At the 2013 International Builders' Show in Las Vegas today, a panel of experts told the press that remodelers are gaining confidence and agreed with the National Association of Home Builders' assessment that remodeling spending for single-family owner-occupied homes will increase 2.4% in 2013 over 2012.

"We are more confident about the remodeling market's future coming off a strong year of residential remodeling growth, though the post-recession industry is still restrained by the amount of time it takes to convert leads to sales," said 2013 NAHB Remodelers Chairman Bill Shaw, owner of William Shaw and Associates, in Houston. "Our remodeler members are regaining confidence in the market as homeowners move forward with projects that they put off in years past."

"We are predicting slow and steady growth in remodeling activity throughout 2013 and 2014," said Paul Emrath, NAHB's vice president for survey and housing policy research. "That outlook is consistent with the indicators of future activity in our recent Remodeling Market Index (RMI) survey. Many remodelers are reporting increases in calls for bids and appointments for proposals, so now it's a question of how quickly they can convert those calls and appointments into actual work."

Bob Hanbury, owner of House of Hanbury, in Newington, Conn., said "Consumers want to create value by adding bonus spaces without building full additions to their homes. As part of the economic recovery, professional remodelers are helping clients take advantage of their home's hidden assets by remodeling basements, above-garage spaces, and attics to fully take advantage of the size of the home."

Panel member Ben Morey, who owns Morey Construction, in Signal Hill, Calif., has been looking for a backlog and he's seeing that happen. "While the full teardown and rebuild market has not taken off," he says, "homeowners are committing to projects that look for ways to create a new environment within the current floor plan of their home." —Stacey Freed, senior editor, REMODELING. twitter.com/sfreed

Learn more about markets featured in this article: Las Vegas, NV.