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Decks and fences are their thing

Romi Botez and Reese Anderson ready for upcoming home shows
by: Jaime Valdez, Romi Botez, president of American Classic Decks and Fences Inc., sits in his new store’s showroom in Tualatin, examples of products and workmanship available all around him.

By KRISTEN FORBES

For Times Newspapers

or Romi Botez of Tualatin's American Classic Decks and Fences Inc. and Reese Anderson of Tigard's Northwest Fence and Deck, February is a month for shows, expos and new beginnings.

Both will be on hand, along with other representatives from distributor McFarland Cascade, to answer questions about products and projects at the 2008 Portland Yard, Garden and Patio Show Feb. 15-17 at the Oregon Convention Center.

The following week, they'll be at it again: Botez will again represent McFarland Cascade and Anderson will man a booth for his own company at the Portland Home and Garden Show Feb. 20-24 at the Portland Expo Center.

Both agree that these shows mark the beginning of a new season.

'The shows kick off the year for us,' Botez says. 'They kick off the season for outdoor projects. The weather starts warming up, and people get outdoors.'

'Tax time until November,' Anderson says, is the typical season for decking and fencing projects. 'The home shows in February are gearing up for that season.'

Anderson, who works as an installer, caters to mostly residential 'homeowners who don't want to do it themselves and are looking for state-of-the-art materials and (want) someone who is experienced and informed enough to know what they're doing.'

He prides himself on his customized approach, noting that three 10-by-10-foot decks outside three adjacent homes can have three completely different looks.

Botez, who expanded and relocated his store from Sherwood to Tualatin in August, is putting the finishing touches on an updated showroom and helps both types of customer: those who want a complete install and those who prefer an entirely do-it-yourself approach.

Both Botez and Anderson went through McFarland Cascade's certified contractor program, which licenses qualified and experienced contractors and certifies them to sell McFarland Cascade products.

Botez, who offers deck design software to those who want to take on their own projects, has noticed a surge in the DIY industry lately. He notes a 40-60 divide between homebuilder-based new construction and residential remodeling.

Anderson, whose business is mostly residential, says his customers are attracted to the state-of-the-art materials he offers, such as lights, benches and planters.

'We go from ordinary to extraordinary,' Anderson says, noting he works with all budgets.

Botez, too, says no budget is off-limits for him.

Both are looking forward to the Yard, Garden and Patio Show, which will give visitors a chance to view showcased products, make appointments for estimates, and educate themselves about everything from under-deck water proofing to stone composite materials.

Tickets, which are $11 for adults and free for children 12 and under, are available at the Oregon Convention Center ticket box, Safeway TicketsWest locations or online at www.ticketswest.com. The show will take place from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 15, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 16 and 17.

The following week, the Portland Home and Garden Show starts on Wednesday, Feb. 20, and goes until Sunday, Feb. 24, at the Portland Expo Center. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for 6- to 16-year-olds and free to children 5 and under.

Botez's American Classic Decks and Fences, Inc. is open for business 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday at 18300 S.W. 126th Place in Tualatin.

Anderson, who is located in Tigard and says he can always get materials within a day, can be reached at 503-222-1116.

(Kristen Forbes is a freelance writer living in Tigard. To view her blog, visit www.krissymick.blogspot.com .)