you must reserve your time in advance. Call 778-565-4288 for your 20-minute consultation with one of the GVHBA award-winning RenoMark renovator/builders or designers.


Hottest Spring Renovation Trends on Show    

REW spoke to four local exhibiting renovators who were more than happy to provide their top renovation trends:

Laurel James, Novell Design Build

  • There’s a resurgence – “a nostalgia, if you will” – of traditional kitchens with built-in nooks – perfect for curling up with your morning cup of coffee. “We are renovating a kitchen to accommodate a multi-generational family, complete with a nook, fireplace and a big, stretched-out farm table to gather everyone together.”
  • James is seeing a trend of different seating arrangements in the kitchen to encourage family interaction – it can be various height seating, a prep island and children’s island.
  • Warm metals are big – brass, gold, bronze in reflective or hammered styles
  • Cast iron, slipper or claw foot free-standing tubs are hugely popular. “Again, it speaks to nostalgia, an emotive connection to hearth.”
  • There’s no slowing down on the demand for walls painted in deep tones of blues and greens.
  • Wallcoverings are in vogue in a big way. “Whether they are murals, large scale photography or emotive designs, home owners love wallcoverings.”
  • Screens and shutters are very popular. “As we blur the line between inside and outside they offer shade control and sun control.”

Graeme Huguet, My House Design-Build

  • Home owners want larger, full house renovations with a more holistic approach to the design – meaning better air, water and comfort qualities.
  • Energy efficient and Built Green are the new normal.
  • Homes are increasingly being fitted for aging in place.
  • Radiant floor heating is very popular.
  • There’s a trend towards reconfiguring dated staircases into contemporary, open steel structures with glass and wood treads allowing more natural light into the home.
  • Stairs are becoming pieces of art rather than just a way to get from the main floor to the top floor.
  • Owners are upgrading the outside look of the windows and doors, again often to bring more natural light inside.
  • There’s a high demand for Hardy or rock siding on homes.

Doug Kerr, Kerr Construction

  • Old layouts continue to be opened up, not just internally but also to the outside.
  • People want functional and entertainment rooms that flow seamlessly.
  • Aging in place is the biggest trend – wider doorways and master suites on the main floor.
  • Televisions in the master bathrooms are all the rage.
  • Frameless glass showers and open showers are very trendy.
  • Vinyl plank flooring is hot. “These floors look like wood and yet they are softer and warmer to walk on and they are quite forgiving.”
  • LED lighting is getting better and better with different temperatures of lighting available.
  • Classic and still-oh-so-chic is repurposed/reclaimed brick for walls and old beams for ceilings. “We built a sliding door for a client from an old door that came from his childhood home.”

Todd Senft, reVISION Custom Home Renovations

  • Intergenerational living is the future – home owners are renovating basements and homes, or adding laneway houses, to have either their parents or grown children live with them.
  • Free standing outdoor pizza ovens are the in thing.
  • Owners are installing pass-through folding windows going from the indoor kitchen to the outdoor kitchen.
  • Ensuites are being upgraded with luxurious showers with multiple showerheads and recessed niches for your shampoos and soap, as well as large free-standing tubs and sleek rectangular floor drains that are almost hidden.


For more information about the GVHBA's Home Reno Shows, visit

Michelle Hopkins is a Vancouver-based freelance writer with extensive magazine, newspaper and online writing experience in home décor, new home developments, culinary adventures, wine, travel and more. Michelle writes for many notable publications including Real Estate Weekly and other Glacier Media Group publications, Western Living Magazine, Vancouver Magazine, Home Décor & Renovations, to name just a few. Michelle is passionate about anything to do with real estate.
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