T H E E - M AGAZ I N E O F T H E H B RA O F FA I R F I E L D CO U N TY - A P R I L 2 0 1 9
Member Mixer OSHA10 Construction HBRA Golf Outing
April GMM Associates Panel Builders Forum
mynpp.com NAHB Benefits MunnCo
T H E E - M AG A Z I N E O F T H E H B R A O F FA I R F I E L D CO U N TY Building Connections is a monthly digital magazine produced and published by the Home Builders and Remodelers Association of Fairfield County. Inside you will find the latest association news, legislative updates, upcoming events, and featured articles about the industry.
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Jackie Bertolone Executive Officer Sarah Iannarone Membership & Events Coordinator Clare Michalak Marketing & Graphics Coordinator
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IN THIS ISSUE HBRA NEWS • Message from the Executive Officer p. 5 • Upcoming Events p. 7 • Member Mixer p. 8 • Membership Challenge p. 9 • April General Membership Meeting p. 12 • Associate Panel p. 14 • Builder Roundtable p. 14 • PWB Meeting p. 15 • CT Developers Forum p. 15 • New Members p. 16 • DiMatteo Partners with Cross Insurance p. 18 • DiMatteo Collects Easter Baskets p. 20 • Cheryl Russ 5 Under 40 p. 20 • Advice Column p. 32 • Member Benefits p. 34
BUILDER NEWS • Millennials Want To Move To These Metros • U.S. Needs More Tradespeople • 300+ bridges in CT “Structurally Deficient” • How to Attract Millennial Home Buyers • How These Women are Raising the Bar on Diversity • Construction Needs Younger Workers
p. 22 p. 22 p. 23 p. 23 p. 23 p. 23
NAHB NEWS • NAHB Chairman Updates • Opportunities to Earn CGR, CGB, or GMB • NAHB Resources to Help Navigate Opportunity Zones • First Time Home Buyers Battle Rising Prices • Top 10 Home Features Baby Boomers Want • Builder Confidence Edges Higher in April • Bedrooms, Kitchens Consume Space in New Homes • New Report on Code Compliance Issues • NAHB Podcast Offers New Insight on Housing Economics • OSHA’s Use of Drones • New Homes Month Toolkit
p. 24 p. 24 p. 25 p. 25 p. 25 p. 26 p. 26 p. 27 p. 27 p. 28 p. 28
STATE NEWS • Legislative Updates
Advertisers: County TV & Appliance Pella Windows and Doors DiMatteo Insurance Interstate Lumber Chloe Winston
p. 6 p. 10 p.18 p.19 p. 22
Huber Engineered Woods United Bank Fairfield County Bank Stamford Museum Acadia Insurance Tooher Ferraris
p. 23 p. 25 p. 27 p. 28 p. 29 p. 30
ON THE COVER Prutting & Company Custom Builders, LLC David Prutting Architect: Joeb Moore + Partners Photo by David Sundberg, Esto Photographics http://www.prutting.com/
Ed’s Garage Door Ridgefield Supply First County Bank Marlin Electric CTC&G Ring’s End
p. 33 p. 35 p. 37 p. 38 p. 39 p. 40
2019 VIP PARTNERS HOME BUILDERS AND REMODELERS ASSOCIATION OF FAIRFIELD COUNTY
President Anthony DeRosa DeRosa Builders
Sr. Vice-President Kim DiMatteo DiMatteo Insurance
Vice President John Hertz
Secretary Rob Michaud
The Michaud Group
Immediate Past President Chris Steiner Steiner, Inc.
Propane Pete Battaglio Hocon Gas
Max Bender Bender Supply
Four Square Build & Design
William Pitt Sothebyâ€™s
Doherty & DeLeo
LoParco Associates, Inc.
Elevator Service Company
Michael Wood Wood Builders
LIFE DIRECTORS Joanne Carroll JMC Resources
Peter Fusaro Preferred Builders
Jerry Effren The Greyrock Companies
Maureen Hanley United Bank
Gary Fanali City Carting
Michael Palumbo ERI Building & Design
Peter Gaboriault Bear Paw Builders
Thank you to the following VIP Associate Members for their support in 2019. Due to their generosity the Association greatly benefits - from developing new events and educational opportunities for the membership, to keeping our lights on!
MESSAGE FROM THE EXECUTIVE OFFICER
Dear MembersHappy Spring! It’s been a very busy time for the association as we have welcomed 44 new company members and 19 new affiliate members as part of our recruitment challenge that began in January! Please take a few moments to browse the new members that joined this month in the newsletter and send them a welcome note if you can—or follow them on social media! We look forward to our Member Mixer on May 1 at Two Roads Brewery where we will award prizes to the members who recruited the most new members. And the event will feature table displays from vendors and a delicious bar bite spread. This event is free for builders but preregistration is required and tickets are going fast. Our next big event will be June 12th at Ring’s End Darien which will feature live demos, food trucks and great networking with builders, architects, designers and all other home building related professionals. Please take a few moments to browse our newsletter, register for upcoming events and seminars and read about news on a local, state and national level. This issue features Home Building Industry Day at the Capitol, Professional Women in Building and much more. As always if you have questions or suggestions, don’t hesitate to reach out to me. All the best,
Jackie L. Bertolone Executive Officer
APRIL 2019 | HBRA of Fairfield County 5
COUNTY COUNTY HASHAS ALL YOUR ALL YOUR APPLIANCE APPLIANCE & SMART & SMART HOME HOME NEEDS NEEDS
From From Kitchen Kitchen Appliances Appliances to Home to Home Automation... Automation... WE WE HAVE HAVE IT ALL! IT ALL!
BESTBEST SERVICE SERVICE AT THE AT GUARANTEED THE GUARANTEED BESTBEST PRICE PRICE In-Store In-Store And Online And Online
27702770 Summer Summer Street Street • Stamford, • Stamford, CT 06905 CT 06905 • 203-327-2630 • 203-327-2630 STORE HOURS: STORE HOURS: MON & THURS: MON & THURS: 9AM-9PM 9AM-9PM | TUES, WED, | TUES, FRI WED, & SAT: FRI9AM-6PM & SAT: 9AM-6PM | SUN: 11AM-5PM | SUN: 11AM-5PM
H B RA E V E N TS
MARK YOUR CALENDARS UPCOMING EVENTS
Member Mixer May 1, 2019 Click Here to Register
Builder Roundtable May 10, 2019 Builders-Only
OSHA10 May 16-17, 2019 Click Here to Register
June GMM - Live Demos & Food Trucks June 12, 2019 Click Here to Register
HBRA Annual Golf Outing July 22, 2019 Click Here to Register
Upcoming Member Events
AKDOâ€™s Spring 2019 Factory Outlet Sale
Associates Council May 7, 4:30pm | HBRA Office Golf Committee May 9, 3:00pm | HBRA Office Membership Committee May 15th, 10:30am | HBRA Office PWB Council May 16th | Accurate Lock & Hardware
April 26, 2019 - Click Here to RSVP
Aitoro BAD Night Save the Date - May 9th
Festool Truck Event May 14 - JM Wright Technical High School
APRIL 2019 | HBRA of Fairfield County 7
MEMBER MIXER MEMBER MIXER
May 1, 2019 May 1, Brewery 2019 Two Roads
Two Brewery 1700Roads Stratford Ave 1700 Stratford Ave Stratford, CT 06615 Stratford, CT 06615 6:00 - 9:00PM 6:00 - 9:00PM
Sample local craft beer and bar bites at our Member Mixer. This event is free for builders but Prizes will be awarded to pre-registration is required. members who participated in the The brewerychallenge. is one mile from membership We the have Stratford train station. fun games and opportunities to win free drinks!
Bar Bites Sponsored By:
REGISTER Bar Bites Sponsored By: Bring a Builder Member and get a brew on us! HBRA Members: $25 To register, click the button above or call the office at 203-335-7008 or email email@example.com
Bring a Builder Member and get a brew on us! HBRA Members: $25 IMPERIAL TOPPreregistration HOP SPONSORS The eventSPONSOR is free to all builders. is required. Please call the office at 203-335-7008 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
IMPERIAL SPONSOR TOP HOP SPONSORS
8 HBRA of Fairfield County | APRIL 2019
7 Days left of the Member Recruitment Challenge
Leader Board Suzanne Stillwell 4.5 Karen Bradbury 4 Propane Pete Battaglio
Frank Bowron 3 Rich Cahill 3 Eric Ferraris 3 Angela Legg 3 Mayson Linn 2
How to Score Points: Remember 2 points for a builder, 1 point for associate and .5 point for affiliate. Prizes for the winners include: The top recruiter will win an iPad Mini. Anyone with 2 points or more will win an Amex giftcard. 2019 MEMBER RECRUITMENT
Peter Gaboriault 2 Rich Cunningham 2 Thomas Yaroscak 2 Todd Givens 2
SPIKE BIG | WIN BIG Invite new members to join the HBRA for only $395. This invitation is for new members only and valid for one year.
All HBRA members are invited to participate in the 2019 Member Recruitment challenge starting today! Members who recruit new businesses to join will receive NAHB spike points and are eligible for prizes including Amex giftcards, HBRA membership renewals, and a grand prize of free flights to the 2020 International Buildersâ€™ Show in Las Vegas. Prizes will be presented at the May 1st Member Mixer at Two Roads Brewery.
( To send to Prospective Members)
How To Recruit New Members 1. Invite new members to join the HBRA at the special 2019 pricing of $395 using the flyers linked above. They will then submit their application online at www.buildfairfieldcounty.com using the code 2019NM 2. The HBRA will verify that the company is eligible for the new member pricing and will process their application. Only companies who have not been members for the past 5 years are eligible. 3. Once approved, you will be credited with a new member. We will be updating the member rankings on the HBRA website and on facebook.
Since the 1st of January that HBRA has grown by 44 new member companies and 19 affiliates! APRIL 2019 | HBRA of Fairfield County 9
PRESENTED BY RING’S END
HBRA GOLF CLASSIC HBRA GOLF CLASSIC
The HBRA golf tournament sells out every year! Don’t miss an opportunity to showcase your products and business by donating an exciting raffle prize. Donate your own Raffle Prize Craft Beer Basket Raffle Prize: $250 Wine Basket Raffle Prize: $250
July 22, 2019
Tashua Knolls Golf Course 40 Tashua Knolls Lane Trumbull CT 06611
18 Hole – 11:00AM Shotgun Start 9-Hole – 2:30 PM Shotgun Start Cocktail Hour – 4:00 - 5:00PM Dinner – 5:00PM Early Bird Pricing - Register by June 21st $225 each - $900 foursome Golfer Registration after June 21st $250 each - $1000 foursome Banquet Only Registrations $60 per person
Caddy Shack Station: $2,000 Dinner Sponsor: $2,000 Logo Golf Towel: $1,500 Logo Water Bottle: $1000 Sunglasses Sponsor $750 Ice Cream Cart: $750 Closest to the Pin: $500 Golf Ball Marker: $400 Golf Tees: $400 Hole-In-One Sponsor: $350 Driving Range: $350 Closest to the Pin (9-Hole): $300 Closest to the Line: $400 Closest to the Line (9-Hole): $250 Tee Sponsor (27 Available): $250
For any questions on sponsorship specifics and details:
Please call or email the office at 203-335-7008 or email email@example.com. Please visit https://buildfairfieldcounty.com/2019-hbra-golf-classic/
Please submit, fax, or mail registration by June 24, 2019 Click here for sponsorship information
Click here for golfer and dinneronly registrations.
Please submit, fax, or mail registration by June 24, 2019 to: HBRA of Fairfield County, 2228 Black Rock Turnpike, Suite 307 Fairfield CT, 06825
10 HBRA of Fairfield County | APRIL 2019 or firstname.lastname@example.org or www.buildfairfieldcounty.com For any questions, please call (203) 335-7008.
APRIL 2019 | HBRA of Fairfield County 11
April General Membership Meeting The April General Membership Meeting was a celebration of the Professional Women in Building Council, established in early 2018, and has grown from 15 members to 50. The Board Members of the PWB spoke at the GMM about the reason for the council, the activities and seminars the council has put on as well as the charitable work which they have done over the past year. HBRA Board President, Anthony DeRosa congratulated the PWB on their success on behalf of the board and the entire association. Leigh Overland, architect and HBRA member for over 4 years was the lucky $250 membership raffle winner! A new member of the HBRA and PWB, Iconic Modern Home, hosted the GMM at their new location in Norwalk. Thank you to our hosts and to our membership raffle sponsor, Stephanie Rapp Interiors and our tech sponsors, Smarthome & Theater Systems. The Fairfield County PWB is dedicated to supporting the professional development of women in the home building industry through monthly meetings, seminars, charitable work and networking opportunities wherein they educate each other on trends in the marketplace and tips to improve their skills and their businesses. For more information visit www.buildfairfieldcounty.com/pwb
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APRIL 2019 | HBRA of Fairfield County 13
HBRA NEWS Associate Panel With the help of the membership committee and the associates council the HBRA put together a panel to help guide members— especially new members—with tips and tricks to grow their business through their HBRA membership. HBRA members who joined between 1991 and 2017 and who credit the HBRA with helping to grow and expand their business led an informal panel discussion on ways to cultivate relationships within the organization. They shared experiences of what has worked for them and advice for newcomers. Afterwards the group went across the street to a local pub to put what they learned into action. We thank our panelists and all who came to this event.
Builder Round Table The second Builder Roundtable on April 12 in Fairfield featured legislators from the area to provide an update on tolls and other legislation pending in the state. State CEO Jim Perras joined us for the lively conversation and to provide information on bills we are supporting and opposing in Hartford. Thanks to Michaud Group and James Carpenter Construction for sponsoring this meeting.
Thank you to State Rep. Laura Devlin, Senator Tony Hwang, Rep Brenda Kupchick & Rep. Jason Perillo for joining the conversation. 14 HBRA of Fairfield County | APRIL 2019
The HBRA Builder roundtables are an opportunity for builders to come together and have conversations about what’s going on in the industry. Should you want to host one, have an idea for a topic or facilitator, please contact Jackie. The next builder roundtable will be on May 10th in Greenwich.
PWB Meeting The April PWB meeting was hosted at Lillian August in Stamford on April 18. Twenty nine PWB members & guests joined the monthly meeting for networking and a presentation led by Emilia Ferri of Emilia Ferri Architecture + Design. Emilia presented on “ Demystifying the role of an Architect: “Top Classic Misconceptions”. She lead a great conversation bringing to light what an Architect does, why they are needed and how they engage each project. Emilia brought case studies supporting professional responsibilities and work examples to provide an overall look into the field. The next PWB meeting is on May 16th.
CT Developers Forum The CT Developers Forum brought their monthly meeting to Bridgeport for dinner at Ralph n Rich’s on the topic of Opportunity Zones. Shipman and Goodwin lead the conversation to 30 developers, land use attorneys and realtors. The meeting began with a market update and visit from Senator Dennis Bradley from Bridgeport. For more information about the developers forum visit: https:// hbact.org/ CTDevelopersForum/.
APRIL 2019 | HBRA of Fairfield County 15
HBRA NEW MEMBERS Rich Cunningham Garage Living
Since 2005, Garage Living has completed over 5,000 projects throughout North America. Our knowledge and experience will ensure that your garage makeover is done quickly, efficiently, perfectly. We employ a professionally trained team of designers, installers and service personnel who know how to get the job done right. Our installers are specialists at what they do, and we do not sub-contract any of our work... READ MORE
Superior Hearth Spas & Leisure
Superior Hearth Spas & Leisure is Connecticut’s largest hearth and hot tub destination. We offer complete sales and installations of factory-built gas and wood burning fireplaces, complete with marble, granite and other decorative surrounds and mantels. We carry an array of wood, pellet and gas stoves and inserts from the leading manufacturers in the industry. ... READ MORE
Keller Williams / Matt Rose Realty Group
We understand that buying or selling a home is more than just a transaction: it’s a lifechanging experience. That’s why our team of highly-seasoned real estate professionals is dedicated to providing exceptional, personalized service for all of our clients. We take great pride in the relationships we build and always work relentlessly on the client’s behalf to help them achieve their real estate goals ... READ MORE
Colleen Hankey Kohler Company
Since 1873, Kohler Co. has been improving the level of gracious living by providing exceptional products and services for our customers’ homes and their lifestyles. We believe better business and a better world go hand-in-hand. Whether that is beautiful kitchen and bath products, innovative engines and generators, memorable hospitality offerings or developing clean water, sanitation, and community development solutions around the world ... READ MORE
Datin Brothers Inc.
Datin Bros opened in 1978 with the hopes of being the best. The business began as a landscaping company run by Timothy and Michael Datin, ages 24 and 20. Upon opening, the Datin Brothers were the only 2 employees. Around 1980, we quickly expanded the business to include general excavating to fulfill all the needs of our customers. From the two-man employee days of the opening, DATIN BROS. INC has now expanded to about 15 employees, all with the same goal, the satisfaction of the customer... READ MORE
Slate & Copper Services, LLC Headquartered in Fairfield County, Connecticut, Slate and Copper Services is a full service roofing company. Slate and Copper is owned, and operated by Scott Donahue. Upon finishing high school in 1978, Scott took the family ladder, and a friend’s pickup truck, and began stuffing mailboxes with roofing flyers. What began as an interim undertaking, gradually evolved into a full-fledged entrepreneurial enterprise... READ MORE 16 HBRA of Fairfield County | APRIL 2019
Energy Testing Services ETS President Matt Slattery has over 15 years experience in the energy efficiency building field. As a HERS rater, trainer, home performance contractor, and building science expert, we’ve worked in every type of building. We’ve performed blower door tests on everything from micro-apartments to the largest and most sophisticated high end homes, from 200,000 square feet high-rises to high tech Yale laboratories. .. READ MORE
Sabrina Gross Diaz
Nuwave Audio Video Nuwave Audio Video is a custom engineering firm. We don’t believe in off-the-shelf solutions that can cost you more than you need to spend. We would rather sit down with you, analyze your needs and then design a system just for you. Our engineers not only keep up with the latest technology trends, they often are on the cutting edge of development.... READ MORE
Robert de Best Technogym
Our Mission: spreading the Wellness Lifestyle Engaging physical activity, correct nutrition and a positive mindset: the more people we inspire to make these a habit, the better the quality of life in the planet. We call it Wellness: help us spread the word... READ MORE
Claudia Jepsen This Old House
This Old House is the number one multi-platform home enthusiast brand, serving over 33 million consumers each month with trusted information and expert advice through its EMMY award-winning television shows This Old House and Ask This Old House on PBS (started airing 1979), its highly regarded This Old House magazine and its inspiration and information-driven digital properties, including Webby Award-winning thisoldhouse.com ... READ MORE
Welcome to our affiliates:
Chris Tallcouch Matt Picarazzi
D & D Homes, LLC Everest Marble
Huber Engineered Woods
Superior Hearth Spas & Leisure
Tooher-Ferraris Insurance Group
HBRA MEMBER NEWS Digital Marketing Bootcamp Suzanne Stillwell of Jade Marketing and Christa Magistrale, Senior Digital Marketing Analyst at Hearst Media led a very informative presentation on SEO, SEM, google ad words, social media, and best digital marketing practices. Thanks to all the builder and associate members who joined us and especially Kevin Polcer, who joined at the seminar and is our newest builder member.
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HBRA RESOURCE The 2019 HBRA Membership Directory & Resource Guide The HBRA Directory is created each year to provide members with a resource to identify and contact other HBRA members. The Membership Directory is available year-round digitally and in print. To view the newest members who have joined the association since the directoryâ€™s publication, and throughout the year, please visit the Member Directory on our website, www.buildfairfieldcounty.com. The printed directory is available digitally in a flip book here. If you just joined the association and did not receive a directory by mail, we will have them available at all of our upcoming events or feel free to stop by.
Click here to watch a video showing you how to find members in our online directory.
APRIL 2019 | HBRA of Fairfield County 19
HBRA MEMBER NEWS Shelton’s DiMatteo Insurance partners with Cross Insurance DiMatteo Insurance of Shelton is now affiliated with Cross Insurance, one of the largest independent insurance providers in the country. Headquartered in Bangor, Me., branch manager Kim DiMatteo of Bethany said this new partnership enables DiMatteo Insurance to broaden its market opportunities, including expanded personal and commercial lines in New England and throughout the country. Kim DiMatteo started working in the family insurance business in 1991 and specializes in commercial insurance, specifically construction, contractors and real estate. Read More
HBRA Members Support DiMatteo Easter Basket Drive For Local Homeless Shelter
New England Home Magazine Announces the 2019 5 Under 40 Award Winners New England Home was pleased to announce the 2019 5 Under 40 award winners on Thursday evening, Congratulations to Cheryl Russ, Glengate Company, Wilton, CT “Cheryl Russ, a registered Landscape Architect at Glengate Company, was announced as one of New England Home magazine’s 2019 5 Under 40 award winners on Thursday, April 11th, at the tenth annual Champagne Reception held at presenting sponsor Landry & Arcari’s Boston showroom. Now in its tenth year, the 5 Under 40 awards spotlight the hottest emerging talent in high-end residential design in New England, including architecture, interior design, landscape design and product design. Cheryl creates outdoor environments, inspired by her client’s lifestyle, their home’s architecture and interiors, and the existing surrounding environment. Cheryl’s approach to design is thoughtful, and her ability to make strong relationships results in environments that are truly meaningful for the clientele that she works with.”
20 HBRA of Fairfield County | APRIL 2019
BUILDER NEWS Millennials Want To Move To These Metros And After Decades Of Pushing Bachelor’s Here’s Why Ask a Millennial which is the most mobile generation of young adults in Degrees, U.S. Needs history, and odds are pretty good they’ll tell you it’s their cohort, ones More Tradespeople born roughly within the years 1980 to 2000, give or take.
At a steel factory dwarfed by the REMODELING? adjacent Auto Club Speedway,
And he or she--although more likely to be higher educated, technologically untethered, and capable of living a “distributed worker” lifestyle just about anywhere in the country--would be wrong to reach that conclusion.
Fernando Esparza is working DONATE FOR toward his nextREUSE! promotion.
Esparza is a 46-year-old mechanic for Evolution Fresh, a subsidiary of Starbucks that makes juices and smoothies. He’s taking a class in industrial computing taught by One day, it will be fascinating to look back on this massive 70-something a community college at a local million cohort of people over 20 and nearing 40, and really know how--if manufacturing plant in the hope it at all--their behaviors differ from the rest of us generations that came of will bump up his wages. age when we did, with attitudes, preferences, and beliefs that change Read More and with values that stay constant through the millennia. We’ve actually heard that conversational exchange, a young man asserting as obvious fact that people in their 20s and 30s now are far more likely to move from home to home and place to place than ever because they can. And as sure of himself as he was, he was wrong.
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APRIL 2019 | HBRA of Fairfield County 21
BUILDER NEWS Report: More than 300 bridges in CT ‘structurally deficient’ Washington – The nation’s bridges are deteriorating, but in Connecticut they are in better shape than they were four years ago, according to a report released Monday. The American Road & Transportation Builders Association’s assessment of the condition of the nation’s bridges in 2018 found that of the 4,270 bridges in the state, 308 — or 7.2 percent — were classified as structurally deficient. This is down from 376 bridges classified as structurally deficient in 2014, the report said. Nationally, however, the report said the pace of bridge repair slowed to its lowest point in five years in 2018. It also said that if America’s structurally deficient bridges were placed end-to-end, the result would span nearly 1,100 miles, the distance between Chicago and Houston. The report was released in the midst of a debate in Connecticut over the imposition of tolls to help pay for an overhaul of the state’s aging, overused infrastructure. It ranks Connecticut 26th in the nation in the percentage of structurally deficient bridges, and 38th in the nation in the percentage of those bridges needing repair. Read More
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How to Attract Millennial Home Buyers Millennials are the largest generation at approximately 79 million strong — surpassing baby boomers by about 4 million. Of those 79 million, 52% are contemplating homeownership, while 37% prefer the flexibility of renting. So how can builders attract more millennials into purchasing a home? Read More
How These Women Are Raising The Bar On Diversity In Construction
Construction Needs Younger Workers
Women’s participation in the construction industry is invaluable and on the rise. Though sometimes faced with an uphill climb, many women are dismissing the status quo, avidly fostering growth in both their companies and the broader industry. Meanwhile, they’re making the case to young women exploring construction careers that their talents are not only welcomed, but essential.
Baby boomers make up a large portion of current construction workers, but the industry is worried about the labor deficit that will occur when they retire. In an effort to attract younger talent, construction companies Construction Dive is joining the National Association of Women in are now using virtual reality Construction in celebrating Women in Construction Week 2019, March simulators during job training 3-9, by spotlighting five women leaders who are moving the needle on to entice those who grew up on diversity in the industry video games. Companies like CM From the field to the office, they are making indispensable contributions Lab Simulations and Caterpillar to their teams and projects, and creating space for diverse individuals to Inc. are leading these efforts to deepen their expertise, grow in their careers and better the AEC sector appeal to the next generation in without limitation. a time when young people are Read More discouraged from pursuing trades. Read More
IT’S NOT A TREND. IT’S A REVOLUTION. Visit ZIPRevolution.com to learn how easy it is to make the switch.
© 2017-2019 Huber Engineered Woods LLC. ZIP System, the accompanying ZIP System logo and design are trademarks of Huber Engineered Woods LLC. Huber Engineered Woods’ ZIP System® products are covered by various patents. Please see ZIPSystem.com/patents for details. HUB 81860 REV 1/19
APRIL 2019 | HBRA of Fairfield County 23
NAHB NEWS NAHB Resources Available to Help Navigate Opportunity Zones
Video: NAHB Chairman Updates Members on Key Priorities In the latest installment of his monthly video series, NAHB Chairman Greg Ugalde outlines two recent examples of NAHB working hard for its members: his testimony on Capitol Hill on GSE reform, and the NAHB Housing Portal which can save members thousands in survey research to help their businesses. This monthly video series will highlight how the association is addressing key issues impacting members and delivering results that make a difference to their businesses’ bottom lines. View all of the videos in the series at nahb.org/chairmans-update, and watch the latest one above:
Opportunities to earn CGR, CGB or GMB with Live Online Courses NAHB is offering courses for members who need to complete their CGR, CGB, or GMB designations. • Business Accounting and Job Costing (April 9, 16, 23) • Construction Contracts and Law (May 7, 14, 21) • Project Management (June 4, 11, 18) Registration links can be found here.
Established as part of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, opportunity zones provide tax incentives for investors with capital gains to invest in underserved areas affected by poverty and unemployment. More than 8,700 zones, or approximately 11% of all Census tracts in the United States, have been identified for investment, and the federal government is now working to coordinate other federal initiatives with the opportunity zone program, according to HUD Secretary Ben Carson. Carson shared with the NAHB board of directors last month at the International Builders’ Show (IBS): “The primary source for opportunity zone investment comes from the estimated $2.2 trillion of unrealized capital gains in stocks and mutual funds held by corporations and individuals. That’s one reason the Department of Treasury estimates that opportunity zone enterprises may attract more than $100 billion in private investment.” To maximize the tax benefits, investors must keep their capital invested for periods of five, seven or 10 years. Carson pointed out the intent of this program is to promote long-term investment and avoid rewarding “fly-by-night speculators.” However, as a new tax incentive, many building industry members are still unclear on how to take advantage of this incentive. Read More
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First-Time Home Buyers Battle Rising Prices, Seek Better Homes
Top 10 Home Features Baby Boomers Want — and Don’t Want
As the housing industry celebrates New Homes Month in April, recent data from the American Housing Survey (AHS) confirms nearly twothirds of first-time home buyers say a better home is the top reason for moving, followed by household formation, 61 percent and a better neighborhood, 49 percent. First-time home buyers make up 37 percent of all households who purchased homes in the two years preceding the release of the 2017 AHS, down from 39 percent in the 2015 AHS. The median price of homes purchased by recent home buyers, including first-time buyers and previous home owners, known as trade-up buyers, increased by 10 percent from the 2015 AHS. “First-time home buyers are eager to move to better homes and neighborhoods, yet home prices remain a challenge,” said National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Chairman Greg Ugalde, a builder and developer from Torrington, Conn. “Public policies and incentives that support home affordability can help buyers find a home that fits their lifestyle and family.”
Much like the average home buyer, buyers in the baby boomer generation like laundry rooms and energy efficiency, and dislike elevators and wine cellars. Baby boomers, however, tend to have stronger opinions about what they do and do not want in their homes, as indicated in NAHB’s recent update on What Home Buyers Really Want. Read More
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APRIL 2019 | HBRA of Fairfield County 25
NAHB NEWS Builder Confidence Edges Higher in April Builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes rose one point to 63 in April, according to the latest National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) released today. Sentiment levels have held in the low 60s for the past three months. “Builders report solid demand for new single-family homes but they are also grappling with affordability concerns stemming from a chronic shortage of construction workers and buildable lots,” said NAHB Chairman Greg Ugalde, a home builder and developer from Torrington, Conn. “Ongoing job growth, favorable demographics and a low-interest rate environment will help to modestly spark sales growth in the near term,” said NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz. “However, supply-side headwinds that are putting upward pressure on housing costs will limit more robust growth in the housing market.” Derived from a monthly survey that NAHB has been conducting for 30 years, the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index gauges builder perceptions of current single-family home sales and sales expectations for the next six months as “good,” “fair” or “poor.” The survey also asks builders to rate traffic of prospective buyers as “high to very high,” “average” or “low to very low.” Scores for each component are then used to calculate a seasonally adjusted index where any number over 50 indicates that more builders view conditions as good than poor. The HMI index gauging current sales conditions increased one point to 69, and the component measuring traffic of prospective buyers rose three points to 47. The measure charting sales expectations in the next six months fell one point to 71. Looking at the three-month moving averages for regional HMI scores, the Northeast posted a three-point gain to 51, the Midwest increased two points to 53, and the South was up one point to 67. The West remained unchanged at 69. Editor’s Note: The NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index is strictly the product of NAHB Economics, and is not seen or influenced by any outside party prior to being released to the public. HMI tables can be found at nahb.org/hmi. More information on housing statistics is also available at housingeconomics.com. Read More
Bedrooms, Kitchens Consume Copious Space in New Homes In the average new home, 28.0 percent of the finished floor space is allocated to bedrooms and 11.2 percent to the kitchen area, according to a recent NAHB study. The study is based on special questions appended to the November 2018 survey for the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index. The questions covered 13 specific types of areas or rooms, plus a catch-all “other” category for any types not on the list. In addition to an average breakdown for all new homes, the study also looked separately at small homes (those with under 2,000 square feet of finished floor space) and large homes (with at least 3,500 square feet). The share of space allocated to many of the areas listed in the survey varies only slightly with overall home size. The dining area, for example, accounts for close to 6 percent of the finished floor space in both large and small new homes. On a percentage-point basis, the living room or area shows the greatest spread, accounting for 10.0 percent of the space in small new homes compared to only 4.4 percent in the large ones. The master bedroom accounts for a larger share of the space in small new homes than in large ones (13.1 vs. 9.2 percent). Other bedrooms (those not part of a master suite), however, account for roughly 17 percent of the finished floor space irrespective of house size. Read More
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New Report from NAHB and ICC Focuses on Code Compliance Issues The International Code Council and NAHB recently released a new report designed to help builders improve the safety and satisfaction of their customers. The “2019 Common Code Noncompliance Report” highlights for builders and remodelers the items code officials are most likely to flag in inspections and plan reviews during the construction process. This information, developed from a survey of U.S. code officials, should prove valuable in helping builders and remodelers focus more intently on these potential problem areas before and during construction. The survey found: Technology has made some inroads into the development, review and issuance of construction plans. Code officials identify workers ignoring the manufacturer’s installation instructions as the greatest cause of code violations. There is an indication of a rising trend in new home code violations on apartments, townhouses, condominiums and custom high-end homes. Read More
NAHB Podcast Offers New Insights on Housing Economics On this week’s episode of Housing Developments, NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz shares his 2019 economic forecast for the industry and what the recent change in the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index means for builders. Dietz also discusses how the skilled labor shortage is affecting housing supply. NAHB CEO Jerry Howard and guest host Paul Lopez, VP of Communications & Public Affairs, also discuss what the recent confirmation of Mark Calabria as director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency means for builders Read More
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APRIL 2019 | HBRA of Fairfield County 27
NAHB NEWS OSHA’s Use of Drones: What Builders Need to Know
New Homes Month Toolkit
Over the last several years, the use of Unmanned Aircraft Systems — commonly called drones — has grown exponentially. It is predicted that by the year 2021 commercial drone use in the United States will expand tenfold. Drone use is regulated principally by the Federal Aviation Administration, which has registration requirements and sets operational rules to ensure safe operation.
New Homes Month in April is the perfect opportunity to highlight the benefits of purchasing a new home. NAHB has prepared a toolkit to help you target potential home buyers with messages of quality construction, location, new home amenities and more that will entice consumers to consider purchasing a new home as the spring home tour season kicks off.
With the emergence of wider drone use, OSHA has also stepped into the drone business, allowing the use of drones during worksite inspections for compliance assistance and for training purposes. The potential for OSHA to use drones in enforcement activities has raised concerns from home builders and other contractors. On May 18, 2018, in a memorandum to Regional Administrators, OSHA set forth its policy related to the use of drones during inspections. The Agency stated: “[Drones] may be used to collect evidence during inspections in certain workplace settings, including in areas that are inaccessible or pose a safety risk to inspection personnel.”
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28 HBRA of Fairfield County | APRIL 2019
Connecticut Home Builders & Remodelers Program
AN INSURANCE PROGRAM CUSTOM DESIGNED FOR YOUR BUSINESS Acadia Insurance is proud to be the endorsed property and casualty insurance carrier for the Home Builders and Remodelers Association of Connecticut. As a leading provider of insurance for contractors throughout New England, Acadia Insurance understands the insurance and service needs of contractors from small to large. With a local office in Rocky Hill, Acadia Insurance has professionals that handle underwriting, claim, loss control and premium audit for its Connecticut customers. Acadia is working with a select number of its Independent Agents in offering this program to Connecticut’s Home Builders and Remodelers.
The Right Policy for Your Business Acadia Insurance offers qualifying contractors a full array of necessary coverages including property, general liability, workers’ compensation, business automobile and umbrella. In addition, we can provide builders’ risk coverage, installation floater and equipment coverage.
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• Coverage for newly acquired property
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✓ Acadia Insurance can craft the coverage you need to operate your business. For a full listing of coverages and how they apply to an individual home builder, please see an Acadia Insurance agent who is equipped to analyze your current insurance program and provide you with recommendations.
APRIL 2019 | HBRA of Fairfield County 29
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LEGISLATIVE UPDATE FROM THE STATE CEO
Building Industry Day at the Capitol 2019
Each year Home Building Industry Day at the Capitol is an opportunity for home builders and others in the industry to visit the Capitol and speak to legislators about the major issues of the day. Organized by the Home Builders Association of Connecticut, the day includes a breakfast and issue briefing followed by meetings with legislators. Greg Ugalde, a CT Builder and Chairman of the National Association of Home Builders also spoke at the breakfast with an update on the national level. Members of the HBRA of Fairfield County who joined us at the Capitol include Anthony DeRosa of DeRosa Builders, Pete Fusaro of Preferred Builders Inc, Steve LoParco of LoParco Associates, Debra Wolfenson from Superior Hearth Spas & Leisure, Joanne Carroll of JMC Resources, Pete Battaglio from Hocon, Terrence Beaty from William Pitt Sothebyâ€™s, Frank Festini & Mark Bordonaro of Southport Construction and GoTasker. Thanks to all who participated on behalf of the association and industry!
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STATE LEGISLATIVE NEWS
Priority List of Bills Support HB 6749, to update our zoning statutes and provide accountability for fair and affordable housing. This bill will enable zoning commissions and lay people to more easily understand the requirements of section 8-2 of the general statutes and provide administrative mechanism to promote municipal compliance with affordable housing obligations. In addition, this bill affirmatively furthers fair housing and should allow for more multifamily housing and affordable housing in communities that have historically been reticent to allow this type of development. Support SB 904 and SB 603, to establish a first-time homebuyer savings account program and tax deduction. These bills would require the Commissioner of Revenue Services to establish a firsttime homebuyer savings account program and establish a tax deduction for 32 HBRA of Fairfield County | APRIL 2019
contributions to first- time homebuyer savings accounts. The Connecticut residential construction industry has been producing new units at recession levels since 2008. Any effort to stimulate this sector of the economy while encouraging young families to stay in Connecticut would provide immediate benefits to Connecticut’s economy and be a sound investment in Connecticut’s future. Support SB 274, to active the “Live Here, Work Here” program. This bill would allow recent graduates to set aside portions of their state income tax payments for the purpose of a down payment on a first time home purchase. Oppose section 5 of HB 7410 and section 22 of SB 877, both of which would expand sales taxes to include services such as residential repairs and renovations. Please exempt services to residential properties from any expansion of the sales tax. If passed, these bills would unfairly impact registered home improvement contractors by driving more homeowners to the underground market. With less equity in homes due to a lack of recovery from the 2008 market drop repairs and remodels will be delayed, further depressing home values and placing greater strain on our aging housing stocks.
Oppose FMLA bills SB 1, SB 881 and HB 5003 Please exempt small businesses from FMLA mandates. Should any of these bills become law, we ask that final product exempts small business, adequately protects against fraud, and does not offer 100% wage replacement to ensure that the program is completely self-sustaining with employee contributions Oppose HB 7151 which authorizes DEEP to inspect new construction to ensure approved energy efficient products are used. Please delete lines 870874 of this bill which would require DEEP to conduct additional inspections of newly constructed buildings to verify compliance with the provisions found in this bill as a prerequisite to the issuance of a C.O. Additional inspection requirements by an underfunded and understaffed state agency will cause undue delays requiring builders to pay more in properties tax. Additional costs will be absorbed by struggling small businesses or passed on to consumers, further exacerbating affordability issues. Reach out to your legislator and express your thoughts: Click here to find your legislator Click here to follow along with our legislative alerts
CTR.tv presents 5 in 5 - 4/1/19 NERC Conference Coming to CT (0:15) State Budget Talks Continue – Sign up for CTR Texts (0:59)
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APRIL 2019 | HBRA of Fairfield County 33
H B RA E V E N TS
Planning Principles By: Dr. Donald E. Wetmore
The old adage reminds us that “People don’t plan to fail but a lot of people do fail to plan.” During a war, we find a tank operator and a general. Which function is more important? It is probably the general, at least in this sense. One can be the best tank operator on the line, get out there everyday and shoot off more rounds of ammunition and shoot them more accurately than anyone else on the line, but if he is not shooting at a target that makes any sense, then his whole day is wasted. The general, through advanced planning, decides where the tank operator ought to go and thereby increases his “productivity”. A lot of people run their days like a tank operator without a general. Awake in the morning, get dressed, off to work, grab the first fire hose someone throws their way, get caught up addressing the demands coming from the loudest voices shouting in their direction, come home at night, sometimes beat and exhausted, get rested, get up the next morning and repeat the cycle. That is living life by accident. I encourage people to live their lives on purpose. I want each of us to be a general. And there’s a war out there in that either you are in control of your time or someone else is. And the best way for us to be a general and in control of our own time is doing effective Daily Planning every day. Here’s five simple Planning Principles to help maximize your Daily Planning 1.Do your planning the night before. I try to set aside time each night for Daily Planning. I’ve wound down from the workday and I am less pressured. The major benefit, however, it that by having a plan of action completed the night before, we go to bed with a sense of certainty and control about our next day and with a sense of anticipation we would not ordinarily have. After getting into the habit of accomplishing our Daily Planning each night, the quality of our sleep will be enhanced because we have established a plan each night that gives us the roadmap or game plan for the next day eliminating the need to wrestle with all the loose ends in our heads during our sleeping hours, interfering with the quality of our sleep. tend to slip through the cracks.
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DEAR SALES COACH Dear Sales Coach, Our remodeling company has skilled sales people who know how to disqualify prospects. But by the time they get to discussing the final contract, they get so focused on closing the deal that they end up giving buyers more concessions than they had planned on. Do we just accept that we have to discount in order to get the business? ~ Toby B. Dear Toby, I understand how frustrating it is for you and your sales people to feel like they are forced to discount. By thinking of contract negotiations as a step in a long partnership, your sales people can learn to push for win-win outcomes. If a homeowner or buyer objects to a term in the contract, don’t treat it as an attack. More likely, it’s a sign of mismatched expectations. In these cases, you’ll both have to communicate what’s most important to you, and where you’re willing to compromise. Instead of bending to whatever the prospect asks for, work together on what’s best for both of you. Weigh your priorities so you’re not compromising the value of your product, and they feel that they’re getting a fair deal. Effective negotiating will give you and your buyer a chance to resolve any final differences, and feel confident you’re investing in a partnership. -Ed
Ed began Sandler/PEAK with focus on medium and small size firms to Corporate organizations who must lift their Management and Sales competency to Win, improve their ability to lead others to change their future, and position themselves as the Trusted Advisor to their Clients above all others. Have a sales question? Email Ed at email@example.com.
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MEMBER DISCOUNTS & REBATES
Ticket Monster Benefit NAHB is offering exclusive, members-only access to shows, concerts, ski resorts, rental cars and a variety of other experiences. Click here to see all of the details.
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