9-12, 2021

FAQs – Best of IBS Awards

Important Dates

  • September 8 – Entry process opens
  • November 2 – Early bird deadline
  • November 18 – Deadline for entries
  • November 23 – December 22 – Preliminary judging takes place (finalists selected)
  • Early January – Finalists and non-winners notified via email regarding the status of their entry(ies)
  • February 9-10 – Onsite judging takes place
  • February 11 – Winners announced at the 2021 Best of IBS Awards ceremony during the 2021 International Builders' Show in Orlando


Do I have to be an IBS exhibitor to apply?

Do I have to be an NAHB member to apply?

Can a KBIS exhibitor apply?

Can I enter a product that was previously entered in a prior year?
Yes, but keep in mind that innovation is one of the judging criteria.

Can I enter the same product in more than one category?
Yes, your product can be entered into two Best of IBS Awards categories.

My product won’t be available for sale until the middle of 2021.  Can I still enter the Best of IBS Awards?
If your product is being displayed at IBS as part of your regular exhibit, you may enter the 2021 Best of IBS Awards. The judges must be able to visit any product that is being entered into the 2021 Best of IBS Awards, as part of the judging process.  Only those exhibitors named as finalists will be visited by the judges.

Do you accept entries from outside the United States?
Yes. Entries from companies outside the U.S. are welcome to submit, as long as the company is an exhibitor in the 2021 International Builders' Show.


How much does it cost to submit my application(s)?
All Best of IBS product entries are free until November 2. After November 2 there is a $100 submission fee per product entry. 


The 2021 Best of IBS Awards categories are:

  • Best Energy Efficient Product
  • Best Green Building Product
  • Best Home Technology Product
  • Best Indoor Product
  • Best Kitchen & Bath Product
  • Best Outdoor Product
  • Best Window & Door Product
  • Most Innovative Building Material
  • Most Innovative Construction Tool

Can I change my entry to a different category after submitting?
Yes, you may change your entry to a different category until November 22, 2020, by contacting Damaris Piraino at [email protected] or 202-266-8321.

What should I do if I'm not sure which category best fits my entry?
Enter your product in the category you feel is most appropriate. Unfortunately, we cannot move the entry to a different category once the judging process starts.


What type of photos are requested in the application?
We are looking for professional-quality color photos. The photos may be used in social media, on the Best of IBS Awards web page, in post-show PR, etc.

Do I need to include high-resolution images with my entry?
The application form will accept a maximum file size of 2 MB per photo. If we need a higher resolution photo, we will contact the entrant.

Is there a photo release form?
Yes. You cannot complete the application without agreeing to the terms and conditions (see entry form) governing the uploaded content.


Are product entries anonymous?
No, but the judges are required to keep all product information confidential until the first day of the show, when we announce product names. Prior to the show, we only announce the company names of the products that are finalists.

How are the winners selected?
Judging is conducted by an expert panel of builders, remodelers and other industry professionals, as well as industry media, from across the country. There are three judges assigned to each of the above categories (total of 27 judges).

Judges designate finalists prior to the show and then visit all finalists in their assigned category at the show, on February 9 and 10. Judges will be designated by a special ribbon to alert the exhibitor staff when they are visiting the exhibitor’s booth to see the exhibitor’s entry.

The judges will select one winner in each of the nine categories and one of the category winners will receive the Best in Show Award.

Awards Criteria

  • Innovation – The product is either new (this type of product has never been offered) or has been significantly changed and would be deemed a game-changer in its product class.
  • Functionality – The product will be well-used by the builder in/for their business or the consumer in their daily lives.
  • Good Design – The product has clean lines and is intelligently attractive for its purpose.
  • Builder/Consumer Friendly – The product will help the builder solve a specific issue, help them add to their bottom line and/or helps solve a specific problem for the consumer/will be a product that a consumer is excited about having in their home.

Hints & Tips

  • Be sure your product description makes it clear why your product is better than the competition's.
  • Be concise in your product description.
  • For your product's website, be sure to provide a direct link to the product page on your website; don't just provide a link to your company's website home page. Due to the number of entries, the judges won't take the time to search around your website to find the entered product.
  • For the GREEN CATEGORY, if your product has 3rd-party testing verification, be sure to mention that in the description.

Additional Questions

What if I start my submission and cannot complete it?
Entries must be completed before submittal; otherwise your work will be lost. Completed entries must be received on or before November 18, 2020.

Who do I contact if I have questions while submitting?
Contact Damaris Piraino at [email protected] or 202-266-8321.

Can I mail my application?
In an effort to be environmentally friendly, cost-effective and more efficient, we will only accept electronic entries.

What are the benefits of winning a Best of IBS Award?

  • All finalists (company only) are highlighted in a national press release to industry media prior to the NAHB International Builders' Show. Winning entrants (product and company) are featured in a national press release to industry media immediately after the Best of IBS Awards ceremony on the last day of the show.
  • All finalists (company only) are listed in the IBS Official Show Guide distributed onsite at the show and via BuildersShow.com.
  • An engraved trophy (duplicates are available for purchase through our vendor).
  • Highlighted on buildersshow.com throughout the year.
  • Highlighted in the NAHBNow blog.
  • Recognition on the all of the NAHB International Builders’ Show social media sites (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.).
  • Recognition at the 2021 Best of IBS Awards Ceremony held at the 2021 International Builders' Show.
  • All finalists and winners receive a marketing toolkit that can be used to promote their award.

For more information about this item, please contact Damaris Piraino at 800-368-5242 x8321 or via email at [email protected].

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