Homeowners and homebuyers can see the latest trends, products, mortgage lending, building and technology services available in the market, whether for building, buying or remodeling at a three-day event that started Friday in Longview.

The 17th annual East Texas Builders Association Home & Design Show opened Friday evening at Maude Cobb Convention and Activity Center.

Last year’s show was the first time Casey Carter represented Phillips Flooring Center of Longview as an exhibitor.

That experience led to at least two flooring jobs with customers he met at the show.

“They remembered me, I remembered them, and I think it’s a more relaxed atmosphere,” Carter said.

So, he returned Friday.

“People are enjoying themselves,” he said. “There’s no pressure. They’re not buying anything today, and I think we, as salespeople, are a little more laid back, too, and we just want to kind of establish the face-to-face and make a good impression on them initially.”

Many of the guests at the home and design show ask about the differences in products, said Ashley Campbell, co-owner of Decked Out Construction.

Campbell was making his third appearance at the show representing the Longview company he and his wife, Amber Campbell, own.

Campbell stood atop a sample deck and back patio with Scott Sheffield, a regional manager for Garland-based material manufacturer Fortress Building Products.

The sample deck was made of a composite-based product that comes with a lifetime warranty, while there were both glass and cable stairway railing samples along the steps.

Customers “want to know about the colors, the stain, the mold, and it doesn’t do any of the above,” Campbell said of the deck.

“It’s maintenance-free (and) easy cleanup. You spill something on it, power wash it once or twice a year,” he said. “It’s dog-(urination) friendly. You don’t think about that, but a regular wood deck, that a dog (urinates) on all the time, like a stain-treated deck, it will spot the deck. This, it doesn’t affect it.”

Customers ask about cable and glass railings for higher-end homes at golf courses or lakes, they said, because they want an unobstructed view.

“There’s a lot in the mountains where people have a view for miles and miles,” Sheffield said.

Vinyl plank flooring also has become a popular category, Carter said, and he brought several types to show potential customers.

“It’s not a new product but it is newer, I would say, in that the technology has gotten so much better from 10 years ago. The old vinyl planks weren’t as good as the ones now,” Carter said.

The show continues 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. today and concludes from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday.

“It’s a great chance to meet some new people, pass out some business cards, obviously, and just really establish the relationship there,” Carter said, “and encourage them to come into our store.”

Jimmy Daniell Isaac covers the city of Longview and Gregg County. Follow him on Twitter: @jimmyisaaclives.