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May, 2013

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THE

NAIL The ofďŹ cial magazine of Home Builders Association of Middle Tennessee President James Franks Vice President Michael Dillon Secretary/Treasurer Trey Lewis Executive Vice President John Sheley Editor and Designer Jim Argo Staff Connie Nicley Pat Newsome

THE NAIL is published monthly by the Home Builders Association of Middle Tennessee, a non-profit trade association dedicated to promoting the American dream of homeownership to all residents ofMiddle Tennessee. SUBMISSIONS: THE NAIL welcomes manuscripts and photos related to the Middle Tennessee housing industry for publication. Editor reserves the right to edit due to content and space limitations. POSTMASTER: Please send address changes to: HBAMT, 9007 Overlook Boulevard, Brentwood, TN 37027. Phone: (615) 377-1055.

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FEATURES 6 May is National Remodeling Month! If you’ve been planning a remodeling job at your home this is the month to finally get started!

8 2013 Fishing Tournaments off to a fast start HBAMT’s top fishermen got 2013’s Piedmont Natural Gas fishing tournaments off to a strong start at Four Corners Marina.

DEPARTMENTS 4 News & Information 13 SPIKE Club Report 14 May Calendar 14 Chapters and Councils

ON THE COVER: May is National Home Remodeling Month. Learn more about tackling your next home project on page six (6) of this issue. May, 2013

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NEWS&INFO

Stefan Peter-Contesse (standing) and Nathan Terry of E3 Innovate delivered a presentation titled “The Battle of the Sealed Crawlspace in the Southeast” at the Green Building Council’s April meeting. Special thanks to E3 Innovate for sponsoring the meeting.

New home sales rise 1.5 percent in March

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ales of newly built, single-family homes rose 1.5 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 417,000 units in March, according to newly released figures from HUD and the U.S. Census Bureau. “This is the second-best sales number we’ve seen since early 2010, and a good sign of the continued, gradual headway that our industry is making toward recovery as more buyers jump off the fence in time to take advantage of today’s low interest rates and prices,” said Rick Judson, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and a home builder from Charlotte, N.C.

This is the second-best sales number seen since 2010 and a good sign of the headway our industry is making toward recovery. 4 The NAIL

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“The latest sales report is right in line with our forecast for continued, modest increases in home prices and sales through 2013,” said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. “At this point, we are about half-way back to what would be considered a ‘normal’ level of sales activity as challenges related to supplies of credit, building materials, lots and labor are slowing the pace at which builders can build and sell new homes.” Regionally, new-home sales activity was mixed in March, with the Northeast and South posting double-digit increases and the Midwest and West posting corresponding declines. Sales gained 20.6 percent in the Northeast and 19.4 percent in the South, while falling 12.1 percent in the Midwest and 20.9 percent in the West. The inventory of new homes for sale held virtually unchanged at just 151,000 units in March, which amounts to a 4.4-month supply at the current sales pace.

Metro/Nashville Chapter President John Whitaker (left) welcomed Metro Planning Director Rick Bernhardt to the chapter’s April meeting at the HBAMT. Bernhardt discussed “Nashville Next,” an update of the 25-year plan for the growth and development of Nashville.

Secretary/Treasurer and Membership Committee Chairman Trey Lewis (standing) welcomes new members to the association during the latest orientation at the HBAMT offices.


Housing recovery continues but headwinds remain

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uoyed by rising home prices throughout much of the nation, both single-family and multifamily housing starts are expected to post double-digit gains over last year in 2013. However, headwinds continue to hold back even stronger growth as the housing recovery evolves, according to economists at NAHB’s Spring 2013 Construction Forecast Conference Webinar. “The broadening housing expansion is evidenced by the NAHB/First American Improving Markets Index, which now lists 273 metros areas out of a universe of 361, or three-quarters of the metropolitan areas in the U.S.,” said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. The recent surge is almost all due to improvements in house prices across a broader number of markets, he added. Home price increases became more solid and consistent in 2012, and the latest data shows a nearly 6 percent annual rate of home price appreciation on a national basis. Growth in the housing sector is rising at a much faster pace than the overall economy during this phase of the recovery, Crowe add-

ed. The residential fixed investment component of GDP was up 17.5 percent in the fourth quarter of 2012 whereas total economic output only registered a 0.4 percent gain. As demand for housing gradually picks up steam, supply chains for building materials, developed lots and skilled workers will take some time to re-establish themselves in the aftermath of the Great Recession. Meanwhile, builders are feeling pinched by rising costs of key building components (prices of gypsum, softwood lumber and concrete are all above 90 percent of their housing boom peak), which is causing home construction costs to rise at a faster pace than appraised values, Crowe said. Moreover, ongoing difficulties in obtaining construction credit, overly restrictive mortgage lending rules and uncertainty in Washington regarding the future of housing financial regulations and housing tax incentives, including the mortgage interest deduction and Low Income Housing Tax Credit, threaten to dampen consumer confidence and future housing demand. Setting the 2000 to 2003 period before the

Rising costs put squeeze on builder confidence in April

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acing increasing costs for building materials and rising concerns about the supply of developed lots and labor, builders registered less confidence in the market for newly built, single-family homes in April, with a twopoint drop to 42 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI), released today. “Many builders are expressing frustration over being unable to respond to the rising demand for new homes due to difficulties in obtaining construction credit, overly restrictive mortgage lending rules and construction costs that are increasing at a faster pace than appraised values,” said Rick Judson, NAHB Chairman. “While sales conditions are generally improving, these challenges are holding back new building and job creation.” “Supply chains for building materials, developed lots and skilled workers will take some time to re-establish themselves following the recession, and in the meantime builders are feeling squeezed by higher costs and limited

availability issues,” explained NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. “That said, builders’ outlook for the next six months has improved due to the low inventory of for-sale homes,

rock bottom mortgage rates and rising consumer confidence.” Derived from a monthly survey that NAHB has been conducting for 25 years, the NAHB/ Wells Fargo Housing Market Index gauges builder perceptions of current single-family

housing boom as a time of normal residential building production, Crowe said that residential remodeling has returned to previously normal levels of the early 2000s and that remodeling activity is expected to register a 2.2 percent gain this year over 2012. Meanwhile, NAHB’s Multifamily Production Index, a leading indicator for the multifamily market, has jumped 38 points in the past four years and now stands at 54. For the past three quarters, the index has been above the critical tipping point of 50, where a reading of 50 means that an equal number of builders view conditions in the multifamily market as good and bad. Multifamily starts are expected to rise to 334,000 units in 2013, up 35 percent from last year’s 247,000 level, bringing production back to the baseline level that is needed to keep the supply in balance with demand. Multifamily starts are anticipated to rise an additional 5 percent next year to 349,000 units. The single-family market, which must make up the most ground to return to its 20002003 level of normal production (1.3 million units), continues to make steady gains. NAHB is forecasting 672,000 single-family housing starts in 2013, up 23 percent from the 534,000 units recorded last year. Single-family production is expected to rise an additional 28 percent in 2014, (continued on page eleven)

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. While the HMI component gauging current sales conditions declined two points to 45 and the component gauging buyer traffic declined four points to 30 in April, the component gauging sales expectations in the next six months posted a three-point gain to 53 – its highest level since February of 2007. Looking at three-month moving averages for regional HMI scores, the Northeast was unchanged at 38 in April while the Midwest registered a two-point decline to 45, the South registered a four-point decline to 42 and the West posted a three-point decline to 55. 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. n May, 2013

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Weigh options before doing it yourself this May

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he home building industry celebrates National Remodeling Month in May, but remodeling is popular year-round, and the industry is growing every year. According to HUD and the U.S. Census Bureau, home owner do-it-yourself (DIY) projects accounted for 37 percent of all home remodeling projects performed nationwide from 2010-2011. While most professional remodelers understand that home owners will do some of their own home repairs or small renovations, after repairing many a DIY gone awry they overwhelmingly believe that many jobs should be left to the pros. The desire among home owners to tackle repair and remodeling projects has risen with the popularity of Pinterest and design blogs and the prevalence of home improvement stores. Before attempting to recreate the gorgeous bathroom from your Pinterest board in your own home, consider the following before sinking your resources into the project.

Safety Without the proper training and preparation, a DIYer can and has landed in the emergency room. Unfamiliarity with new tools and techniques can lead to life-threatening accidents. Follow product directions and safety procedures and always use proper safety equipment. A good rule of thumb for any home owner is to avoid projects that require a license. Veteran remodelers advise against doing electrical or plumbing work on your own and avoid making structural changes to walls, roofs and floors. You run the risk of compromising the structural integrity of your home and having a large hole in your roof or floor. Leave this work in the hands of professionals with the proper training. Even projects that appear simple like laying floor tile can result in you stubbing your toes every time you are in that room if improperly installed. Time DIYers often tackle larger projects than they can handle before the holidays so that visiting family can enjoy the updates. But when something goes wrong, there is no one to hold to the deadline. Hiring a professional will ensure that you have a contract with a completion date and that the remodeler will bring in whatever help is necessary to get the job finished on time. Even professional remodelers sometimes need extra time on projects when they find surprises behind walls. Troubleshooting these 6 The NAIL

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issues often takes more time and expertise than originally planned. If timing is a priority for your weekend warrior, call a professional remodeler to get your project completed. Cost Purchasing new tools is exciting but consider the price of all the specialty tools used for a one-time project when they are sitting untouched in your garage for a few years. Additionally, many of the products purchased for the DIY market, although designated by a name brand, are not always the same quality available to contractors. It is also important to verify the terms of the product warranty. Many warranties become void by improper installation. Robert Criner, GMR, CAPS, CGP of Criner Remodeling in Yorktown, Va. cautions all motivated DIYers, “Does it really pay to do the job twice when you can pay a professional to do it once?”

There are some home projects that professional remodelers believe can be tackled by determined DIYers such as hanging pictures, interior painting, caulking, changing door knobs and cabinet pulls, and some aesthetic work (depending on skill level) such as installing crown molding. Just consider the safety risks, time and cost involved in a DIY project of any size. Still think you can tackle a big remodeling project? Just remember, DIY projects should be fun and suit your skill level. If they’re not, then consider hiring a professional. For information about hiring a remodeler, contact the Home Builders Association of Middle Tennessee (HBAMT) at (615) 3771055, or go to www.hbamt.org. Search the Directory of Professional Remodelers (www. nahb.org/remodelerdirectory) to find a professional remodeler in your area. Visit www. nahb.org/remodel for more information on remodeling. n

Top 5 remodeling projects

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ome owners considering planning to stay in their home should know about remodeling projects that increase the home’s usefulness and make it better to live in. A 2012 National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) survey of remodelers found the following five most common remodeling jobs. Housing market data reveals that small, smart remodels reward home owners with better return on investment and can help update and customize a home. Review these top five remodeling projects and begin planning to remodel during National Home Remodeling Month. 1.Remodel the bathroom Payback on remodeling a bathroom can reach 65 percent with new fixtures, tile, toilet, vanity and lighting. Low flow toilets consumer less water and can decrease the monthly water bill. 2. Remodel the kitchen A minor kitchen remodel can improve the look and utility of the space without costing a bundle, and yields a 75 percent return. Consider replacing backsplashes, cabinet fronts, countertops, and flooring. Installing low-flow faucets and energy-efficient appliances can also reduce water and energy expenses in a heavily trafficked room. 3. Replace windows and doors Updating windows can also return a solid

portion of the investment (73 percent for wood frames and 71 percent for vinyl). New, energy-efficient doors and windows also help reduce energy leakage from the home and can bring down heating and cooling bills. 4. Repair property damage Property damage is a common but unfortunate occurrence. Seize misfortune as an opportunity to customize and upgrade the home. If you are already going to be inconvenienced with major home repairs, take that time to plan and incorporate home remodeling that may have been put off in the past. 5. Whole house remodeling Repairs and replacements of old components and the desire for upgraded amenities were cited as the top reasons for customers to hire a remodeler. Evaluate the use of the entire home to see if it fits your needs. Home owners are repurposing spaces to fit their families and making more efficient use of their home’s square footage and equity, rather than moving to a new home and mortgage. Smart remodeling projects for improving the home can make the home more comfortable for your lifestyle. For more information about remodeling, visit www.nahb.org/remodel. n


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Nathan Vaughn (left) and Trey Bain (right) took home first place honors for the Benchmark Construction boat.

Top anglers cast away! First Piedmont Natural Gas Fishing Tournament of 2013 held at Four Corners Marina.

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BAMT’s first Piedmont Natural Gas Fishing Tournament of the year was held April 23 at Four Corners Marina. The return of the popular annual event drew over 40 fishermen to Percy Priest Lake to compete for the top score of the day. Benchmark Construction’s Trey Bain and Nathan Vaughn started the year strong with a first place finish. Bain and Vaughn reeled in 14.66 lbs worth of catches. Jim Ford and Mike Williams weighed in with 14.57 lbs worth of catches to earn second place honors for the Triton Stone boat. The duo also took home the “Big Fish” award for a catch tipping the scales at 6.80 lbs. And John Bornstein and David Gnewikow reeled in 14.24 lbs worth of catches to secure third place honors. Next stop: Tues, May 21 at Bull Creek Marina. Registration form on page thirteen. n 8 The NAIL

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Company Boat

Fisherman

Wt.

Benchmark Construction

Trey Bain & Nathan Vaughn

14.66

Triton Stone

Jim Ford & Mike Williams

14.57

McKenzie Construction

John Bornstein & David Gnewikow

14.24

CPS Land, LLC

Danny Hankins & Mark Snead

14.20

Greater Dickson Gas

Jack Nichols & Michael Story

12.72

American Heating & Cooling

Kevin Israel & Todd Spann

12.22

Chris Rogers Construction

Chris Rogers & Zach Taylor

12.03

Piedmont Natural Gas

Matt Brown & Tim Cunningham

11.72

Joe Haas Construction

Joe Haas & Rusty Rust

11.13

Beacon Technology

Karl Burr & Mylan Burr

11.06

Earhart, Inc.

Bobby Colson & Jody Earhart

10.47

Piedmont Natural Gas

Robert E. Lee & Shane Williams

8.24

Piedmont Natural Gas

Gerald Griffin & Carl O’Neal

6.75


Jim Ford (right) and Mike Williams (not shown) earned second place honors for the Triton Stone boat. Ford (at right with fish) and Williams also took home the “Big Fish� award for landing the biggest catch of the day.

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SPIKE REPORT

Seventeen SPIKES (in bold) increased their recruitment numbers last month. What is a SPIKE? SPIKES recruit new members and help the association retain members. Here is the latest SPIKE report as of March 31, 2013. Top 20 Big Spikes Jim Ford Virgil Ray Bill King Mitzi Spann Jim Fischer Terry Cobb John Whitaker James Carbine Dan Stern Jennifer Earnest Bruce Hancock Kevin Hale Tonya Jones Reese Smith III Steve Moody David Crane Sonny Shackelford Michael Apple Cyril Evers Jackson Downey

Life Spikes

910 817 776 638 566 563 329 326 306 300 297 285 271 256 219 211 210 185 181 173

(cont’d from page five) to 858,000 units.

Fed to the Rescue Taking a more bullish approach to the housing and economic recovery, Maury Harris, managing director and chief economist for the Americas for UBS, expects housing starts to total 1.1 million units this year (700,000 single-family and 400,000 multifamily) and 1.35 million units (900,000 single-family and 450,000 multifamily) in 2014. “My view is that monetary policy is more important than fiscal policy,” Harris said, noting that the sequester will cut about $85 billion in spending out of the economy this year while the Federal Reserve’s monetary expansion policy is pumping $85 billion into the economy every month. “As the Fed buys securities and pumps reserves into the banking system, this is easing lending standards and that will help job growth,” he added. Harris expects unemployment to fall to 7.5 percent at the end of this year and 6.7 percent at the end of 2014. With job formation a critical variable affecting household formation, Harris expects 1.1 million new households to form this year and an average of 1.3 million new household formations annually over the next three years. During the housing downturn, new household formations plummeted to 500,000 annually. As

Davis Lamb Jim McLean Louise Stark Harry Johnson Steve Cates C.W. Bartlett Tim Ferguson Tonya Alexander Steve Hewlett Tom Kelley Carmen Butner Johnny Watson Bill Kottas Lee Santiago Dave McGowan Kim Dykes B.J. Hanson Sam Carbine Duane Vanhook Trey Lewis Randy Parker Jordan Clark Erin Richardson James Franks Jeff Slusher John Baugh Don Bruce Jim Ford, Jr. Hill McAlister Joe Morgan Gerald Bucy John Broderick Beth Sturm Wiggs Thompson Al Davis Sheila Rawlings Bernie Laine Greg Langley

167 164 163 146 140 138 138 124 119 115 101 101 97 95 93 89 88 85 78 76 75 73 72 70 70 68 62 62 57 54 53 52 50 49 47 47 46 46

housing and the economy recover, there is a large pent-up demand for housing. Harris said that the household gap, which is the difference between potential and actual household formation, is about 2 percent of potential households or about 2 million. “The bottom line: we’re reasonably optimis-

tic about the economy,” Harris said. “The public doesn’t sufficiently appreciate all the good that the Fed is doing.” Conditions Vary by State Now that the boom and bust carnage is over, a major development on the housing front is that housing markets are reconnecting to their underlying economies, according to Robert Denk, NAHB’s assistant vice president for forecasting and analysis. “The housing market is now being driven by

Benny Sullivan Kim Nichols Bryan Edwards David Hughes Andrew Neuman Kay Russell Peggy Krebs Chuck Clarkson Lori Fisk-Conners Brad Butler Andy Wyatt Al Hacker David Lippe John Ganschow Ray Edwards Dan Strebel Steve Wheeley Alvin Basel Matt Burnett

46 45 44 44 44 44 39 36 36 35 35 34 34 33 32 32 30 29 25 Spikes

Christina Cunningham Jess Dillon Tracy Lomax Marty Maitland Frank Tyree Don Mahone Pam Smith Michael Dillon Don Alexander Kelvey Benward

17 16 14 12 10 10 9 8 7 7

local economic fundamentals,” said Denk. “Energy states and those driven by agricultural commodities are seeing their housing markets turn around the fastest.” California, Florida, Nevada and Arizona, which fell the farthest during the housing downturn, bottoming out at 10 to 20 percent of normal production, are showing progress in making a comeback. Home prices in many of these markets are returning to normal and near-normal levels, thanks in part to foreclosure rates that have eased significantly since hitting their peak in 2009. “While these former bubble states still have a long way to go to get back to normal, they have been replaced by the industrial Midwest, which is facing weakness in manufacturing, as the laggard in the recovery,” said Denk. Led by North Dakota, Texas, Oklahoma, Wyoming, Montana and Louisiana, the energy producing states are the first states projected to return to normal production levels by the end of next year, Denk said. Iowa, a farm belt state supported by agricultural commodities, is also approaching a faster return to normal conditions. In another way of looking at the long road back to normal, by the end of 2014, the top 20 percent of states will be at or above 87 percent of normal production, compared to the bottom 20 percent, which will still be below 60 percent. n May, 2013

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MAY CALENDAR Sunday

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

13

14

15

16

17

18

22

23

24

25

Remodelers Council meeting

21

20

19

Metro/Nashville, Williamson County Chapters meeting

Dickson County Chapter meeting

26

27

28

29

30

31

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

CHAPTERS & COUNCILS CHAPTERS CHEATHAM COUNTY CHAPTER Chapter President - Roy Miles: 615/646-3303 Cheatham County Chapter details are being planned. Next meeting: to be announced. Chapter RSVP Line: 615/377-9651, ext. 310 DICKSON COUNTY CHAPTER Chapter President - Mark Denney: 615/446-2873. The Dickson County Chapter meets on the third Monday of the month, 12:00 p.m. at the Ponderosa Restaurant in Dickson. Next meeting: Monday, May 20. Topic: Chris Curcio, 2014 candidate for the 69th seat. Price: FREE, lunch dutch treat. Chapter RSVP Line: 615/377-9651, ext. 307 MAURY COUNTY CHAPTER Maury County Chapter details are currently being planned. Next meeting: to be announced. Chapter RSVP line: 615-377-9651, ext. 312; for callers outside the 615 area code, 1-800-571-9995, ext. 312 METRO/NASHVILLE CHAPTER Chapter President - John Whitaker: 615/843-3300. The Metro/Nashville Chapter meets on the fourth Monday of the month, 11:30 a.m. at the HBAMT offices. Next meeting: Tuesday, May 21. Topic:”Restrictive Covenants and HOAs: The Non-Governmental Obstacles to Building,” with Steve A. Lund, attorney, Tune, Entrekin & White. Price*: to be announced. Chapter RSVP Line: 615/377-9651, ext. 304

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ROBERTSON COUNTY CHAPTER Next meeting: to be announced. Robertson County RSVP line: 615-377-9651, ext. 313.

a.m. at the HBAMT offices. Next meeting: to be announced. Council RSVP Line: 615/377-9651, ext. 311

SUMNER COUNTY CHAPTER The Sumner County Chapter meets on the fourth Tuesday of the month, 11:30 a.m. at the new Hendersonville Library. Next meeting: to be announced. Chapter RSVP Line: 615/377-9651, ext. 306

GREEN BUILDING COUNCIL Council President - Erin Richardson: 615/883-8526. The Green Building Council meets on the fourth Wednesday of the month, 11:00 a.m. Next meeting: Wednesday, May 22, at Pella Window and Door,1150 Antioch Pike, Nashville, 37211. Price: free for Green Building Council members thanks to our annual sponsors Pella Window & Door; $20 for non-members with RSVP ($25 w/o). Council RSVP Line: 615/377-9651, ext. 308

WILLIAMSON COUNTY CHAPTER Chapter President - BJ Hanson: 615/884-4935. The Williamson County Chapter meets on the third Tuesday of the month, 11:30 a.m. at the HBAMT offices. Next meeting: Tuesday, May 21. Topic: “Restrictive Covenants and HOAs: The Non-Governmental Obstacles to Building,” with Steve A. Lund, attorney, Tune, Entrekin & White. Price*: to be announced. Chapter RSVP Line: 615/377-9651, ext. 305 WILSON COUNTY CHAPTER The Wilson County Chapter meets on the second Thursday of the month, 11:30 a.m. at the Five Oaks Golf & Country Club in Lebanon. Next meeting: to be announced. Chapter RSVP Line: 615/377-9651, ext. 309 *Builders free pending sponsorship. COUNCILS CUSTOM BUILDERS COUNCIL The CBC meets on the second Tuesday of the month, 11:30

HBAMT REMODELERS COUNCIL Council President - Don Mahone. The HBAMT Remodelers Council meets on the third Wednesday of the month, 11:00 a.m. at varying locations. Next meeting: Wednesday, May 15. Location: to be announced. Price: free for RMC members with RSVP; $15 for non-members with RSVP ($20 w/o). Council RSVP Line: 615/377-9651, ext. 301 MIDDLE TENN SALES & MARKETING COUNCIL Council President - Trey Lewis. The SMC meets on the first Thursday of the month, 9:00 a.m. at the HBAMT offices. Next meeting: Thursday, June 6. Price: $15 for SMC members with RSVP ($20 w/o); $35 for nonmembers with RSVP ($40 w/o). Council RSVP Line: 615/377-9651, ext. 302. Mike Lyon event RSVP Line: 615/377-9651, ext. 303.


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The Nail, May, 2013