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Automation, Comfort, Security Building Todayâ€™s Smart Home Labor Challenges in the Granite State NHHBA Takes On the EPA PROFES S I ON ALS CO MMI T T E D TO E X C E L L E NC E
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In This Issue
VOLUME 8 • NUMBER 3
119 Airport Road • Concord, NH 03301 Phone: (603) 228-0351 Fax: (603) 228-1877 NHHBA.com • email@example.com
HomeBuilders A S S O C I A T I O N
NHHBA Officers PRESIDENT
Lynette Rogers FIRST VICE PRESIDENT
Joe Harnois TREASURER
Tricia Newhall Grahame VICE PRESIDENT/SECRETARY
ASSOCIATE VICE PRESIDENT
IMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT Paul Sullivan, cgp STATE REPRESENTATIVE (NAHB)
Greg Rehm, cgr, caps, cgp
NAHB NH BUILDER NATIONAL DIRECTOR
8 Automation, Comfort, Security
NAHB NH ASSOCIATE NATIONAL DIRECTOR
Building today’s smart house.
10 Labor Challenges in the Granite State A look at New Hampshire’s construction succession.
11 SNHHBRA Joins Forces With Students Entering the Trades 17 Membership Application Form Become a member and start enjoying the benefits.
Tricia Newhall Grahame Sharron McCarthy Paul Morin, CGB Rob Pickett, CGP Bill Burke Dianne D. Beaton CONTRIBUTORS
Paul L. Sullivan; Paul Morin Crystal Ward Kent; Catherine Schoenenberger
4 President’s Letter
A message from Paul L. Sullivan.
6 Government Affairs NHHBA takes on the EPA.
7 Senior Moves
Aging-in place remodeling, minor modifications gaining popularity.
12 Dollars and Sense
14 Business Profile
Builders Installed Products – an invaluable partner.
16 GSB Buzz
A look at our members as they get out and about in their communities.
20 The Finish Nail More war stories.
Housing index hits milestone but permits still lagging.
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President’s Letter BY PAUL L. SULLIVAN
une 1st will mark the start of the next president’s term for the New Hampshire Home Builders Association. Serving as your president for the last year has been an honor and a challenge. I’ve enjoyed getting out to local association meetings and events where I was able to get to know many members I had not met before. It was inspiring to see all of the excellent events and dedicated people working behind the scenes to make them happen so our members could enjoy the networking, education and representation they deserve. As I turn the gavel over to the next president, I feel confident that I am leaving NHHBA on much firmer ground than I found it. The executive committee, our hard working staff, and numerous dedicated members really stepped up over the past year to refocus and reshape our association. We have streamlined the focus of the state to be more in line with other state associations. The plan our board has approved and put in place focuses on providing advocacy on the state level so that our membership’s voice is heard at the State House. We have a number of nationally active members that make sure we are heard on Capitol Hill as well. Later this month I will be traveling to Washington with those members and meeting with our congressional delegation in person to make sure the voice of NHHBA is heard all the way to Washington. The 50th annual Home Show was the most successful show in the history of NHHBA. Show Chairman John MacKinnon and his team produced a top flight event and a packed house. We were recognized by Senator Hassan, Governor Sununu and NAHB Senior Officer Greg Ugalde who were all on site for the opening ceremonies. The Tiny House initiative was a huge success. Tiny House Chair Todd Mezzanotte pulled the program together and created the “Evolution of The Tiny House” at the Home Show where visitors could see the process from raw trailer to finished home. The budget committee worked very hard and examined every item in our budget to get rid of any waste and identify any areas of over spending. We are now well in the black thanks to the efforts of so many who worked on various pieces of our budget and operations. There are still many challenges ahead for your next president. The world of associations is changing and we can no longer operate as we did 50 or even
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five years ago. The social experience of membership and meetings is changing. The delivery of education is changing. Even the way we join and renew the association is changing with the new system NAHB is implementing this year. People communicate with Skype and WeChat. Education is done through web-based activities. So many of the basic processes we engage in are now automated. People shop on line for everything now and you can see the change on main streets and malls. The association is no different. One big challenge coming this year will be taking a hard look at our physical presence in Concord. We have a beautiful building that was built by a number of very dedicated members and volunteers. There is no doubt that our NH Builders family of members has enjoyed this home for a long time and value it greatly. It is however, now much more space than a modern, streamlined association needs. The NHHBA board has been grappling with this all year and will have to make a decision on what to do in the near future. There are numerous options on the table and I encourage all members to come to the next board meeting to learn more about our current and future space needs and voice your opinion. The other big challenge going forward is growing our membership. Several of the local associations have been running membership drives and the state board is working with them on discounts and other opportunities to create the additional value that potential members need to see. With the plans we have put in place this year and a strong leadership team, I see a very bright future for NHHBA. I will still be around as your immediate past president and beginning this year I am serving as the Area 1 national chairman. To those of you with whom I have worked this year, I thank you from the bottom of my heart. For those whom I’ve yet to meet or work with, I look forward to connecting with you in the future. It has been an honor to serve as your president. Yours truly,
Paul L. Sullivan, CGR/CAPS/CGP 2017 NHHBA President
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Government Affairs WRITTEN BY PAUL MORIN
NHHBA Takes On the EPA
eginning this June, the New Hampshire Home Builders Association will begin a legal action to challenge a proposed federal regulation issued through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. It’s a complicated issue that the state association feels is well worth the time and effort in order to protect the affordability of land development and lot creation for the residential construction industry. Here’s a little background on the problem: There are typically three potential levels of regulation that may impact the development of land; local or municipal, state and federal. When it comes to stormwater, a development site in New Hampshire must comply with the state Alteration of Terrain program as well as the federal Construction General Permit issued by the EPA. The CGP is often administered on behalf of the EPA through the state, and this has been the standard practice for some time for New Hampshire developers. In April of 2016, the federal EPA issued something known as the General Permit for Stormwater Discharges from Small Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems, far more easily referred to as the MS4. Now why would the private development community have direct concerns regarding a federal permit covering the obligations of municipalities? Well, if you happen to be upstream of the regulated facilities under this permit, it may matter a lot. In fact, this proposed permit could have major implications in terms of both the cost to develop land and the number of building sites that may be approvable. The Clean Water Act is the umbrella under which the EPA issues regulations regarding stormwater. For private development, the CGP mentioned above addresses the elimination of pollutants before stormwater can leave a site. For localities with storm sewer systems, a separate MS4 permit governs the discharge of stormwater which eventually wind up in waters of the United States. One particular regulation under the new MS4 is known as “construction site runoff control,” and this is the section that is of concern for the development community. To put it another way, the EPA is requiring municipalities to better comply, and what better way to achieve the goal than applying further regulation upon developments to meet their MS4 obligations. Getting the picture? The question is not whether the EPA has the authority to regulate pollutant discharges into navigable waters of the United States. This is clearly within their authority. It is more a matter of “how” they go about this. In the case of MS4, it is not simply a matter of how much pollutant in your site discharge is too much. It may now involve 6
GRANITE STATE BUILDER MAGAZINE
how much discharge in terms of volume, and this is measured by impervious surface area. So in order for a locality to comply with the MS4, steps to compliance may be formulas for how much impervious surface is allowed in your private development. While this point is not entirely clear, it definitely is a step closer to pollutant regulation reducing the number of lots and homes you can get from a parcel of land, even if you are controlling the amount of the pollutant. In response, the New Hampshire Home Builders have engaged a law firm from the District of Columbia who are already working with the National Association of Home Builders on this important issue. Only three other states are subject to the MS4 through EPA and they include Massachusetts, Arizona and New Mexico. Massachusetts has already challenged the permit and New Hampshire is filing a companion law suit. If we did not join the suit, any favorable decision against the MS4 in Massachusetts would not be applied here. And home builders are not alone. Many municipalities are also suing due to the over-burdensome requirements on their storm water collection and management facilities. If the metrics of these regulations are difficult for towns to meet, standards will very likely become even tougher for developed lands that create runoff. Governor Sununu and spokespersons from many affected towns are speaking out against the costly nature of this permit, which is scheduled to go into effect in July 2018. The improvement projects that will be necessary will be in addition to what these towns typically budget, and may have to be paid in part through increases to impact fees and local property taxes. The towns and cities that fall under the permit are in southeast portion of the state from the Rochester area down through the seacoast and across the southern border to west of Nashua and Manchester. Most of the heaviest populations and growing communities will be impacted. So this association joins those cities and towns to object to this permit program and seek better answers to controlling pollutants. The matter of considerable expense is of mutual concern. All land development needs to be responsibly planned and executed, but where the line is to be drawn remains to be seen.
Paul Morin & Tricia Newhall-Grahame are partners in The Abacus Group, a consulting firm offering advocacy on behalf of individuals, businesses and nonprofit groups at the local and state government levels. Their construction support services include dispute resolution and assistance with building code compliance issues. SUMMER 2017
Special Report COURTESY NAHB
Aging-in-Place Remodeling, Minor Modifications Gaining Popularity
he past five years have seen increases in the number of remodelers engaged in aging-in-place home modifications and home owner awareness of these types of remodeling projects, according to a survey by NAHB Remodelers, the remodeling arm of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). Released as a kick off to National Home Remodeling Month, the survey of remodelers also revealed that simple and less costly modifications are increasing in popularity. “Low-cost, simple modifications to help people be safer and more comfortable in their homes, such as installing grab bars and higher toilets, continue to be the most popular aging-in-place remodeling projects,” said 2017 NAHB Remodelers Chair Dan Bawden, CAPS, CGP, CGR, GMB, a remodeler from Houston. “A professional remodeler can make recommendations to homeowners that meet both their lifestyle and budget needs.” According to the survey, 80 percent of remodeling companies are doing aging-in-place projects, up from 68 percent in 2013.
Remodelers reporting that “most” of their customers were familiar with the aging-in-place concept increased from 11 percent in 2013 to 17 percent in 2016. The five aging-in-place remodeling projects that saw the largest increases since 2013 were: • Added lighting/task lighting increased 12 percent • Curb-less showers increased 9 percent • Grab bars increased 7 percent • Non-slip floors increased 7 percent • Widening doorways increased 5 percent More complex and costly projects saw minor decreases in popularity since 2013. Adding an entry-level bedroom dropped one point to 33 percent, and installing ramps or lowering thresholds decreased two points to 49 percent. For more information about remodeling, visit nahb.org/remodel For the full 55+ HMI tables, please visit www.nahb.org/55hmi.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) defines Aging-in-Place as “the ability to live in one’s own home and community safely, independently and comfortably, regardless of age, income or ability level.”
GRANITE STATE BUILDER MAGAZINE
Special Report BY CRYSTAL WARD KENT
Automation, Comfort, Security Building Today’s Smart House
id I leave the windows open? The door unlocked? Is the oven on? Is the dog on the couch? Worries that used to haunt homeowners as they left for work or travel are now a thing of the past thanks to new “smart” technologies that are being built-in to new homes and retrofitted into existing structures. With the push of a button or a swipe of the app on a smartphone, users can not only check on doors and windows, they can also close them, turn on the air conditioner and even make sure their favorite tunes are playing when they walk in the door. But are such options truly available to the average homeowner? And what about the challenges of installing them? Is it worth it? Paul Kerrigan, chief operating officer of Chinburg Properties/Chinburg Builders, Inc. in Newmarket, has seen an increase in the high-tech trend, especially in high-end homes, with smaller gains in mid-level homes. “Within the past five years, there has been a definite increase in requests for this type of technology,” he says. “A lot of that is due to the fact that pricing for such technology has become more affordable, and much of the technology is now available through Wi-Fi, as
GRANITE STATE BUILDER MAGAZINE
opposed to having to be hard-wired in. People do like the idea that they can receive an alert on their phone if their heat dips below the required setting or there is a door alarm going off. I don’t know if we will see the addition of such technology widespread, but I think the trend is going to continue to grow for the near future.”
There has been tremendous growth in the purchase of smart house technology and security systems, both by builders and do-it-yourselfers. Michael Whitcher, president of Whitcher Builders in Strafford, has also seen increased interest in high-tech homes, but says it depends on the market. “I definitely get more requests not only for the higher-end homes, but primarily those in a suburban or urban area,” he says. “I’m not getting as much interest in rural areas. Some of that may be due to the fact that this is New Hampshire, and in most small towns, people don’t even lock their doors. The other factor is in more rural areas, Wi-Fi is not as reliable, so you might need a hard-wired system, and that requires more of a commitment.” NEST is one of the most popular technologies for controlling heat, lights and air conditioning, as well as providing smoke and carbon monoxide alarms and security cameras. According to Kerrigan, pricing for the technology was originally around $500 to $600, but has now dipped to under $300. “The NEST app can truly help you save money by allowing you to better control your utilities when you are not at home,” Kerrigan says. “Within two weeks, the system will learn your preferences and automatically turn the heat back at
night or adjust the AC. If you are away, you can program it to run systems at a minimum. With NEST, it will pay for itself within one or two years in terms of energy savings.” Security cameras have also become very affordable, but neither Kerrigan nor Whitcher have seen high demand – outside of certain markets. “I see them requested for second homes – places where people are not there much of the time and want to keep an eye on things,” says Kerrigan. “Your so-called ‘snowbirds’ like them, and they are popular in over-age 55 communities, where again people may be traveling a lot.” With so much tech available, one of the challenges is getting home owners to think about what they really want. “We try to get the client to think about what their goals are,” says Whitcher. “What do they want the technology to accomplish? Is it about making their home safer or more energy efficient or easier to operate? Do they want cameras inside and out and how many cameras? Are they truly going to be checking this footage or is it just nice to have? I’ve had clients request cameras for the front doors only and forget the side doors – which actually may be more vulnerable as they are less exposed. It’s good to talk through the options.” Whitcher says that a security system can be a deterrent to burglars, and that for many folks, it brings peace of mind. “It’s the same with being able to remotely lock the front door – you may never use that feature, but for some clients the idea that they can if they need to is comforting.” SONOS, a Wi-Fi based home sound system, is also growing in popularity, but primarily with mid-level home owners who are adding this element later, and often doing it themselves. Kevin Greenwood, of SSI Home Systems in Hudson, has seen tremendous growth in the purchase of smart house technology and SUMMER 2017
security systems, both by builders and do-ityourselfers. “Part of the increase is because it is more affordable, and part of it is because homeowners can install it themselves – it’s not as technologically challenging as it was five or ten years ago,” he says. “I’ve been in the business for 15 years, and it used to be that everything had to be hard-wired. Now, much
Today, home applications can be linked through Wi-Fi that allows devices such as light switches, thermostats, cameras, door locks etc. to communicate with a network hub. of the technology is Wi-Fi based, so there is no need to rip out walls unless you want the hard-wired systems. The other big change is that today’s systems are built to ‘talk’ to each other. Before, each system was made by a company specializing in that technology. Your security system was one provider, comfort controls were another, entertainment was another.” None of those systems were built to integrate together, Greenwood says. Users had to create complex interfaces that didn’t always work if they wanted to have one central control system. It was also very expensive to have that kind of whole-house technology, so only the wealthy could afford to make such an investment. This has all changed. “Today, all of your various home applications are linked through what is called the Z-Wave protocol, a wireless mesh network that allows devices such as light switches, thermostats, cameras, door locks etc. to communicate with a network hub,” he says. “This hub then allows them to be controlled from anywhere. We use an access system called Teleguard for this kind of integration and control for both household services and security. NEST allows for some of these functions, but will not interface with your home security system.” Having a high-tech home is also more aesthetically pleasing than it was previously. “It used to be that to have a totally integrated tech system for door and window controls, thermostats, sound and security, you had to have one huge motherboard installed NHHBA.com
somewhere, or often a small room of just electronics,” Greenwood says. “Now, all that may be required is a few switches or buttons and your phone. Everything is transformed.”
Pros & Cons Though such systems are affordable and easier to install, there can be issues. “Wi-Fi is not perfect,” says Greenwood. “It relies on a line of communication that you cannot control. It is radio frequency-based, so if something is blocking that frequency, it will go down. If you call me and tell me your Wi-Fi cameras are down, and it’s a frequency issue, there is nothing I can do to fix it. Therefore, my advice is, if you absolutely want systems to work 100 percent of the time, then invest in a hard-wired version.” Whitcher agrees that Wi-Fi can be problematic. “Wi-Fi systems can interfere with other technology, such as your DVRs or other devices,” he says. “Sometimes you have to add or change routers to avoid signal disruptions.” In terms of adding security systems or smart house technology to existing homes, they all agree that Wi-Fi systems have made this relatively easy. “There are very few places that Wi-Fi can’t go,” Greenwood says. “If you want a hardwired system, then we do have to open up some walls, so it depends on how much demolition you want to do. However, sometimes we install hybrid systems. If the client wants hard-wired in an existing home, we do that everywhere we can while being as minimally invasive as possible, then we install Wi-Fi for the really hard to access areas. That’s been a good solution for many homeowners.”
The Wave of the Future? Kerrigan says that every five years, builders are having to adjust to some sort of major technological or marketing shift, and learn new requirements. “We’ve had to learn about solar hot water and solar panels, geothermal heat and wells, HDMI cable – now it’s smart house technology. Builders and their vendors have to accept that there will be a learning curve and realize that this is the way things are going. Many homes, especially higher end, are going to have more specialized components than 10 years ago.”
Greenwood points out that many builders are partnering with firms such as his in order to bring clients the full range of home control and security services. “They are realizing that simply installing TV and phone drops no longer meet the needs of their buyers or the systems in the homes. Many of today’s home buyers are demanding this type of technology and see it almost as a necessity. When a firm like mine is brought in, it’s easy for the builder to accommodate the client.” Whitcher is not sure if the technology is worth the investment, believing that there are other home improvements that will pay bigger dividends in the long term. “Certainly, if a customer wants such a system, we will install it, but if a client truly wants to invest in elements that will increase the value of their home, then I would suggest alternatives,” Whitcher says. “Things like more insulation, LED lights, a high-efficiency
Not long ago, just one outdoor security camera was $1,000 and now homeowners can purchase one for under $200. boiler, or energy-saving appliances will save you money now and down the road, and add to resale value. Similarly, I would consider nicer carpet or granite countertops over security cameras and NEST-type technology. Most homes today are built with energy efficiency in mind, so your heating, lighting and AC costs are already greatly reduced, and something as simple as a programmable thermostat is still cost-effective and highly useful. I’m not sure how much smart house technology adds to real energy savings. I think there is a lot of hype in the marketplace. Some of this trend may be because the technology is a novelty and people like gadgets, but we’ll see. Whatever the future holds, we are ready to install it.” Crystal Ward Kent, principal, started Kent Creative in Portsmouth in 1990 and has more than 20 years experience in writing, art direction and marketing. She also has done extensive freelance writing for newspapers, magazines and books, including Yankee Magazine, Guidepost Books and many others. For more information about Kent Creative, go to kentcreativeweb.com. GRANITE STATE BUILDER MAGAZINE
BY CATHERINE SCHOENENBERGER
Labor Challenges in the Granite State A Look at New Hampshire’s Construction Succession local contractors and tradespeople as facilitators and judges. Another case in point is the New Hampshire Home Builders Association with their “Tiny House” initiative finding shelter with the students at the Seacoast School of Technology in Exeter. A most concerted, inclusive and proactive effort on the New Hampshire construction scene is the New Hampshire Construction Career Days (NH-CCD). Since 2009, NH-CCD has offered over 6,500 New Hampshire high school students the opportunity to experience all things construction via the “hands-on” experience. The exhibitors include local departments of public works, department of transportation, department of education, department of labor, trade unions, utilities, private engineering firms, industry associations, private contractors and secondary educational institutes. NH-CCD proves to be a snapshot of what every corner of the construction/ transportation industry deems as priority: Let’s get our kids interested, engaged and employed, and let’s involve all of them.
t’s not news that our country is facing a skilled labor force crisis – not only in the construction industry, but across the board in all industries. Specifically to construction, however, the industry as a whole ranked ninth in its labor shortage index with skilled tradespeople (Wall Street Journal, April 2016). The need is huge and real. The Career Education Colleges and Universities (CECU) reported in their Shortage of Skills segment (July 2016), ”[this] problem is expected to worsen in the coming years as demand rises. The Bureau of Labor Statistics 2016 (BLS) projects a 13 percent growth in the construction sector between 2014 and 2024 – far above the average 7 percent growth rate – resulting in 180,100 new jobs. If one assumes a conservative 20 percent replacement rate for retiring baby boomers, the total new demand in the decade ahead is 457,380 added professionals in the construction trades.” Adding to this is the findings that the new hires in the 19-25 age group has been consistently decreasing since 2006 (at peak at 18 percent), to the 2012-13 statistic of just 13 percent. Our replacement workforce of the baby boomers is practically non-existent, and most certainly disappearing. In point in fact, in New Hampshire, the “Granite State,” the average age of a skilled mason, for example, is 56 years old.
What are we doing now in the face of this crisis? In New Hampshire, there are multiple initiatives that are bringing awareness to the trades. Many private firms and public agencies are dedicating time, staff and financial resources to collectively bring in the future workers to the industry. Industry partnerships between public and private entities are much more prevalent. On the high school level, the Career Technical Education (CTE) centers across the state, for example, are having SkillsUSA competitions, involving 10
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What about the women? March 5 – 11, 2017 was National Women In Construction Week, celebrating women in the construction industry at all levels. During this time, the National Association of Women in Construction’s (NAWIC) 120-plus chapters around the country took part in highlighting, spotlighting and focusing on women who work in construction. Many, including Granite State Chapter #218, brought awareness to construction as a viable career option for women of all ages, by participating in community build projects, social media posts and getting out in front of young women with the “her-story” of career path and choices. This is another example of where the construction industry can thrive. Statistically, women in construction constitute less than 10 percent of the workforce. This statistic hasn’t changed in over 40 years. The good news is that the numbers are indicating that women in construction are on the uptick. Wage equality in construction is closer than in any other industry, too. The BLS indicates that women, overall, make about 82 cents for every $1 a man makes doing the same work. In construction, women are making nearly 92 cents for every $1; it’s still not equal but it is much better. Awareness, education and training are at the foundation to building construction’s skilled labor force. It is only through consistent and collective collaboration that this industry will improve the overall strength and succession for its future. Catherine Schoenenberger is the president of Stay Safe Traffic Products, Inc.; president of NH Construction Career Days, Inc.; national president-elect of the National Association of Women in Construction; a member of Granite State Chapter #218; and immediate past president of NH Public Works Association, Inc. SUMMER 2017
SNHHBRA Joins Forces With Students Entering the Trades
arly on a cool morning in April, a clutch of Pinkerton Academy students lined up to have a chance at running an excavator that was on the grounds of the Derry school, compliments of Tom Gardocki and Interstate Landscape Co. It was one of the more popular activities at the 18th annual Pinkerton Day and Mini
Trade Show. Inside the Shepard Auditorium, meanwhile, SNHHBRA members were busily preparing for the Mini Trade Show to showcase their businesses to students hoping to enter the trades. Students entered the trade show prepared with resumes, ready to discuss jobs, internships and to learn about the construction business in a real world setting. They had questions for members and were enthusiastic about the career opportunities that exist after graduation. Keynote speaker Tom Lannon, president of American Excavating Corp. and a graduate of Pinkerton Academy, spoke to the students and shared his business success story. He offered some helpful tips on preparing for interviews as well as impressing the importance of personal responsibility and integrity on the job. This event has been taking place for 18 years and continues to evolve each year to meet the needs of the students and building community. SNHHBRA is committed to supporting and encouraging these students, they are the future of our industry.
The 18th Annual Pinkerton Day and Mini Trade show could only have taken place with the generous support of our members. EVENT SPONSORS
The Granite Group
Mastic Home Exteriors
Daigle Plumbing and Heating
Home Innovations Corp
Next Era Excavation
Northwestern Mutual Financial Services
All-Ways Accessible ASAP Roofing, Inc. Granite State Hydroshield J.L. Powell Construction, LLC Law Offices of Jeffrey Higgins Enterprise Bank and Trust In-Laws Construction, LLC L and M Construction, Inc.
Salem Cooperative Bank Santo Insurance and Financial Services Travis Terry & Co. CPA Proulx Oil and Propane DONATIONS
Raynor Door Authority of NE Mastic Home Exteriors
Dollars & Sense COURTESY NAHB
Economic and Housing Update Housing Index Hits Milestone but Permits Still Lagging
ased on current price, permit and employment data, markets nationwide are running at an average of 100 percent normal economic and housing activity, according to the National Association of Home Builders/ First American Leading Markets Index (LMI). However, individual components of the LMI are at different stages of recovery. While employment has reached 98 percent of normal activity and home price levels are well above normal at 150 percent, single-family permits are running at just 53 percent of normal activity. “Single-family permits have inched up slowly as builders continue to face supplyside headwinds such as ongoing price hikes in building materials, a lack of buildable lots and labor shortages,” said NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz. “A proposal by the Department of Commerce to impose a 20 percent duty on Canadian lumber would only exacerbate this problem and slow down the already modest growth in housing permits.” “This is the first time the LMI has reached this key milestone and it shows how much our industry has improved since the depth of the Great Recession,” said NAHB Chairman Granger MacDonald, a home builder and developer from Kerrville, Texas. “However, we are concerned that single-family permits continue to trail the other components of the LMI and remain at only halfway back to normal.” Despite these challenges, the housing market continues to gradually move forward. The LMI shows that markets in 183 of the approximately 340 metro areas nationwide returned to or exceeded their last normal levels of economic and housing activity in the first quarter of 2017. This represents a yearover-year net gain of 67 markets. “Nearly three-quarters of all metros saw their Leading Markets Index rise over the
quarter, a sign that the overall housing market continues to make broad-based gains,” said Kurt Pfotenhauer, vice chairman of First American Title Insurance Company, which co-sponsors the LMI report. Baton Rouge, La., continues to top the list of major metros on the LMI, with a score of 1.76 – or 76 percent better than its historical normal market level. Other major metros leading the group include Austin, Texas; Honolulu; Provo, Utah; and San Jose, Calif. Rounding out the top 10 are Spokane, Wash.; Nashville, Tenn.; Los Angeles; Charleston, S.C.; and Salt Lake City. Among smaller metros, Odessa, Texas, has an LMI score of 2.18, meaning that it is now at more than double its market strength prior to the recession. Also at the top of that list are Midland, Texas; Ithaca, N.Y.; Walla Walla, Wash.; and Florence, Ala. The LMI examines metro areas to identify those that are now approaching and exceeding their previous normal levels of economic and housing activity. Approximately 340 metro areas are scored by taking their average permit, price and employment levels for the past 12 months and dividing each by their annual average over the last period of normal growth. For permits and employment, both the 12-month average and the annual average during the last period
of normal growth are also adjusted for the underlying population count. For singlefamily permits and home prices, 2000-2003 is used as the last normal period, and for employment, 2007 is the base comparison. The three components are then averaged to provide an overall score for each market; a national score is calculated based on national measures of the three metrics. An index value above one indicates that a market has advanced beyond its previous normal level of economic activity. Editor’s Note: In calculating the LMI, NAHB utilizes employment data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, house price appreciation data from Freddie Mac and single-family housing permits from the U.S. Census Bureau. In 2015, the Census Bureau revised the manner in which it obtains monthly counts of MSA single-family permits data. To maintain consistency within the LMI, NAHB excluded certain MSAs and improved comparability with previous years for the remaining areas. The LMI is published quarterly on the fourth working day of the month, unless that day falls on a Friday—in which case, it is released on the following Monday. For historical information and charts, please go to nahb.org/lmi
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An Invaluable Partner
Builders Installed Products, Manchester
ften, it’s the details in a project that leave a lasting impression with clients. That’s where Builders Installed Products can be an invaluable partner. For more than 35 years, home builders and remodelers have discovered that when it comes to working with subcontractors, Builders Installed Products has provided a specific focus on delivering on-time and on-budget. Builders Installed Products, founded in 1981 by Ken Berry – an ardent advocate of the New Hampshire Builders Association – is affiliated with Installed Building Products. However, the company is local – which means the company’s now-expanded menu of services is just one phone call away. “We’re a little company with a big umbrella,” says Andy Lawn, Vice President of Operations for Overhead Door, in Concord, and Builders Installed Products, in Manchester. “We’re a one-stop shop. We work in 13 different lines of business. We can help from the ground up – we can start by waterproofing your foundation. We can do all forms of insulation, whether it’s the most technical spray foam job, Owens-Corning custom fit net and blown-in application or high
GRANITE STATE BUILDER MAGAZINE
performance fiberglass batt installation. Our insulation products are a great example of renewable resources. Your recycled plastic and glass bottles as well as recycled newspaper and cardboard become excellent insulation materials that will provide energy savings for decades.” The company also installs Heat-N Glo fireplaces, gutters, garage doors, air barriers, and specializes in a wide array of interior work including custom closet shelving and heavy glass shower doors. “We can help with big job – a 300-unit apartment building – or we can do an addition and install a nice, heavy glass shower door for you,” Lawn says. “We do small jobs and large jobs; that is the benefit of Installed Building Products. They provide us with the resources to take care of all your needs.” And it does it with a single motto in mind: “We win with people.” The company recruits military veterans heavily, and hires people with a sense of discipline and integrity. “We don’t just offer a job, we offer a career,” Lawn says. “Builders Installed Products takes pride in their Certified Energy Expert Sales Team. Bob, Luke, Josh, Mike and Paul
are Building Performance Institute certified and are able to guide you in understanding today’s extensive energy code requirements. They work hand in hand with Production Manager Bobby O. and the Production Team to make our customers happy.” The first step in establishing a relationship with Builders Installed Products is a call to (603) 668-4411, (800) 626-7797, or a visit to the web site: buildersinstalledproducts.net. For people interested in joining the Builders Installed Products Team please call Dolly Anderson 603-935-8282 or email danderson@ installed.net.
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GSB Buzz 2017 Energy Star Partner of the Year Announced
GMNHBRA members and guests enjoy an evening of dining and learning more about the energy code at the Derryfield Country Club.
LRHBRA President Kurt Clason transforms an old railroad freight station in Ossipee into a shop/storage and office space.
Paul Kerrigan, chief operating officer of Chinburg Properties (left) presents the 2017 Energy Star Partner of the Year Award to Joe Rando, senior engineering assistant of GDS Associates, Inc. GDS was named a 2017 Energy Star Partner of the Year â€“ Home Energy Rater Award winner for its outstanding efforts to bring more energy-efficient homes to market. GDSâ€™s accomplishments were recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy in Washington, D.C. in April.
Left: Joe Richardson starts to remove 25 years of abandoned decay. Bottom left: Tracy Constant installs new windows. Bottom right: nearly completed on the renovations.
Thanks to the NH Building Officials Association! Students Honored at Pinkerton Day
SNHHBRA members interacted with and honored attendees of the 18th annual Pinkerton Day and Mini Trade Show. Participating members showcased their expertise and highlighted their businesses to students hoping to enter the trades after graduation. Keynote speaker Tom Lannon, president of American Excavating Corp. and a graduate of Pinkerton Academy, spoke to the students and shared his business success story.
GMNHBRA members and guests were on hand to learn more about the energy code and other important and timely topics courtesy of the NHBOA. Attendees enjoyed a delicious dinner and networking at the Derryfield Country Club in Manchester. In attendance, from left: Bill McKinney, city of Nashua; Wayne Richardson, town of Bedford; Steve Paquin, town of Belmont; Scott Tenney, town of Amherst, and Bill Nash-ICC Safe.
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Become a Member Today!
New Hampshire Home Builders Association Membership Fill out thisApplication form, mail or fax it For back and start to enjoy the benefits! 119 Airport Road • Concord, New Hampshire 03301 T: 603-228-0351 • F: 603-228-1877 • firstname.lastname@example.org • www.nhhba.com
Ck.# ________________________ Amount _____________________ Date________________________ Entered _____________________
Firm Name: ____________________________________________________________________________________________________ First Name:____________________________LastName________________________________Title: ________________________________ Address: ___________________________________________ City: ________________________ ST: ____ Zip: _ _ _ _ _ - _ _ _ _ Phone: _____________________________ Cell:_____________________________________ Fax: ____________________________ E-mail: _________________________________________________ Web:__________________________________________________ Billing Contact & Address
(if di rent from above): _______________________________________________________________________________________
Full Time Employees #: ________ Do you
If yes, how many employees are covered under your current program: ______ CHOOSE LOCAL ASSOCIATION Connecticut Valley ........................$.490 Lakes Region ...................................$..515 Manchester Nashua.........................$525 North Country .................................$..490 Seacoast .............................................$. ..525 Southern. ...........................................$. ..525 Southwestern ....................................$..490 White Mountain .............................$..490 ................... ..$ 80 See back page for explanation
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NAHB COUNCILS Remodelors Council ....................... $ 80 Sales & Marketing Counci.............. $ 80 OTHER DONATIONS:
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Membership next page completed. MEMBERSHIP Profile PROFILE Information INFORMATIONonNEXT PAGE must MUSTbeBE COMPLETED I understand that my membership dues entitle me to the ben ts and services of the National Association of Home Builders, the State and Local Associations. I will abide by the By-laws and Code of Ethics of the Association and will promote the objectives of the Association to the best of my ability.
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The NHHBA PAC exists to support state and local candidates for public office who support housing and small business related legislation and regulations in the Granite State. TOTAL $_____
Name: ______________________________________ Phone:_________________ Name: ______________________________________ Phone:_________________ I understand that by providing my contact information I consent to receive all forms of communications sent with other organizations. Full policy available upon request. All applications are “pending” until approved by the chosen local chapter association.
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Dues payments to NHHBA are NOT deductible as charitable contributions for federal tax purposes. However, dues payments may be deductible as an “ordinary and necessary” business expense, subject to an exclusion for lobbying activity. Because a portion of your dues is used for lobbying by NAHB and the NHHBA, 15% of the total dues, is not deductible for income tax purposes.
Revised 10/2016 Be sure to fill out the other side!
Membership Profile Information MEMBERSHIP PROFILE INFORMATION This code must be completed before application can be processed. The Membership Profile is designed for use by NAHB and its affiliated state and local associations to provide services which respond to the changing needs of our membership. Also, if you don’t know the exact answer for a particular block, please give your best estimate. NOTE: Affiliate members use codes that pertain to your employer. MEMBERSHIP CLASSIFICATION - (check only one) Builder, Remodeler, General Contractor members Associate members, i.e. suppliers, vendors, sub-contractors Affiliate members are employees of a firm represented by a builder or associate member of the same local association OCCUPATION CODE 1 enter the number 1 on the appropriate line. Select only from occupation codes A-L. Builders & Remodelers ONLY ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
(A) Builder - Single-family, Custom (B) Builder - Single-family, Spec/Tract (C) Builder - Multi-family, Condominium/Co-op (D) Builder - Multi-family, Rental (E) Builder - Non-residential, Industrial (F) Builder - Non-residential, Office/Retail
___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
(G) Builder - Non-residential, Other (H) Contractor - General (I) Contractor - Remodeling/Rehab., Commercial (J) Contractor - Remodeling/Rehab., Residential (K) Land Developer (L) Home Manufacturer
Associates ONLY - enter the number 1 on the appropriate line. Select only from occupation codes M-Z. ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
(M) Accountants (N) Architects. Planners, Designers & Engineers (O) Attorneys (P) Financial (Q) Insurance & Title Companies (R) Marketing & Communications (S) Product Manufacturers
___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
(T) Property Management (U) Real Estate - Sales Brokerage (V) Retail Dealers (W) Subcontractors - Carpentry (X) Subcontractors - Other (Y) Wholesale Dealers/Distributors (Z) Other (Please specify)_____________________
OCCUPATION CODE 2 All Members - enter number 2 on lines A-Z above, for the company’s 2nd most important business activity. OCCUPATION CODE 3 All Members - enter number 3 on lines A-Z above, for the company’s 3rd most important business activity. ESTIMATED TOTAL NUMBER OF PAID EMPLOYEES All members, enter total number of employees, including member, on payroll of member’s firm and affiliated companies. Use up to four digits; insert only one digit in each box. ___ ___ ___ ___ (Will be used only to identify employment impact of industry.) ANNUAL DOLLAR VOLUME OF ALL CONSTRUCTION DEVELOPMENT Complete only if member is involved in one or more construction and/or development activities. Check appropriate dollar range from (1)-(4) based on total volume from all construction/development activities in previous twelve months. ___ (1) Under $1 million ___ (3) $5 million - $10 million ___ (2) $1 million - $5 million ___ (4) Over $10 million ANNUAL NUMBER OF RESIDENTIAL DWELLING UNITS Complete only if member produces residential units (sale or rental) through new construction, conversion or rehabilitation. Check appropriate range based on all residential units produced in previous 12 months. ___ (1) 0 Units ___ (4) 26 - 100 Units ___ (2) 1 - 10 Units ___ (5) 101 - 500 Units ___ (6) Over 500 Units ___ (3) 11-25 Units MONEY BACK GUARANTEE If, within the first year of your membership you are not completely satisfied, the NHHBA will refund the amount of your STATE DUES To qualify for this refund, you must have participated in at least one NHHBA committee, attended at least two NHHBA events and have been present at a minimum of three local association meetings (bringing a prospective member to at least one) within one year. NHHBA 6 PAYMENT PLAN 1. Six payments in six consecutive months, $200 due with application and the balance of the dues based on the local association that you join, spread equally over the next five months. Payment may be made by credit or debit card ONLY. 2. Applicant will authorize automatic payments for the five remaining installments 3. Membership will be “pending” until approval of application by local association. 4. Cancellation from this program by the applicant before final payment is received or failure to make scheduled payments, will result in forfeiture of all amounts paid. 5. Cancellation from this program by the local association, NHHBA or NAHB will result in a refund of monies paid to date.
NHHBA thanks our
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Available at participating dealers. Private offer amount varies by model. Retail and fleet deliveries for City Express receive a $250 offer. Retail deliveries for all other eligible vehicles receive a $500 offer. Fleet deliveries on the following vehicles receive a $1,000 offer: Buick Enclave; Chevrolet Traverse, Silverado, Express; GMC Acadia, Sierra, Savana. All other fleet deliveries will receive a $500 offer. Valid toward the purchase or lease of eligible 2015 and 2016 model-year vehicles. Customer must take delivery by 1/3/17. Not compatible with other private offers. Not valid on prior purchases. Compatible with many current incentives. Incentives are subject to change without notice. Excludes Buick Regal, Cascada; Chevrolet Corvette, Impala Limited, Sonic, Spark, Trax, SS, Volt; all Cadillac 2 models. FAN required for fleet deliveries. See dealer for complete details. Offer eligible for non3 CAP customers only through 12/31/16. See dealer for details. To qualify, vehicle must be used in the day-to-day operations of your business and not solely for personal/non-business-related transportation purposes. Must provide proof of business. For complete program requirements, including information regarding offers, vehicles, equipment, options, warranties, and ordering, consult your dealer or visit gmbusinesschoice.com. Take delivery by 9/30/16. ©2016 General Motors. All rights reserved. The marks appearing in this ad are the trademarks or service marks of GM, its subsidiaries, affiliates, or licensors.
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The Finish Nail BY PAUL MORIN
More War Stories
very one of us with more than five minutes in this business has a client story to tell. I’ve used this column to share a few but there’s always plenty more. Employees and subcontractors can also create some interesting drama, but only an owner can create the situations that become legend. Like this one. The home was a fairly standard looking colonial with a long front porch and bonus room above a three-stall garage. The building site was remote, recently purchased by the clients on a large 20-acre parcel. I wasn’t the first builder they had approached. In fact, they had been under contract with a modular builder who went so far as to quote the building and take a deposit. Then he must have visited the site. The driveway was 1,200 feet long and wound its way in and out of thick trees that could barely allow a pickup truck, let alone a modular on a trailer. Worse, the driveway was on the wrong side of a small bridge with a 10 ton limit. No way anything was getting delivered without a sky hook. So they managed to get their money back and called me. The driveway wasn’t going to be an issue if we could remove a few select trees. That’s when I learned they didn’t even own the driveway. It was an easement over the abutting property for the first 800 feet. The easement gave the right to “pass and re-pass,” which probably meant by foot a century ago when it was written. It certainly didn’t give us the right to cut trees for a concrete truck to pass and re-pass. The clients were unfazed. “Just cut the trees,” they said. He was a civil engineer and surveyor. He should have known better. She was a bartender. She liked to get mad at things. The abutter was an old woman in her 80s and her live-in ne’er do well son had the IQ of a labradoodle. This wasn’t going to be easy. Somehow, we managed to convince everyone that two trees needed to be cut. Once done, we got concrete into the site, the foundation poured and we were ready for power and framers. The clients said they already had everything worked out with the power company. I learned that this meant an overhead run down the driveway through the easement. “Which part of pass and re-pass did you think included overhead wires and power poles?” I asked them. A new easement had to be drafted and presented to the old lady and her son. “Mah. Hey, Mah. You don’t gotta sign that, Mah,” he said while popping open a can of Miller Lite at 9 a.m. And she didn’t for several months. 20
GRANITE STATE BUILDER MAGAZINE
In spite of the impasse, the clients insisted we proceed so we framed, roofed and sided the home on generator. In the end, we managed to get an agreement from Mah to run power underground the entire 1,200 feet for a small fortune, but what choice was there? As we finished the home, which was now four months over schedule, one more major hurdle showed up. The cabinet finish selected was “mocha” and that’s what we ordered, and delivered, and installed. That’s when the wife showed up and had a meltdown. “That’s not what I ordered and I’m going to sue the cabinet company and write letters and trash their desks unless they replace it with the right cabinets, blah, blah, blah!” Well, the cabinet stains came in five different coffee-sounding names that all looked nearly identical. It could have been any one of those that she thought she picked. It was going to take a lot of arm-twisting to get the company to swap us the “latte” color she claimed she wanted. I would have to cash in some serious chips plus add another four weeks of delay. And I wasn’t at all convinced I could get the company to agree. Meanwhile, we finished up the rest of the home. During the last week of punch-out, the husband showed up and looked around the kitchen. “Are those the new cabinets?” he asked. “Hmmphhh, I don’t know what the big deal was. I can’t even tell the difference.” Before we could say anything, his wife walked in. “Oh, that’s so much better!” she exclaimed. “This is what I ordered, not those stupid ugly ones from before. Thank you, Paul. I love these cabinets!” I guess all’s well that ends well. And just in case you are wondering whether I actually got the supplier to swap those cabinets out, let me stop you right there and refer you to the labradoodle: “Mah, you don’ gotta answer that, Mah!” Paul Morin is president of Tarkka Homes Inc. in Weare, NH and a partner in The Abacus Group, a lobbying and consulting firm in Manchester, NH. In 2009, he was the first residential builder to receive the New Hampshire Construction Industry Ethics Award. He was asked to write a satirical article for The Finish Nail and directs all offended readers to the publisher for apologies. SUMMER 2017
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