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Hearth & Home October 2016

Who Reads Hearth & Home?
Laura Litchfield, for one!

Huntsville Province, Ontario

Occupation: HPBA Canada Director of Operations

Special Interests/Hobbies: “My great big extended family, reading, writing, hiking. I’ve recently jumped back on the Blue Jays bandwagon and revived my interest in baseball. Yes, fair-weather fan – guilty.”

Problems/Issues Facing the Hearth Industry in Canada:

“Definitely government regulation is a cause for concern. A number of jurisdictions are taking Climate Change very seriously and this can result in both opportunities and threats. I think it’s important for industry members to be aware of local government agendas, and to foster relationships with local decision-makers – with the help of the association as needed, of course.

“I also see public perception as a potential problem. There is often a surprisingly negative reaction to positive media items about industry products, and a fair amount of support of negative items. We need to be ready to respond in a positive way when necessary. There seems to be a lack of interest or connection among younger generations toward hearth products and this needs to be addressed on an ongoing basis.”

Key Trends in the Canadian Hearth Industry:

“Efficiency is becoming more important; home heating costs are high in many parts of the country.

“Living in cottage country I see a growing interest in Outdoor Rooms and extending the outdoor season. I think outdoor living products are going to be more and more popular in Canada in the coming years. It seems everyone wants a cozy outdoor space with a fireplace or a fire pit.”

Years Reading Hearth & Home: “Since June of 2000 when I started with HPBAC.”

Reasons for Reading Hearth & Home: “My favorite part is the Business Climate section. It’s interesting to hear what dealers from all over the continent have to say. I also enjoy the profiles of people and companies, especially when they are Canadian. And, as a homeowner, I love seeing the beautiful new hearth products and ideas for my imaginary Outdoor Room.”

Article(s)Ideas:“It might be interesting to read interviews with consumers on what they want in an Outdoor Room, and why they chose a particular type of hearth appliance and what their experience has been with the product.”

More Stories in this Issue

Canada: An Introduction

By Richard Wright

Canada’s economy is struggling, its oil industry is hamstrung by low costs, Foreigners with Money are disrupting the housing market in some of its most attractive major cities, and Metro Vancouver is experimenting with a Net Zero program.

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The Loonie & the Buck

By Bill Sendelback

The loonie may be down, making it difficult for U.S. manufacturers to sell into Canada, but the Canadian hearth industry can easily supply its own dealers and distributors.

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Canadian ’Que

By Lisa Readie Mayer

Despite (because of ?) the country’s economic turmoil, interest in barbecuing remains high and is stoking sales.

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Engaging the Senses

By Lisa Readie Mayer

From grills to outdoor kitchens, and from Montreal to Vermont and New York, this three-year-old store has a business plan that appears to be working well.

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Surprisingly Strong

By Tom Lassiter

Canadians are a resilient lot, and that shows in the continuing sales of patio furniture – at very high prices – if not in retail margins.

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2016 August Business Climate

In early September Hearth & Home faxed a survey to 2,500 specialty retailers of hearth, barbecue and patio products, asking them to compare August 2016 sales to August 2015. The accompanying charts and selected comments are from the 198 useable returns.

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Parting Shot: Hôtel de Glace

Twenty minutes north of Quebec City, in a year-round resort and waterpark called Valcartier Vacations Village, you’ll find the Hôtel de Glace – the Ice Hotel – certainly one of the most unusual places to spend a night.

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