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Gene Kreitzer looks forward to his year as president of PBA

4 Use this opportunity to shape your company’s future

16 New director has eye on improvement

PBA preparing 2009 objectives

Pittsburgh’s Bureau of Building Inspection chief is a man with a mission

9 Strategy: Fresh thinking, solid ideas Learning from past successes to survive in today’s economy

10 Homes for our troops PBA member teams up with a nonprofit organization and volunteers to make homeownership possible for veterans

19 Adopt a cell phone policy for your business Ever-present phones have been the cause of problems for some employers

21 Member spotlight Ron Brungart Contracting: Hands-on touch

15 Warmth from the floor up

22 Final word

Radiant floor heating is an efficient solution for hard-toheat spaces

Would you like a doctor with that new home?

16 Concrete lite Autoclaved aerated concrete is economically green

Keystone Builder cover designed by James Robinson

Member Insider

Keystone Builder

Volume 6 • Issue 1 • January/February 2009

6 We build together in 2009

Member briefs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A, B On the hill . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C PA House & Senate look different . . . . . C Facebooking your way to success . . . . .D

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AssociAte Vice president Jim Miller, Lancaster County BIA secretAry Ray Venema, West Branch Susquehanna BA treAsurer Joe Harcum, Wayne County BA immediAte pAst president Ray Fertig, York BA executiVe Vice president Doug Meshaw editor Eric C. Wise Associate editor Chris Anderson

printcomm staff publisher Kevin Naughton Assistant editor/publication director H.J. Hormel Graphic design Jason Gabel Advertising sales manager Brenda Poe Advertising sales Jeff Pinwar • 800-935-1592, ext. 118 Keri Gustafson • 800-935-1592, ext. 133 Address correspondence to: Keystone Builder 600 North Twelfth Street Lemoyne, PA 17043 Phone: 800-692-7339 or 717-730-4380 Fax: 717-730-4396 Web: www.pabuilders.org E-mail: ewise@pbabuilders.org Advertising does not imply acceptance or endorsement of the products contained in the publication. publishing and advertising sales services provided by:

2929 Davison Rd. • Flint, MI 48506 Phone: 800-935-1592 • www.printcomm.com An exclusive publication of the pBA Keystone Builder magazine is published six times a year by the Pennsylvania Builders Association®, Editorial Offices, 600 North Twelfth Street, Lemoyne, PA 17043. With the exception of official association announcements, the statements of fact and opinion that are made herein are the responsibility of the authors alone and do not reflect an opinion or philosophy of the officers or the membership of the PBA. Materials may not be reproduced without written permission from the PBA headquarters. postmAster: Send address changes to Pennsylvania Builders Association, 600 North Twelfth Street, Lemoyne, PA 17043. suBscriptions: Subscriptions available through membership to the Pennsylvania Builders Association.

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President’s message

Vice president Joseph Mackey, Pocono Builders Association

By Gene Kreitzer • PBA President

president Gene Kreitzer, Lebanon County BA

Use this opportunity to shape your company’s future

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s you receive this issue in early January, you have the opportunity to tell us what’s important to you. Pennsylvania’s laws affect how we are able to do business and how successful we can be. After a tough economic year in Pennsylvania, PBA is regrouping in January as we prepare our objectives for the coming year. At the end of the General Assembly’s two-year session in 2008, PBA took pride in its success, with the passage of the scrap metal theft prevention law, the construction code update that created a technical review and advisory council, and the home improvement contractor registration law that balanced consumer and industry needs. (For more details, see On the Hill on Page C of the Member Insider section). Following this success, PBA has some openings to fill among its legislative priorities, both offensive and defensive. In November, regional legislative officers began gathering ideas for the priority issues in 2009 and beyond. We understand that conditions vary across the state, and that’s why we need as much input as possible from all of our local associations and chapters. Without your input, we are not sure what issues are of greatest importance to you and others in your community. Association leaders will continue gathering ideas from members in January to form a list of core issues that will be discussed during regional meetings. During regional meetings, each region will discuss, debate and prioritize the issues. All regions’ recommendations will be brought before the PBA government affairs committee Feb. 27. The committee will again discuss and debate these ideas to make recommendations to the board of directors who will take action the following day. As you can easily see, the process was set up to maximize the potential for members to provide their experience and insight to setting government affairs priorities. PBA leaders depend on members who are engaged and involved to keep the association heading forward. And, as your new president, I am ready to listen to your ideas, concerns and suggestions so that we all can work together and build a stronger association. My theme for 2009 is “We build together.” It’s that simple. It starts with all of us making a joint effort, and together we can find a path to a prosperous year. s

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at www.pabuilders.org

I Keystone Builder • January/February 2009

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Have New Business Come to You. Get a Booth at ABC. Atlantic Builders Convention - April 22- 24, 2009

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Join us for the largest building industry trade show in the Northeast, the Atlantic Builders Convention (ABC). With participants from six regional states representing ALL aspects of the building industry, the ABC provides you with an unique opportunity to network and build relationships with leaders in the building industry.

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PLUS, All New Green exhibitors, demonstrations and sessions this year. Learn how your next project can incorporate green-building techniques and principles as experts discuss strategies that you can use right away.

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ABC also offers attendees and exhibitors:

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• Over 700 exhibitor booths • Sessions about current industry trends, policies & developments • Certification courses • Live demonstrations on the latest products • Marketing & networking opportunities and more!

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C elebrating Our Diamond Jubilee!

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Atlantic City Convention Center - Atlantic City, New Jersey

To register online or for other opportunities including exhibiting or marketing visit www.abconvention.com

R ejuvenate the Dream...E mbrace the Opportunity See you at ABC!

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Gene Kreitzer, left, speaks with vendors during the 2008 PBA Meet the Builder.

‘We build together’ in 2009 Gene Kreitzer looks forward to his year as president of PBA

by M.H. Morrison ene Kreitzer, owner of Gene Kreitzer Construction, Fredericksburg, knows what he wants from his year as the 2009 PBA president: more members and a stronger association. “My theme for 2009 is ‘We build together.’ The goal is to promote all the ways PBA can make our associates and industry stronger,” Kreitzer said. His other task is building membership, by not only getting new members but also retaining current ones. He said the key to achieving this goal is making sure to get the word out about the benefits of membership, especially the variety of discounts and savings opportunities, such as the Pennsylvania One-Call program. “The locals must take advantage of the resources that the state offers to increase membership and to retain membership”

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As the president of the Lebanon County BA, Gene Kreitzer was among those leading the group’s Habitat for Humanity project.

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from information packets to the web site, Kreitzer said. He added, “Retention is as important as new membership. For every member we don’t retain, we have to get two.”

Getting others involved As president, in addition to encouraging more members to take advantage of the benefits, Kreitzer would like to see members more involved in the direction of PBA, emphasizing that it is a bottomup organization. This means that the general membership tells the board what they want done. The board then tells the executive committee, which tells the senior officers, who pass it along to the staff, which implements the instructions.

Starting off As a third-generation sheet-metal worker, Kreitzer started in the building industry as a union sheet-metal apprentice. When the company he worked for went out of business, “I wanted my own business,” he said, starting his company in 1978 doing remodeling, siding, roofing and small additions. He had some experience when he began his company after working for one summer for a local builder. “I learned on the job,” he said of his company. He worked primarily solo for five years when a customer for whom he had done remodeling work asked Kreitzer to build him a home. Over the decades, Kreitzer hired others to work with him, but last year he reduced the company’s payroll to himself and his son. They still do repair work and small jobs on their own, but for house construction, they use subcontractors. “We saw it as a better business model” in using subcontractors, he said, especially with the difficulty in hiring competent employees. Kreitzer Construction specializes in custom, residential and light commercial construction in a five-county area that includes Berks, where the company’s office is located near Fredericksburg, Lebanon, Schuylkill, Dauphin and Perry counties. While Kreitzer’s son is involved in the business, his wife, Dorothy, was involved with the business early, but Continued on page 8

“My theme for 2009 is ‘We build together.’ The goal is to promote all the ways PBA can make our associates and industry stronger.” Photo by James Robinson

New president at a glance President: Gene Kreitzer, owner of Gene Kreitzer Construction PBA involvement: 2008 vice president of PBA; chair of the small contractor committee and chair of the PBA Benefits Trust committee. Awards: 2001 Builder of the Year award, the 1999 Regional Vice President of the Year award and the 1991 Small Contractor of the Year award. Local affiliation: Lebanon County Builders Association, where he has served as president, vice president, treasurer and life director. Additionally, he was involved in several committees including the habitat house, membership and builders show committees. January/February 2009 • Keystone Builder

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new pBA president Continued from page 7

not in recent years. He also has two daughters, one of whom is a senior in high school, and three granddaughters.

Great associations

Gene Kreitzer Construction builds homes in Berks, Lebanon, Dauphin, Schuylkill and Perry counties.

Kreitzer got involved with Lebanon County Builders Association because he wanted affordable health care. But the friendships and strong business connections he has made over the years have kept him involved. “They are friends, not competition. We’re doing it right now. We have a local builder whose [business is] a little on the slow side, so he’s been helping me.” Even in these economically trying times, there is “an ability to work together,” Kreitzer said. He moved on to the state level to further the friendships he built over the years, and these relationships are as indispensable as those he’s made through his local. “I needed a dry waller. Within two hours, I had a dry waller with one phone call” to a fellow PBA member. This involvement has also had wider business implications. Kreitzer said that he has been able to anticipate downturns as well as upswings. By talking with builders from other areas, he hears about changes in the industry, which has given him the opportunity to prepare. “It gives you a heads up on what’s coming down the road before it slaps you in the face. It gives you a little edge to survive the storm.”

More than a president Kreitzer said that his year as president and work with PBA are important, but his greatest accomplishments beyond the presidency are being elected to the board of directors of the First National Bank of Fredericksburg and staying in business for 30 years. These three decades of experience have given him perspective on the current economic situation, which he doesn’t see turning around for at least two years. “The whole industry is being challenged and all of our members are being challenged” with increased fuel costs, health insurance premiums and higher prices for just about every commodity, he said. That’s why PBA and the local associations are so important for providing support from other business owners, as well as the benefits that can mean cost savings. s

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I Keystone Builder • January/February 2009

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Strategy: Fresh thinking, solid ideas by Eric Wise, Editor few centuries ago, the Dutch challenged an established medical principle that the heart served as the body’s temperature regulator. When the heart failed, the body grew cold. When the heart was functioning properly, the body was kept appropriately warm. While the observations about how body temperature drops when the heart stops working are correct, the heart had a different function, of course. The idea that it was, in fact, a pump came from the Netherlands, an area often associated with windmills that pumped water. It was difficult for the experts of the time to see the heart as anything other than a temperature regulator. Likewise, in business it’s equally easy to fall into traps. Can you step back from your business, forget about what’s worked in the past and let today’s market take you in a new direction? Have your customers changed in the last decade? In today’s environment, people now communicate more than ever. Consumers are well-informed and motivated to share with each other. What are they saying about you? What can you do to ensure they are sharing positive stories?

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little changed about how the networks developed programming. Most network shows were designed to be accessible to as broad an audience as possible – while offending or alienating as few viewers as possible. When something did work on network television, it was quickly copied, proving Fred Allen’s adage: “Imitation is the sincerest form of television.” With these restraints, it’s no surprise that HBO — not the networks — gave television three of its most groundbreaking and successful shows of the past decade. “Sex and the City,” “The Sopranos” and “Six Feet Under” eschewed the vapid “gross-out” reality show format and formulaic dramas and comedies on the networks. HBO decided to serve audiences smaller than the networks’ and found an audience while creating a pop culture phenomenon (or two). Can you build a reputation for your business in a specialty area rather than trying to be everybody’s builder and remodeler? It’s rare for any business to succeed by viewing everyone as a potential customer. Concentrating can help you focus your work crew, dial in marketing to match your customer and maximize your company’s strengths.

Follow the money, not the trend

Willing to experiment Network television may have hit its zenith in the 1980s with the final episode of M*A*S*H, when CBS garnered an incredible audience of 105 million viewers – 77 percent of that evening’s television audience. Since then, network viewership has dropped as cable and satellite television has grown. The network’s hold on television has weakened, meaning the pot of advertising revenue is now divided among many more players. Despite the watershed change in audience behavior and advertiser support,

Another example of finding a different path to success stems from the California Gold Rush of the mid-1800s. Levi Strauss followed the mining frenzy to California. He realized that the odds were slim that any prospector would succeed in striking it rich after heading west, but he could make a good living as a merchant selling supplies to miners. Eventually, he teamed up with Jacob

Davis to patent riveted mining pants, called “waist overalls” at the time. Strauss’ mining pants proved popular and his company survives today, employing 10,000 workers, 150 years after he followed the rush to California. The dot-com craze of the late 1990s followed this pattern, as few Internetbased companies found the fortunes they sought, while technology suppliers thrived during the boom years and built businesses that survived the ensuing bust. Today, business owners in the housing industry should be looking for this type of connection to lead them to success when the industry begins to recover from its struggles in 2008. Will builders partner with the right developers to lead them to success? Will some builders refocus on remodeling kitchens and bathrooms?

Defending what works

Henry Sherwin was a partner in Sherwin, Dunham and Griswold when he tried to convince them the company should sell consumers pre-mixed paint. At the time, there was an art to mixing a variety of ingredients to formulate paint. Painters handled the mixing and the painting. Sherwin’s partners weren’t interested in pre-mixing, so Sherwin teamed up with Edward Williams to form a new company. Within a few years, Sherwin-Williams was selling ready-mix paint that allowed people to do their own painting. Before long, the company developed reusable cans, allowing people to use a can of paint for several small projects over time. As you plan for your business moving forward, consider what type of thinking led two partners to stick with selling each ingredient for paint separately vs. the approach the made SherwinWilliams successful. s January/February 2009 • Keystone Builder

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Volunteers swarmed around Tan’s new home in Springfield helping with tasks, including painting and landscaping, during volunteer day.

Pisey Tan relaxes in the bedroom of his new Delaware County home, built by the McKee Group and Homes for Our Troops.

Homes for our troops by Ben Semple hree Iraqi war veterans from Pennsylvania, all suffering from life-altering injuries, now have the pleasure of owning new homes. This gift of homeownership was made possible by hundreds of volunteers and Homes for Our Troops, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping those who have been injured while serving our country. For one recent project, Homes for Our Troops located an Iraq War veteran from the Olney section of North Philadelphia who needed help. During his second deployment with the 69th Armored Regiment of the U.S. Army in Iraq, Pisey Tan’s vehicle was struck by an improvised explosive

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device. The injuries caused by the explosion resulted in the eventual amputation of both of his legs. The McKee Group, a member of the HBA of Chester and Delaware Counties, joined forces with Homes for Our Troops and built a handicapped-accessible home in Springfield, Delaware County. Two other veterans who served in Iraq, James Fair and Sam Ross, received homes in Ross and Dunbar. These projects, along with 26 others, have not only given disabled veterans a better place to live, but also hope for a better future. The hope and joy that is created through the projects is what caused John Gonsalves, president and founder of Homes for Our Troops, to devote his life to this cause.

Homes for Our Troops was founded in 2004 and has been committed to helping those who have selflessly given to their country. The group locates service men and women who have returned home with serious disabilities and injuries and assists them and their families by coordinating the building of a new home or adapting an existing home for their needs. When Gonsalves read a story in the news about an injured serviceman, he looked for an organization that built homes for veterans where he could donate his services. When he discovered that no such organization existed, he knew it was time to make a difference in the lives of vets.

I Keystone Builder • January/February 2009

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Help provide a home for a disabled vet Want to donate, volunteer or get more information about Homes for Our Troops? Homes for Our Troops 37 Main St. Taunton, MA 02780 www.homesforourtroops.org Phone: 508-823-3300 Toll Free: 866-7-TROOPS Fax: 508-823-5411

“The hardest part was convincing the skeptics,” Gonsalves said. After he and his supporters started affecting veterans lives, volunteers started asking how they could help. “We build as many houses as we can with the resources that we have,” Gonsalves said. Due to the hard work and donations of the McKee Group, Gonsalves said Tan’s house was the most successful project that Homes for Our Troops has seen. Using one of their existing floor plans, Frank and Karen McKee, along with their employees and subcontractors, went above and beyond during the fourmonth build. With no cost to Homes for Our Troops, the McKee group was able to build, decorate and fully furnish the new home. With volunteers, neighbors, friends and family on hand, Tan was presented with his new home.

It was a “beautiful day,” said Jennifer McKee, vice president of communications. “We all got really close during the project, and it was really neat to see.” Gonsalves and his Massachusettsbased organization plan on returning to Pennsylvania in the near future. The group plans to reconstruct an old home donated by a World War II veteran, and representatives are reviewing other applications from Pennsylvania veterans. The benefits of volunteering extend further then helping those in need. McKee said, “Our company really came together (during the project); it was just like a team-building exercise.” Gonsalves said that one of his favorite aspects of the organization is seeing communities come together to benefit these men and women and to make a real difference. s

Pennsylvania Projects James Fair U .S . Army Ross Allegheny County

Sam Ross U .S . Army Dunbar Fayette County

Pisey Tan U .S . Army Springfield Delaware County

January/February 2009 • Keystone Builder

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Don’t be a dinosaur

Send PBA your e-mail address for up-to-date news and info

Leave the Jurassic Age behind and move into the 21st century — send PBA your e-mail address so we can keep you up-to-date on association and housing industry news that directly affects your business. If you don’t receive PBA’s e-mail updates, you’re missing critical information. E-mail (opposed to regular mail) keeps PBA’s costs down — which helps keep your dues low — while getting news to members faster. Send your e-mail address to aedwards@ PaBuilders.org and put E-MAIL in the subject line, or call Aiyana Edwards at 800-692-7339, ext. 3004. Don’t have an e-mail address? Call PBA and we can help you set one up! Make no bones about it, without e-mail, your business might go the way of the dinosaurs.

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MeMberInsIder January/February 2009

Member briefs

PBA talks up the economy. PBA member Craig Deimler (left), part-owner of Deimler & Sons Construction, Harrisburg, appeared on public radio in October, discussing the stability of the housing market in central Pennsylvania. Deimler, a member of the HBA of Metro Harrisburg, was a guest on the hour-long “Smart Talk” radio program on WITF-FM, along with Frederick Briggs (right), vice president of the Greater Harrisburg Association of Realtors. Both answered calls from local listeners and touted the relative strength of the mid-state’s housing economy compared with other regions of the country. Any PBA members who have the opportunity for media interviews are encouraged to contact Scott Elliott, PBA’s director of public relations at (800) 692-7339, ext. 3010, for media advice and talking points on a variety of subjects.

Leading your association in 2009 Gene Kreitzer, president Gene Kreitzer, owner of Gene Kreitzer Construction, will serve as the 2009 president of PBA. He is a past president of the Lebanon County Builders Association. Joseph Mackey, vice president Joseph Mackey of Target Homes becomes the vice president of PBA in 2009. Mackey became secretary in 2008 after there was a vacancy for the position.

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Jim Miller, associate vice president Jim Miller of Miller-Warner Construction has been elected associate vice president of PBA. Miller begins his second year in this position with PBA. He is an active member of the BIA of Lancaster County. Joe Harcum, treasurer Joe Harcum, founder of the Duck Harbor Company and president of the Wayne County BA, will serve as PBA treasurer. Harcum previously served as a regional legislative officer. Continued on page B January/February 2009 • Keystone Builder

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memBer BrieFs Continued from page A

Ray Venema, secretary Ray Venema of Susquehanna Builders was elected PBA’s secretary for 2009. Venema previously served as a regional vice president and alternate builder state director to NAHB. Ray Fertig, immediate past president Ray Fertig, vice president of Richard D. Poole LLC and member of the York County BA, completed his term as 2008 president of PBA and has moved on to duties held by the immediate past president.

Regional leaders PBA’s eight regions elected regional vice presidents and regional legislative officers during regional meetings in October. PBA President Ray Fertig introduced the 2009 leaders at the November board meeting: Ron Agulnick, regional vice president, southeast; Mike Kurpiel, regional legislative officer, southeast; Charlie Begley, RVP, southwest; John Lieberman, RLO, southwest; Robert Hutchins, RVP, northeast;

Joe Harcum, RLO, northeast; Paul Bell, RVP, northwest; Don Patterson, RLO, northwest; Betsy Dupuis, RVP, northcentral; Rob Jones, RLO, northcentral; Steve Artz, RVP, southcentral; Perry Cisney, RLO, southcentral; Mark McNaughton, RVP, mideast; Thomas Dupes, RLO, mideast; Warren Peter, RVP, midwest; and Tom Steele, RLO, midwest.

Pennsylvania’s NAHB delegation PBA’s board of directors elected its 2009 delegation to NAHB. Serving for 2009 are the following members: NAHB State Representative Stephen Black of BIA of Lancaster County, Builder State Director to NAHB Herb Miller of BIA of Lancaster County, Alternate Builder State Director to NAHB Ray Venema of West Branch Susquehanna BA, Associate State Director to NAHB Jim Pigott of the HBA of Metro Harrisburg and Alternate Associate State Director to NAHB N. Eugene Minnick of Central Susquehanna BA and West Branch Susquehanna BA.

Check out new, improved PaBuilders .org

PBA sends educational CD PBA recently mailed its annual Listen & Learn educational audio CD to its builder members. The CD, which includes nine educational tracks specifically tailored to builders, is another memberonly benefit that is enhanced by PBA’s Premier Partners. Audio from the CD also can be downloaded from the Education & Resources section of PaBuilders.org. This year’s CD features the following tracks: your association update on 2008 Uniform Construction Code developments; breaking down Federal Housing Administration loan options (presented by Wells Fargo Home Mortgage); the three S’s of structural framing (presented by iLevel by Weyerhaeuser); de-mystifying energy efficiency and new home construction programs (presented by EAM Associates); the advantage of building with integrated concrete forms (presented by The Lumber Yard); using FHA financing to increase sales (presented by Residential Warranty Co., LLC); new Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency program helping your customers tackle renovations and repairs (presented by PHFA); frequently asked questions that can affect your new home sales (presented by First National Bank); and housekeeping on the job affects safety and profitability (presented by E.K. McConkey). B

PBA has launched a new look and feel to its web site, www.PaBuilders.org. The site, which offers access to industry data, housing trends, member benefit information and more, is free for all PBA members. Changes to the site include a refreshed color scheme, updated navigation menus and up-to-date industry news. PBA’s home page now features “QuickClicks,” an area dedicated to breaking home-building industry news from across the country. QuickClicks can be found under the main navigation menu at www.PaBuilders.org. This area also features scrolling business news, such as stock market updates. If you do not have your member username and password, please contact Chris Anderson at 800-692-7339, ext. 3011, or at canderson@PaBuilders.org to have it sent to you.

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PBA initiatives passed by General Assembly

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Infrastructure support: Act 63 and 64 of 2008 will provide $1.2 billion in water and infrastructure funding, a positive for members of PBA. Act 63 supplies $800 million for water and sewer, storm water, flood protection and dam safety projects, while Act 64 allowed the voter referendum for $400 million in borrowing for water and sewer projects (passed by voters Nov. 4). Honest contractor protection: Act 132 of 2008 (previously SB 100) was signed by the governor in November and is an example of PBA’s defensive priorities. While PBA had opposed any type of contractor registration for many years, the association was able to reach a compromise in this legislation, as it voided most local licensing requirements and included no guarantee fund that would have required good contractors to pay for scam artists. Blight no more: HB 2188, also known as the Abandoned and Blighted Property Conservatorship Act, includes an amendment supported by PBA and a coalition, headed by the PA Association of Realtors. While this bill was fast-tracked at the end of the session, PBA along with coalition partners were able to postpone movement of this bill, in order to get additional needed amendments. When the bill was signed into law, it included language that is beneficial to lending and building communities. Getting technical: Act 106 of 2008 establishes a technical review and advisory committee to advise the legislature and executive branch agencies on matters relating to the state’s Uniform Construction Code. Through the new expert review process, only building code updates appropriate for Pennsylvania will be adopted. Scrapping theft: Act 113 of 2008 requires scrap processors and recycling facility operators to collect information when they purchase scrap material exceeding $100 in an effort to thwart criminals who are stealing scrap metal from building sites and other sources. PBA joined a coalition of more than 50 organizations that was successful in getting the bill moved over the opposition of the scrap dealers association.

Protecting builders from unfavorable legislation Impact fees: In 2007, HB 72 proposed development impact fees as high as $7,500 per home to provide revenue for school districts. PBA members opposed the impact fees as they would increase the cost of housing by burdening a select group of taxpayers. HB 72 died when the legislature’s two-year session ended in 2008. No moratorium: PBA members opposed HB 904, a bill that would have allowed a year or more of delays by permitting local governments to impose a moratorium while they updated long-range plans, development ordinances or zoning ordinances. Opposition from PBA and other groups helped kill the bill, which died with the conclusion of the session.

PA House and Senate look different in 2009

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ith the spotlight on the presidential election and its historic outcomes, the changes in Pennsylvania’s legislature may have taken a back seat in some analyses. But here is a snapshot of the state’s election and how the monetary support of Pennsylvania Builders Association’s political action committee, PaCAH, worked for members in this election cycle. Attorney General Tom Corbett won re-election by a small margin over challenger John Morganelli. He was the only statewide candidate supported by PaCAH. Overall, the Democrats increased their control of the Pennsylvania House with a 104 to 99 majority. For the past two years, Democrats had controlled the chamber by a onevote margin. In the state Senate, there was a different story with the Republicans increasing their majority by one seat, now maintaining a 10-seat majority over the Democrats. On the national scene, where NAHB’s BUILDPAC supports campaigns, Democrats gained seats in the House and Senate. At press time, the Senate will include 58 Democrats, 40 Republicans and two Independents. Democrats will have at least 257 of 435 seats in Congress, with a few races undecided at press time. U.S. Rep. Phil English, R-Erie, lost to Kathy Dahlkemper, in the only party change for Pennsylvania’s congressional districts. In news about specific state legislators, after an early scare on election night, Rep. Bill DeWeese, D-Greene, who has served as speaker of the state House, won re-election by a wider margin than anticipated.

In the state Senate, the late Sen. Jim Rhoades, R-Schuylkill, won his re-election bid posthumously, which will require a special election to be held in 2009 to decide who will fill his seat. Rhoades died in an auto accident in October. Some incumbents were unsuccessful in their re-election bids. The biggest surprise was Rep. Dan Surra, D-Elk, who lost his re-election bid to Matt Gabler. Also, Rep. Vince Biancucci, D-Beaver; Rep. Frank Andrew Shimkus, D-Lackawanna; and Rep. Chris King, D-Bucks, lost their bids for re-election. PBA member Dick Gokey lost his bid against incumbent David Kessler, D-Berks. In good news for PBA, the referendum question regarding $1.2 billion in funding for water and sewer infrastructure, passed by a wide margin. Overall, of the candidates running for state Senate, 100 percent of those supported by PACH were elected. In the state House, 90 percent of those supported were successful. In the 11 seats where no incumbent was running for a House seat, only one supported candidate did not win his election bid. PaCAH supported the following individuals entering the House for the first time: Robert Matzie, D-Allegheny; Dom Costa, D-Allegheny; Carl Metzgar, R-Somerset; Bryan Barbin, D-Cambria; Sheryl Delozier, R-Cumberland; Tim Briggs, D-Montgomery; Nick Miccarelli, R-Delaware; Vanessa Brown, D-Philadelphia; and Will Tallman, R-Adams. In the Senate, PaCAH supported the following winning candidates: Lloyd Smucker, R-Lancaster; Gene Yaw, R-Lycoming; and Richard Alloway, R-Franklin. member insider • Keystone Builder

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Facebooking your way to advocacy success by Stephanie Vance ant to advocate for reduced taxes? Pro-business trade policies? Regulatory reform? How about doing something about gas prices? Whatever issue interests you, from the incredibly controversial to the not-so-much, one of your first stops should be Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn or any other social network. On Facebook alone, you can join one of more than 500 groups advocating vigorously for (or against) each of the positions noted above. MySpace has well over 30,000 groups dedicated to politics and the government. On LinkedIn, you can connect with many policymakers (and, more importantly, their staffs) from around the country and around the world. Associations and special interest groups are starting to make their presence known on these sites as well, with their own groups dedicated to providing citizen advocates with the resources they need to be effective in creating policy change. No longer simply venues for the youngish crowd to text others of the youngish crowd in their incomprehensible language, social networks have clearly moved into the mainstream. Just follow these five simple steps and you’ll be “friending” along with the best of them in no time. 1. Sign Up: Setting up a profile on any of the big name sites, like MySpace, Facebook or LinkedIn, is usually a simple three- or four-step process. In posting your profile, remember that other advocates, prospective employers and your professional colleagues might be taking a look. In fact, it’s standard practice now to check these sites before entering into any business transactions. So, this probably isn’t the place for your “look how much tequila I can drink” photos from college. 2. Explore what’s out there: In addition to finding your friends, colleagues and neighbors online, search for individuals and groups with an interest in your cause. Start by looking at the MySpace government and poli-

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tics groups page or by searching by keyword on the Facebook groups page (just click on the groups icon). While some of the groups out there are quite frankly, a little vitriolic, you’ll find many serious groups as well including PBA. Once you’ve ascertained which groups are on the “up-and-up” (a quick look at the profiles of some of the members and the web site of the sponsoring organization will help you figure that out), consider joining one or two that seem to share your perspective. You will have the option to protect your privacy by deciding how much information to share. Keep a watchful eye out for any groups associated with an “offline” association or organization to which you already belong — they’re the perfect venue for learning about issues and online advocacy. 3. Start your own group or network: Even with all the groups out there, you may not find one that addresses your advocacy issue in the same way, with the same message or from the same perspective as you. The solution is simple: Start your own group! For most of the sites, it’s as easy as setting up a new “group” profile. 4. Promote, promote, promote: You’ll need to let others know about your group or niche network and its purpose. Fortunately, social networks make this easy. Some approaches to consider include: a. Use the “find a friend” feature to make a request to connect online with anyone who you think might be interested in your cause.

b. Post comments in public posting areas of existing groups and potential advocates. Be careful to post useful, substantive information that “entices” people back to your group (as opposed to promoting without providing value). c. Include a link to your new group as part of your e-mail signature to drive traffic. d. Post a question that invites feedback from others. e. If you have a budget, consider purchasing “pay per click” ads. Most sites allow you to set a low budget threshold. 5. Care and Feeding: Review, refresh and reinvigorate regularly: You don’t really have to reinvent the wheel in order to provide an ongoing flow of fresh information. If you already have a blog, be sure to include a link on your profile pages. Post any photos, videos and links to relevant materials that you feel will help group members make the case for your issue. Social networks are not only fun, but a great way to get your advocacy message out there. By connecting with like-minded people online, you may just create that critical mass necessary to make a difference — for your community, for your country or for the world at large. Inspired? Then get online and get advocating! Stephanie Vance, the Advocacy Guru, is author of “Government by the People: How to Communicate with Congress” and a former Capitol Hill veteran. She lives and works in Washington, D.C., offering workshops and advice on effective advocacy. Find out more at www. advocacyguru.com. s

I Keystone Builder • member insider

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Home improvement contractor registration

Trust PBA to walk you through it You have questions about the new law requiring home improvement contractors to register with the state. PBA has the answers you need. Turn to us for any concerns you have. First, a few basic facts you need to know about the law „ Contractors and subcontractors must be registered before July 1, 2009 „ Registration fee is $50, and registration is valid for two years „ Any contractor and subcontractor doing more than $5,000 in business annually must register „ Builders who only build new homes are exempt from registration „ Contractors and subcontractors must carry at least $50,000 worth of both personal injury liability

insurance and property damage insurance

When can I register? PBA is working hand-in-hand with the state Attorney General’s office to finalize the application process. PBA anticipates that to be completed in early 2009. Once completed, PBA will begin an extensive education campaign to inform members about how the law might affect them, along with detailed information on how to properly register.

How do I register? In early 2009, applications will be available through PBA at www.PaBuilders.org or by calling 800-692-7339 or 717-7304380. Model contracts, which PBA is drafting with its legal counsel and the Attorney General’s office, will also be available in early 2009. Rest assured, PBA will help walk all members through the application process. We are here to help you register and understand this new law.

Still have questions? PBA has answers This is an introduction to the new home improvement contractor registration law. More info is available by calling Jill Pento at PBA at 800-692-7339 or 717-730-4380. KSBM_0901.indd 13

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Warmth from the floor up by M.H. Morrison adiant floor heating can be an efficient solution to difficult-to-heat spaces, according to experts, but it isn’t always the answer.

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Warm floors, really? Radiant floor heating systems supply heat directly to the floor, warming the people and objects in the room from this “hot” surface. These heating systems also depend heavily on convection, the natural circulation of heat within a room, caused by heat rising from the floor. There are three types of radiant floor heat: radiant air floors (air is the heatcarrying medium); electric radiant floors; and hot water (hydronic) radiant floors. These three floor types can be further classified as a wet or dry installation. In the wet version, the cables or tubing carrying the heat are embedded within a solid floor. The installer also can run the cables or tubing in the air space beneath the floor for a dry installation. Other options include suspending the tubing or cables and reflective insulation underneath the subfloor between the joists or installing the heating system between the two layers of subfloor.

Just say yes to radiant Radiant heating has a number of advantages: it is more efficient than baseboard heating and usually more efficient than forced-air heating because no energy is lost through ducts, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Hydronic (liquid-based) systems use little electricity and can also be heated with a wide variety of energy sources causing them to be the most popular systems. Chris Meinhart, president of Hart Builders in Media, Delaware County, who has installed a broad range of radiant floor heating systems, said that in some applications radiant floor heating makes sense, such as garages and basements during new construction.

Top: This distribution manifold contains the supply lines from the boiler to a radiant floor heating system. Bottom: Radiant floor heating uses circulating heated water or electric cable, mesh or film heaters to provide warmth to a home.

For some experts, electric radiant floors are a good option for additions onto homes into which it would be impractical to extend the heating system.

Just say no to radiant However, radiant floor heating is not always the most efficient. If the house is small- to medium-sized and well insulated or uses advanced construction methods, radiant will not save the homeowner more, according to RadiantDesignInstitute.com. Meinhart, who has radiant floor heating in his own home, said that

he has not seen significant savings in terms of heating costs. In terms of comfort, the flooring is great, warming the home evenly. He added that because most homeowners want air conditioning, ductwork is run that can easily be suited for a heating system, making radiant flooring systems less financially attractive for heating the main home. In commercial applications like a warehouse radiant floor heating may make sense, since there is often no need for air conditioning, Meinhart said. s January/February 2009 • Keystone Builder

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Pittsburgh’s Bureau of Building Inspection chief is a man with a mission by M.H. Morrison ittsburgh’s new chief of the Bureau of Building Inspection is facing head on the challenges of a department that has been under fire. Sergei C. Matveiev, AIA/MCP, was appointed to his position by Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl Oct. 13, 2008, after a nationwide search to find a new BBI director. In a press release, the mayor said, “Sergei scored the highest in the qualification testing and holds the technical and leadership skills necessary to rebuild the organization from the ground up.” In addition to being a registered architect, Matveiev had worked as a city building plan examiner since June 2004. At the same time Matveiev was appointed, the city completed a review of its public safety bureau (under which BBI falls) and the recommendations from this review included reorganizing the bureau, specifically assigning its inspectors to six police station zones, ensuring proper training and certification of employees, and equipping them with the proper tools and technology. In addition to regulating the construction, demolition and occupancy of all buildings and structures and issuing permits for new construction as well as for repair, alteration and additions to public and private build-

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ings in Pittsburgh, Matveiev’s bureau also oversees enforcement of codes that deal with quality of life issues, such as weeds, debris and blighted properties. As part of these efforts, the bureau has been using handheld computers, essentially small laptops, since September 2008. They use wireless cell phone cards to receive and transmit information, like the laptops used in many police cruisers In time, it is expected that all of the bureau’s inspectors will use this new system with the goal of improving quality and efficiency in code enforcement. “We’re figuring out the best way for them to be used,” Matveiev said. The bureau is also working to improve its permitting process. “The big problem with permitting is that there are a lot of agencies involved,” Matveiev said. He said the process can be cumbersome and needs to be streamlined. One idea is bringing all of the services together, so that those seeking permits do not have to run from one place to another for individual approvals. The bureau has been using contacts in private business to identify builders’ concerns and ways to address them. While the studies and discussions are looking at how to help the bureau move forward, large backlogs are facing the department now.

Sergei C. Matveiev

Matveiev said staffing issues have led to slow response time for the permitting BBI must do. The bureau is in the process of “addressing staffing issues and is working to get on top of inspections,” he said, adding that the shortfall in staff this year was the result of retirements. While the staff is fully certified, Matveiev said that he wants to increase the number of certifications employees carry, so they are multi-disciplinary. One of the goals of all of these changes is to make Pittsburgh a place that embraces developers and builders. The city does have a number of large projects underway from construction at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh to the Gates Center at Carnegie Mellon University. Matveiev added that the city is also proud of the fact that much of the construction is recognized for green building. “We want to be pro-development in the city. The mayor has been very vocal about that,” Matveiev said. s

Concrete lite

Autoclaved aerated concrete economically green

Autoclaved aerated concrete is produced in a variety of sizes and shapes. It can save time and money on the job site, in part, because of its light weight.

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by M.H. Morrison utoclaved aerated concrete may be new to the U.S. market, but it has been used as building material in Europe for decades. AAC is a precast structural product made from all-natural raw materials with the strength of standard masonry. It has been around in some form since 1914, when the Swedes discovered that a mixture of cement, lime, water

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and sand expanded by adding aluminum powder. This early material was developed into today’s AAC, which is also referred to as autoclaved cellular concrete, according to the Partnership for Advancing Technology in Housing. The product is popular as a building material because its light weight saves time on site and reduces transportation costs. PATH noted that it can be sawed,

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drilled, nailed and milled, making it highly adaptable. AAC units are available in numerous shapes and sizes. Panels are available in thicknesses 8 to 12 inches, 24 inches wide and are up to 20 feet long. Blocks come 24, 32 and 48 inches long, 4 to 16 inches thick and 8 inches high. With an R-value of approximately 1.25 per inch, depending on its density, AAC significantly outperforms, in terms of insulation, conventional concrete block or poured concrete, according to PATH. However, unfinished exterior walls should be covered because of the opencell nature of the product. In addition to its thermal insulation properties, AAC provides acoustic insulation and fire and termite resistance. To manufacture AAC, Portland cement is mixed with lime, silica sand or recycled fly ash (a byproduct from coal-burning power plants), water, and aluminum powder or paste and poured into a mold. The reaction between the aluminum and concrete causes microscopic hydrogen bubbles to form, expanding the concrete. After evaporation of the hydrogen, the now highly closed-cell, aerated concrete is cut to size and formed by steamcuring in a pressurized chamber called an autoclave. Michael W. Grutzeck, professor of materials at the Materials Research Institute at Penn State University, wrote that building a home from AAC in most cases would cost more than a similarly sized wood-framed house because the product is not readily available. He added that the lower labor costs for AAC will eventually close the affordability gap as AAC block and panels become more widely available. Another concrete product that is both lightweight and saves time on the job site is the Ecolite Wall System, which marries light-gauge steel framing with lightweight cellular concrete. The product by Ecolite Concrete USA is made to a builder’s specification and shipped to the site ready to erect. According to the manufacturer, Ecolite walls, like AAC, are sound resistant, have good insulating properties, and eliminate issues of mold, mildew and termite infestation. Ecolite is primarily used in largescale military, government, high rise and multi-use developments. s

The ACC block being sawed is composed of 70 percent recycled flyash that was a byproduct of coalfired power plant.

GO GREEN! LET US HELP YOU GROW YOUR BUSINESS . V ISIT ONE OF THESE LOCATIONS :

ALLENTOWN, PA 18103 (610)797-4996 (800)950-9558 FAX(610)797-6112 MECHANICSBURG, PA 17055 (717)697-9209 (800)252-4201 FAX(717)697-9501 LEETSDALE, PA 15056 (724) 251-0555 (800) 516-1681 FAX(724)251-0777 WILKES-BARRE, PA 18702 (570)824-9879 (800)955-9339 FAX(570)824-9848

More and more homeowners are thinking “green” when it comes to remodeling the exterior of their home. Norandex is committed to providing energy-efficient, renewable/recyclable/sustainable products that are both environmentally friendly, and provide you the opportunity to market legitimately "green" products for long-lasting home owner benefits with minimal environmental impact. Best of all, these “green” products come in a variety of beautiful colors and styles, that require practically no maintenance, and are strongly warranted for their quality and performance. Contact your Norandex representative about the benefits of the following “green” products: SIDING

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January/February 2009 • Keystone Builder

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Add it up

BENEFITS. LOTS OF BENEFITS. THAT’S WHAT PBA PROVIDES. GO AHEAD, ADD ‘EM UP — YOU’LL SEE MEMBERSHIP MAKES SENSE, AND CENTS. PA One-Call • Member Rebate Program • Housing news clips • Hire a lobbyist to advocate • Buy Now co-op advertising program • Access to regulatory consultant • Access to UCC consultant • PBA educational seminars • Keystone Builder magazine • TradeSecrets e-newsletter • Discounted rates on PHRC seminars • Access to PR consultant • Associates Council • Developers Council • Networking opportunities • Aflac medical / disability insurance • Web site with homebuilder info • Insurance programs • Workforce training certification • Access to PBA field representative • Marketing advantage • Builders Gala • Office supply discounts • Discounted insurance rates • Issue advocacy • program • Industry Action Fund

Membership pays Contact PBA: 717-730-4380 • 800-692-7339 • www.PaBuilders.org

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Adopt a cell phone policy for your business by Eric Wise, Editor s cell phones have become ever-present during the last decade, they have also caused problems for some employers. Cell phones may easily become a distraction on the job, a major hindrance when used while driving and a drain on company finances if they are used excessively. Many employers are responding by adopting cell phone policies for their employees. Policies may be adjusted to the needs of a particular business. First, a cell phone policy can be used to promote safety by discouraging employees from using their phones while driving. Studies have shown the dangers of driving while distracted by a phone call, and it only gets more dangerous when drivers try to read text displayed on a phone. To address this, a policy could prohibit employees from taking work calls while driving, ban the use of phones by drivers in company vehicles or require that company-owned cell phones are turned off while someone is driving. Second, a company may develop a policy aimed at cutting use of personal cell phones during the work day. Asking employees to not use personal cell phones at work may be impractical, but that shouldn’t stop employers from trying to make improvements regarding work-place cell phone use. A policy could require employees to leave cell phones at their desks when going into meetings or to keep their phones on silent mode at the office. Employees can also contribute to a

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better work environment using simple courtesy – like walking to a separate area when having personal phone conversations. Third, a cell phone policy should include guidelines for appropriate use and responsibility for company-owned cell phones and related accessories. A policy may allow occasional replacement of batteries and chargers, while requiring the employee to pay for excessive replacements. Damage or loss of the cell phone itself may be handled on a case-by-case basis, especially when the company’s service plan includes device insurance. Finally, one of the most sensitive areas that could be covered by a cell phone policy attempts to limit use of a company-owned and paid cell phones. Employees with different assignments and areas of responsibility may use their phones much differently. In some cases, it may be possible to set a limit on an employee’s cell phone minutes. After the limit is reached, the employee would be responsible for the charges. In other cases, a statement may provide documentation of how much of the usage was personal or legitimate business. These guidelines should help you understand the need for a policy about cell phone use and the issues to address when developing a policy. A written policy sets standards that may be used when issues arise – a massive improvement over trying to curtail problems without any guidelines. After drafting a policy, executives may want to have it reviewed by an attorney to ensure it will be enforceable and will not cause legal problems in the future. s

January/February 2009 • Keystone Builder

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PUT PENNSYLVANIA’S POLITICAL HOUSE IN ORDER

DONATE TO PaCAH TODAY

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Please tear out and complete this page and return to PaCAH at 600 N. 12th St., Lemoyne PA, 17043. For questions, please call PBA at 800-692-7339.

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Take a look at a few things PBA’s advocacy has done for you „ Created the Uniform Construction growth and development in local and not an arbitrary value „Led efforts to ensure state Code, which established uniform communities „Fought impact fees, arguing that building standards across environmental legislation Pennsylvania fees should be based on a scientific balances competing demands „ Rallied to stall unnecessary building formula reflecting the actual impact of environmental protection moratoriums that stifle economic a home will have in a community, and economic growth

CONTACT INFORMATION Name ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Company name _______________________________________________________________________________________ Address ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Phone _______________________________ E-mail _________________________________________________________ Local association _____________________________________________________________________________________ Please list any legislator(s) you prefer to contact ___________________________________________________________________

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Member spotlight

e te n ands ion

Ron Brungart of Ron Brungart Contracting, Clinton County, believes in “quality not quantity.”

Ron Brungart Contracting Hands-on touch

by Tess Wittler or 37 years, Ron Brungart of Ron Brungart Contracting has been building structures with his hands. After high school he followed his father’s footsteps into farming, but he soon recognized that farming wasn’t what he wanted to do for the rest of his life. “I always liked to build things,” said Brungart. His cousin suggested he call a local builder. That call introduced him to his building career. Brungart started out as a laborer and then was placed on the concrete crew. But it wasn’t until he began framing houses and working with lumber that he really considered the future. “I started to think that maybe someday I wouldn’t mind getting into business for myself.” It would be 15 more years and a few more experiences of working for others before he was coaxed into taking that step toward becoming a business owner in 1987. Brungart is a sole proprietor who works with subcontractors to complete projects. These are mostly kitchen and bathroom remodels along with building additions, although he’s also built a few homes from the ground up over the years. He’s located in the heart of Pennsylvania, Clinton County, where the West Branch of the Susquehanna River runs through the quaint town of Lock Haven. When asked if this year’s down economy has affected business, Brungart commented that so far it hasn’t had too much of an impact on his business — at least right now he’s staying busy. Brungart said his biggest challenge in today’s business climate is the rising costs of materials, and he addresses this issue by adding an escalation clause in his contracts.

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“I explain the clause to my customers so there are no surprises when materials cost more than the contract allotted.” Not unexpectedly, Brungart said his approach to his business is “quality not quantity.” This is probably one of the reasons why he’s stayed in business for more than two decades. “I want [the job] done right and treat it as if I’m working on my own home,” he said. He also works closely with clients to advise them on smart design choices. “When a client brings me a sketch, I point out where some adjustments can be made so it will fit better into their home,” Brungart explained. Every day holds something different, but he knows that adaptation is an important element to success. He recalled one such occasion where he had to accommodate an odd homeowner request. “[The subs and I] were finishing up a fairly large addition, and the husband came to me and said, ‘We’ve got the rods and curtains for you to hang.’ I sort of chuckled while explaining that I didn’t hang curtains. It became quite clear that the customer wasn’t going to take ‘no’ for an answer. So I got out my ladder and hung his curtains. The guys on the crew never let me forget that one!” When Brungart isn’t building, he enjoys shooting. Just like designing the perfectly suited kitchen or bathroom for his clients, shooting takes the same methodical thinking, dedication and precision. When out-of-state licenses are available, he makes the trip to Wyoming to hunt elk, and he unwinds by reloading shells for his rifles. “It is interesting working with different [gun] powders and bullet weights to try to get my gun to perform the best it can.” s

Business quick facts: Ron Brungart Contracting • Years in Business: 22 years • Counties of operation: Clinton and Centre counties • Local association: Clinton County Builders Association • Local association involvement: 2008 president January/February 2009 • Keystone Builder

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Final word

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Incentives help builders sell homes By Eric Wise, Editor s builders throughout the United States work to overcome trying conditions in some markets and beat the competition in others, they have developed strategies and incentives to help sell their homes. Many builders are offering upgrades, including granite countertops, expanded suites, swimming pools and sunrooms to customers buying a new home. Others offer buyers a new plasma-screen television with their purchase. Some builders have gone even further, offering incentives far beyond these perks. Michael Crews Development may be the most extreme example. According to KGTV 10 News, San Diego, the company recently ran a buy one, get one free campaign. Buyers of a Royal View Estate home in San Pasqual Valley, where homes start at $1.6 million, received a new 2,000-square-foot townhome in Escondido. Shea Homes, builder of “green” homes, has offered its buyers in California, Washington, Florida and Arizona a solar roof with a home purchase. The electric-generating solar roof was provided with homes meeting conditions set by the company. PBA member Bill Brottman’s new home package, which included a new car, enabled him to keep selling when other builders saw their sales stall. Brottman sold nine homes in the first month in business in Lords Valley. Outside the office, visitors can check out a 2008 Toyota Yaris, the fuel-efficient car that comes with a new home. Brottman says the package typically costs about $225,000 for a three-bedroom home and the Yaris. Finally, developer Clark Butler of City Centre Properties combined a home with a doctor in his project that opened in Atlanta this year. Individuals buying a residence in The Mansion will automatically be signed up for MD on Call, a concierge medical service, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. This type of medical service, valued at several thousand dollars annually, is provided by doctors who offer full-service medical care in patients’ homes. s

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PBA PBA Premier Premier Partners Partners the PBa Premier Partners program is energized by an elite group of the PBa Premier program elite group businesses takingPartners a leadership role inis energized promotingby theangrowth of of businesses taking a leadership role in promoting the growth of Pennsylvania’s housing industry. Premier Partners provide non-dues Pennsylvania’s housing industry. provide revenues that help expand PBa’s Premier services Partners to members. nextnon-dues time you revenues that help expand PBa’s services to members. next time you are bidding out a project, please keep our Premier Partners in mind. are bidding out a project, please keep our Premier Partners in mind. Gold level sponsor Gold sponsor Wellslevel Fargo Home mortgage Wells Fargo mortgage By utilizing our Home extended rate lock products, we offer our builder partners the By utilizing our extended rate lock we offer our builder partners us theto opportunity to eliminate market risk,products, easing buyer concerns and allowing opportunity to eliminate market risk, easing buyer concerns and allowing us sell more homes more profitably. Contact Mark Mellas at 570-499-3204 fortomore sell more homes more profitably. Contact Mark Mellas at 570-499-3204 for more information. information. Silver level sponsors Silver level Home sponsors american Bank american Home Bank American Home Bank is a national bank providing retail and joint venture mortgage American Home Bank is a national bank providing and joint venture mortgage solutions. The bank specializes in residential financeretail including construction and solutions. The bank specializes in residential finance including construction andnational construction-to-permanent lending, offering products from more than a dozen construction-to-permanent lending, offering products from more than a dozen national sources. The bank’s mission of “helping people buy, afford, and enjoy the homeowner sources. The bank’s mission of “helping people buy, afford, and enjoy the homeowner dream” is a cornerstone of all we do. Contact Yana Peifer at 717-285-6688 for more dream” is a cornerstone of all we do. Contact Yana Peifer at 717-285-6688 for more information. information. ProBuild ProBuild ProBuild is dedicated to the building industry. ProBuild has been, and will always be, ProBuild is dedicated the products building industry. ProBuild has asbeen, and will alwaysand be, on the cutting edge oftonew and services, as well providing technical on the cutting edge of new products and services, as well as providing technical and building industry knowledge. Our involvement at the national, state and local builders building industry knowledge. Our involvement national, state and localcontact builders association is extremely important to ProBuild.atForthemore information, please association is extremely important to ProBuild. For more information, please contact Michael Kurpiel, market development manager, at 800-883-8800, ext 665. Michael Kurpiel, market development manager, at 800-883-8800, ext 665. First national Bank FirstNational national First BankBank is the Premier Partner for both business and personal banking First National Bank is the toPremier for bothneeds business personal banking needs. We are dedicated servingPartner the financial of theandcommunities in which needs. We are dedicated to serving the financial needs of the communities which we serve and have an expanded network of more than 215 banking officesinand 240 we serve and have an expanded network of more than 215 banking offices and ATMs across 35 counties. For more information, visit a local branch, call 800-555-240 ATMs counties. For more information, visit a local branch, call 800-5555455across or visit35 www.fnb-online.com. 5455 or visit www.fnb-online.com. ilevel By WeyerHaeuser ilevel WeyerHaeuser iLevel isBy Weyerhaeuser’s integrated residential framing business resulting in a iLevel is Weyerhaeuser’s residential in aa seamless, unified solutionintegrated for residential buildersframing throughbusiness dealersresulting – offering seamless, unified solution for residential builders through dealers – offering a coordinated network of support for all structural framing materials. By combining coordinated network of support for all structural framing materials. By combining Weyerhaeuser’s high-quality products and services from well-known brands like Weyerhaeuser’s high-quality products and servicesandfrom well-known brands like Trus Joist and Structurwood, with its distribution technology capabilities, iLevel Trus Joist and Structurwood, with its distribution and technology capabilities, iLevel efficiently supplies customers with all the necessary components for building the efficiently supplies customers with all the necessary components for building the residential structural frame, and solving builder and customer needs around that residential structural and solving builder andframing customer needs around that frame. To learn aboutframe, the iLevel line of residential products, design software frame. To learn about the iLevel line of residential framing products, design software tools, technical support and extensive distribution network, visit www.iLevel.com or tools, technical support extensive distribution or call 800-678-8787 for and a structural frame specialistnetwork, or dealervisit nearwww.iLevel.com you. call 800-678-8787 for a structural frame specialist or dealer near you.

mark mellas (far right) and tom coronato (second from right), both of Wells Fargo Home mortgage mark mellas (far right) andmeet tom coronato (second right), ofboth of Wells Fargo Home mortgage and PBa Premier Partners, with kenneth and from kay Brown kenneth e. Brown Building & and PBa Premier meet kenneth Brown meet of kenneth e. Brown Building & 19 remodeling at oct.Partners, 26’s meet thewith Builder eventand nearkay reading. the Builder, which featured remodeling oct.than 26’s 130 meetassociate the Builder event near reading. meetopportunity the Builder,towhich 19 builders and atmore members, provide a unique meetfeatured one-on-one builders and more than 130cultivating associate members, provide a unique support opportunity meetPremier one-on-one with homebuilders to begin new business relationships. fromtoPBa’s with homebuilders to begin new business relationships. supportthefrom PBa’s Premier Partner sponsors makes suchcultivating events possible – in addition to supporting association’s many Partner sponsors makes such events possible – in addition to supporting the association’s many government affairs, communications and educational programs. in appreciation for their financial government affairs, communications and educational programs. in appreciationtoforlearn theirmore financial support, Premier Partners gain additional, valuable exposure to homebuilders. about support, Premier Partners gain additional, valuable exposureatto800-692-7339, homebuilders. ext. to learn more about PBa’s Premier Partner program, please contact Bill lapitsky 3030. PBa’s Premier Partner program, please contact Bill lapitsky at 800-692-7339, ext. 3030.

Bronze level sponsors Bronze level sponsors eam associates eam associates EAM provides a range of services to meet your project needs: energy/green design EAM provides range home of services meet your project needs: energy/green design services, plan areview; energyto ratings; inspections/commissioning; warranty services, plan review; home energy ratings; inspections/commissioning; warranty troubleshooting; and non-invasive diagnostic testing. EAM strives for perfect balance troubleshooting; and non-invasive diagnostic between our services and our client’s needs. testing. EAM strives for perfect balance between our services and our client’s needs. Pennsylvania Housing Finance agency Pennsylvania Housing Finance agencylove to do business with you but they Do you have potential customers say they’d Do you have potential customers say they’d love to do business you Agency’s but they don’t have the extra money? Learn about Pennsylvania Housingwith Finance don’t have the extra money? Learn about Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency’s homeownership programs and their Renovate and Repair home repair program. homeownership programs and their Renovate and Repair home repair program. residential Warranty comPany llc residential By providing anWarranty RWC-insuredcomPany warranty llc on your new or remodeled homes, you By providingyour an RWC-insured on your new remodeled homes, you distinguish company fromwarranty the competition. Onlyorhighly qualified, financially distinguish your company from the competition. Only highly qualified, financially sound, ethical builders become RWC members. RWC’s warranty also provides the sound, builders dispute becomeprocess RWC members. warrantyand alsobinding providesarbitration, the benefit ethical of an effective including RWC’s free mediation benefit of an effective dispute process including free mediation and binding arbitration, if necessary. RWC offers a variety of warranty choices including our exclusive ifCustomized necessary.State RWC Warranty offers a variety of warranty including our ofexclusive providing structuralchoices coverage from day closing at a low, Customized State Warranty providing structural coverage from day of closing at a low, flat rate for homes priced up to $1 million. flat rate for homes priced up to $1 million.

For more information on the PBA Premier Partners program, please contact Bill Lapitsky at PBA at 800-692-7339, ext. 3030, For moreorinformation onblapitsky@PaBuilders.org. the PBA Premier Partners program, please contact Lapitskyonline at PBA 800-692-7339, ext. 3030, via e-mail at More information is alsoBill available at at www.PaBuilders.org. or via e-mail at blapitsky@PaBuilders.org. More information is also available online at www.PaBuilders.org. KSBM_0901.indd 23

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Keystone Builder - Jan/Feb 2009