Robbie Jester, Remodeler’s President
Remodelers Christmas Social
December 13, 6 – 8:30pm
Five Points – Event Room
Robert Jester, Branch Manager
Ferguson – a Wolseley Company
7905 North Point Blvd. Winston-Salem · NC · 27106
T: +1 (336) 759 0253 · F: +1 (336) 759 0857 C: +1 (336) 345 3025
2016 Leadership Report
President, Professional Women in Building
In September, the PWB met in my showroom at Murray Supply Company.
It was nice to have an offsite meeting, in a big open space, while enjoying delicious pizza and wings from 66 Pizzeria.
The first order of business was about the upcoming Habitat Women’s Work Series classes being held in September. Here is the list of volunteers and classes that will be held this month:
September 15th-Thursday- 6-7:30pm- Energy Efficiency– Cathy & Miranda
September 24th– Saturday- 9-10:30am– Sissy
September 29th– Thursday- 6-7:30pm- Caulking Tips- Debbie & Tracy
Habitat is throwing a closing reception on December 15th from 6pm-7:30pm for the Women’s Work Series participants and the coaches. If you want to attend, just click on the link below to register. Make sure you signify that you are a “coach” somewhere on the form.
The second topic of conversation, was about picking officers for our PWB group for next year. I am very happy to announce the following people will be leading our great group next year:
President- Miranda Kempton
Vice-President- Jennifer Sapp
Secretary- Jody Welch
Treasurer- Judy Redding
Congratulations to all, and I know you are going to do a fabulous job!!
Also, at our September meeting, we collected items from a “Family Wish List” that Debbie Fletcher got for us from the Ronald McDonald House. We were able to fill up almost three boxes worth of items needed for the families staying at the house. I was overwhelmed by the amount of items all the ladies brought in for donation. Thank you all for your support. A special “thank you” goes to Debbie for getting that list for us, and for taking all the material up to the Ronald McDonald House.
Our next meeting will be on October 4th, at Sheila Wilson’s house for our annual Build Pac Poker night. Hope to see everyone there!!
Murray Supply Company
260 Olive Street
Winston-Salem, NC 27103
The October 2016 meeting was held at Allegacy Federal Credit Union
as a Lunch and Learn event presentation by Kurt and Maryann Hauser of ActionCoach. Maryann provided a very informative coaching session that enlightened us on these success strategies: Mastery (Eliminate Chaos), Niche (Predictable Cash Flow), Leverage (Efficiency & Systems), Team (Structure for Growth), Synergy (Well-Oiled Machine) and Results (Owner’s Personal Growth). Thanks Maryann – you are awesome!
Ongoing Fundraiser: Support Career Technical Education by purchasing a great t-shirt at http://home-builders-ws.myshopify.com/ or on the HBAWS members’ only Facebook page. Check out a small sample of the cool graphics/colors below – please share the website link with your friends and family.
Upcoming HBAWS Event:
- 11/15: November HBAWS Membership Meeting – Old Salem Visitor’s Center
Save the Date: Our next AMC event will be January 19 as our Holiday & 2017 Planning luncheon – stay tuned for the location!
I have truly enjoyed being your AMC Chair this year – we have had a great year together and look forward to the new year ahead with Wes Hammond as our Chair.
Enjoy the upcoming holidays with your loved ones and be sure to take time and give thanks for a great 2016 and the many opportunities for success in 2017.
Allegacy Federal Credit Union
AMC Guest Article
Value in Your Landscape
Jeff Allen of JALA, Jeff Allen Landscape Architecture, LLC
In today’s economy many of us are looking to get the ‘The Best Deal.’ The best deals are not always the lowest price especially when you are investing in your home. Most clients discuss what they hope to get a return on from their investment and are not willing to spend a penny more. As a designer I recommend to my clients to look for value.
I define value both from a market stand point where prices are well defined i.e. stone/plant material cost per square foot to hourly labor rates. Beyond that I delve into a subjective value; the role of the process of that leads to the finished product. What was the experience during the design phase, construction phase and post construction. Were we responsive to your questions, concerns, did we give you all your options to make intelligent decisions that you are happy with the end result? Together these make an intrinsic value. Our role in this is one of advocacy for our clients and guidance for the contractor to ensure a smooth rewarding experience; hence it is good for everyone.
Many contractors are competing to stay in business and the successful ones are doing so by the value they bring to the table- expertise, professional accreditation, liability insurance coverage and dedication to their craft. When interviewing contractors (beyond seeing the quality their work-see my previous article on hiring a landscape architect) I look for intrinsic value mainly with regard to service. Landscape materials are relatively fixed based on current market pricing and your contractor should be able to obtain the best material at the best price effectively and efficiently. A landscape professional should have all of his professional licenses, insurances and have knowledge of local regulations. Most importantly how does your landscape professional communicate? This is critical during the construction and maintenance phase regarding scheduling, material samples for review, response to questions or concerns and follow up.
The post construction phase for gardens and landscapes is to me the most important. Your garden/landscape is a living system that requires care and is changing as it develops. The quality of a well-managed landscape/garden can increase the value of your investment where a poorly maintained one can cost more money to repair and in some cases reconstruct parts of the garden. I enjoy this phase as I revisit many gardens I designed to see how they have grown in. I love to ask my clients are you enjoying your new terrace, outdoor kitchen or herb garden. What I am asking is does the design meet your goals we established in the initial design phase, has your quality of life improved, have we created a positive impact on your life?
Valuable assets in your landscape:
A good functioning irrigation system
Article by Home Builders Association of Winston-Salem Member,:
J A L A, L L C J e f f A l l e n L a n d s c a p e A r c h i t e c t u r e
1000 West 5th Street
Winston-Salem, NC 27101
Associate Members Guest Article
How to Survive the Upcoming Mobile Apocalypse from Google
by Wes Hammond, Brown Creative Group
Google has announced a significant update to their search algorithm that is predicted to have more of an impact than previous Google updates, which affected millions of websites. In some marketing circles, this update is so significant that it has been dubbed the “mobile apocalypse” or “mobilegeddon.” Granted, these terms may be a bit dramatic, but they underscore the importance of making sure that your website is optimized for mobile users.
For some time now, Google has increased its emphasis on mobile-friendliness in their search results. In late 2014, search results began indicating whether a website is mobile-friendly or not. But starting April 21, 2015, Google is going much further by now using mobile-friendliness as a key ranking factor.
This means that if your website isn’t optimized for mobile, your website will likely lose positions in search results in favor of sites that are mobile friendly. The bottom line is that if your website isn’t ready for mobile, you’ll lose traffic to your site. So how do you know if your website is optimized for mobile? There are essentially two options for your website to be ready for mobile.
One is to have a separate mobile version of your website with some special code that detects whether a visitor is coming from a computer or a mobile device. That determines which version of your website gets shown to the visitor.
The other option is for your website to be responsive. “Responsive design” is an industry term that describes a website that is built in a way so that elements automatically resize and adjust to whatever screen size a visitor is using.
For most businesses, it’s better to have a responsive website than to have a separate mobile website.
One of the easiest ways to find out if your site is mobile-friendly is to enter your website URL into this tool from Google: https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly.
If your website doesn’t pass the mobile-friendly test, here’s what to do.
1. If you’re a technical do-it-yourselfer, you could install a responsive WordPress theme and copy over your content to the new site. Be sure to work within the structure of the theme so you don’t break the built-in responsive code of the website.
2. If you’re not a technical whiz—or if the thoughts of FTP, WordPress, plugins and DNS sound unappealing—enlist the help of web design company who specializes in responsive websites. You’ll save time and frustration, plus have a much better result in the end.
What if I miss the April 21st deadline?
Google’s mobile algorithm update starts on April 21, 2015. It’s recommended to start the process of having your website redesigned to be mobile-friendly now. Even if the site is not ready to launch by April 21, you’ll still be ahead of the curve compared to many other businesses.
The mobile trend is not going away. You’ll see Google continue to favor mobile-optimized websites even more in the months and years to come. So don’t delay! Now is the time to get started so you don’t lose out on valuable website traffic.
For more information about Surviving the Mobile Apocalypse contact…
Brown Creative Group
Associate Members Committee Leadership
Carol Hammond, 2015 AMC Chairperson, STOCK Building Supply
Associate Members Committee Meetings – please join us!
12 – 1, May 14 (Webb Heating & AC)
12 – 1, June 11 (Amanzi Marble & Granite)
[NO Meeting in JULY]
STARS Awards Program
Call for Entries:
Entries are now being accepted for the prestigious STARS Awards program, which recognizes the outstanding professional performance of HBA members throughout the region! Don’t miss out as we salute builders, associates, realtors, media and advertising professionals, and many others who shine above the rest.
The STARS Awards Gala will be held September 16 in Charlotte as part of the annual 21st Century Building Expo & Conference. This awards program is hosted by the North Carolina Home Builders Assocation. All NAHB members are eligible to enter.
The early bird entry deadline is June 19, 2015 ($100/entry). The final entry deadline is July 8, 2015 ($150/entry).
Using Design Services in Your Business
Jamie L. Whitman, CID, NKBA
Stock Building Supply – 336-782-3030
I get asked all the time by builders, what will make my house stand out from the rest? As an interior designer with many years in the business, my answer is: “Quality and Design” We all have budgets to work within to get the house built and turn a profit. We all pick and choose what goes into the quality of the construction in what we build. The finishing touches show the most; including the Flooring, Windows and Doors, the Wall color, Trim, Bath Fixtures and the Cabinetry. All are important aspects of design. You want the interior to be a reflection of the exterior. You want to spend enough to get the job done, but you also want a home that will last. As an Interior Designer, I can help you pull all of this together.
Every design must meet 3 criteria: Function, Aesthetics and Budget, to start we can work on the plan. Does the kitchen make sense? Is there a good flow within the work triangle? Is there a prep area? Enough counter top close by the range to use a cutting board or mixing bowl while stirring your pot. Does the clean up area make sense? I like to look at the traffic pattern from the most used dining table to the sink. Is the dishwasher in the way? I like to see a traffic pattern of Dirty dishes set down, passed through the sink then loaded in the dishwasher. Are your cabinets useful, can you reach what you need in the work area? Pull out trays are helpful to quickly get what you need from the bottom shelf. Soft close dovetail drawers are a wonderful addition to any kitchen project. Then we have “The Look” of the kitchen cabinets. Door styles and Cabinet finishes should complement the rest of the interior and exterior finishes. Painted cabinetry is big business today compared to 10 years ago. Simple Door styles are trending today. Granite or Quartz counter tops are the first choice of homeowners with backsplashes to give that pop of color and design element to the project.
Cabinets come in a variety of qualities that will fit any budget. It’s all up to you. Computer aided drawing (CAD) can give you an idea of what the design will look like before you purchase. As a home builder, your name and reputation is very important to generate referrals and repeat business. If you are able to give more options in these areas you will have a “Happy Homeowner” in the long run. Our next generation of homebuyers is more sophisticated. They are tech savvy, with more access to the internet and being able quickly to shop for their needs. They are more educated and informed of the building process.
Using design services to pull your project together to work with your home buyer is a smart way to manage your time and get the result your buyer wants. Do you speak cabinetry? Can you take the time to explain options so that the client will understand their choices? Can you give them the best design and layout for their money? A designer can save you time and money overall by guiding your client through the design process, helping you keep the project on time and within budget.
Top 10 NCHBA Actions to Benefit Members in 2014 (Link to PDF)
1. Workers’ compensation reform produces rate reduction —NCHBA historically has been, and continues to be, one of the key leaders of a business coalition which, over the past four years, has successfully sought the enactment of a number of significant workers comp reform measures. In 2014, at the urging of this coalition, the General Assembly disapproved unfavorable rules adopted by the Industrial Commission and provided specific legislative direction as to how the replacement rules were to be rewritten; created specific terms for Deputy Industrial Commissioners (the frontline hearing officers in workers’ comp claims) in order to provide more accountability and balance; limited the repackaging of prescription drugs for resale by physicians; and stopped a bill that would have doubled the permissible awards for the loss of, or injury to, an organ. These successes, together with reforms enacted since 2011, resulted in a reduction of workers’ comp rates as proposed by the NC Rate Bureau and approved by the Commissioner of Insurance. These rate reductions will take effect beginning in April of 2015. COST SAVINGS: Workers’ compensation insurance rates will decline by an average of 3.4% in April and will favorably impact about 95% of all employers. The actual savings realized will depend on the employer’s claims experience and the specific job classifications insured.
2. Successfully urged the Building Code Council to enact important code changes which produced significant cost savings—NCHBA Director of Construction & Codes Robert Privott is a constant fixture at all meetings of the Building Code Council (BCC) and its various committees. His expert advocacy and credibility with the BCC again produced significant cost savings to homebuyers thorough several key amendments to the code. Examples include: amendment to the mechanical section of the residential code for domestic exhaust hood systems capable of exhausting in excess of 400 cubic feet per minute shall be provided with a makeup air at a rate that is excess of 400 cubic feet per minute (estimated savings per house: $450); amendment for tempered glazing requirements estimated savings of $100 per window (estimated savings per house on average of 5 windows per house: $500); amendment to the residential code to allow the use of self-drilling screw fasteners to attach decks (estimated savings per house: $100 depending on size of deck); amendments to plumbing section of residential code which allows for more functional design in cabinetry layouts for smaller homes and townhomes and amendment to allow for use of bonded waterproof membranes for shower drains (while neither of these changes will produce significant cost savings, the former provides more flexibility and the latter allows the use of new technology often requested by homeowners). COST SAVINGS: hundreds of thousands of dollars when applied statewide.
3. Reform of NC’s Unemployment Compensation System and repayment of $2.3 Billion of NC $2.8 Billion debt results in reduction of FUTA surcharge — Beginning with legislation enacted in 2012, NCHBA helped lead a business coalition in a major reform of NC’s broken unemployment compensation system and reducing the burden on North Carolina employers by accelerating the repayment of $2.8 billion in debt owed to the federal government. As a result of those efforts, the US Department of Labor in November granted a waiver which reduces the surcharge that NC employers have been paying on their federal FUTA taxes because of the debt. COST SAVINGS: The waiver reduces the employers’ tax increase for the 2014 tax year from $77 per employee to $21 per employee. While the surcharge will increase $21 per employee on Jan. 1 for the 2015 tax year, the entire surcharge will be eliminated once the loan is fully repaid likely in May of 2015. Employers who pay at the higher rate will be able to recoup the surcharges they pay in 2015 once the debt is eliminated.
4. Helped Pass Regulatory Reform Act of 2014–NCHBA assisted a broad business coalition in the enactment of a fourth sweeping regulatory reform act in as many years. Passage of SB 734 (Regulatory Reform Act of 2014), among other important reforms, allows a permit applicant to choose which version of any state or local rule or ordinance will apply if the rule or ordinance changes between the time of submission of the application and the time of decision (except for a zoning permit); provides that any development activity on contiguous property in coastal counties under a subdivision plat approved as of 07/03/12 shall comply with the stormwater provisions in
existence as of the date of issuance and does not have to comply with subsequently enacted provisions; exempts construction and demolition landfills from minimum financial responsibility requirements applicable to other solid waste management facilities; reforms on-site wastewater regulations; and USPS cluster mailbox units are excluded from stormwater regulation for single family or duplex residences. COST SAVINGS: Hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of dollars.
5. Negotiated major reductions in workers’ comp hospital fee schedule —Workers’ Comp medical reimbursement rates are set by a fee schedule adopted by the NC Industrial Commission (IC). For many years, the medical cost component of our system has significantly exceeded the national average due primarily to our hospitals receiving substantially higher reimbursements than hospitals in other states. Last year, NCHBA helped lead a business coalition that caused the General Assembly to enact a law to direct the IC to adopt a new fee schedule based on applicable Medicare payment methodologies. In response to this new law, earlier this year, the IC ordered mediation between the business community, the insurance industry, the medical association and the hospital association. This two-day mediation was conducted at the Builders First Center. This mediation produced a resolution of this matter which has since been adopted by the IC. The new fee schedule substantially reduces the reimbursements to hospitals while increasing the reimbursements to physicians. This new fee schedule will be implemented on 04/01/15 and will be phased in over three years. COST SAVINGS: The implementation of this new fee schedule will produce millions of dollars in cost savings to NC employers which likely will result in further reductions in workers’ comp rates in the future.
6. Continued Environmental Reform Efforts— NCHBA assisted a broad business coalition in the enactment of several important environmental reform measures. SB 734 (Regulatory Reform Act of 2014) also contained several environmental reforms including: a provision which increases the exemption from state regulation of isolated wetlands which are less than or equal to 1 acre east of I-95 (was 1/3 acre) or 1/3 acre west of I-95 (was 1/10 acre) as well as reducing mitigation ratios from 2:1 to 1:1 and the term “isolated wetlands” is defined reducing the chances of arbitrary field determinations; riparian buffer mitigation requirements were substantially improved by the passage of SB 883 (Mitigation Buffer Rule) and private developers will be allowed the same stormwater BMP standards as DOT currently uses per the passage of SB 294 (Allow Use of DOT Stormwater BMPs). COST SAVINGS: Millions of dollars in land development costs avoided statewide.
7. Protected Builders from Abusive Patent Trolls—Sec. 2.1 of SB 848 (NC Commerce Protection Act of 2014) creates protections to deter “patent trolls” from threats and unfounded litigation. Many businesses and builders in other states have been victims of this conduct. COST SAVINGS: Potentially millions of dollars if patent trolls are deterred from pursuing unfounded claims in NC by this new law.
8. Successfully lobbied for continued significant appropriation to Housing Trust Fund and preservation of Workforce Housing Investment Program—Appropriation of $7 million to Housing Trust Fund; extended former low-income housing tax credit program with $10 million appropriation. NCHBA HELPED obtain funding for these critical programs administered by the NC Housing Finance Agency.
9. Continued NCHBA on path to solid financial footing assuring continued superior member services—Building on a successful 2013, projections for 2014 show NCHBA finishing the year with an even greater profit margin. Improved membership numbers; increased revenue from the 21st Century Building Expo; and significant growth in royalty income have made that result possible. Even during the darkest times, NCHBA was able to maintain critical state services to its members. COST SAVINGS: No state dues increase for members in 2014 (state dues of $60 per year have not increased since 1999).
10. Continued to Play Prominent Leadership Role in NAHB–In January, our own Rick Judson was elected 2014 NAHB Immediate-Past Chairman and Kathy Craven Snodgrass was elected to her second year as NAHB Associate Chairman. In addition, many of our NCHBA Members participated in important NAHB committees or councils. NCHBA continues to be the federation’s largest state association (almost 14,000 members and we are the only state over 10,000 members); the Raleigh Wake Co. HBA held its position as the nation’s largest local.
NCHBA Quarterly Meetings
NCHBA holds four meeting each year, during which the NCHBA Committees and Board of Directors meet.
Raleigh – Feb. 17
Raleigh – May 5 & 6 (including Legislative Days)
Charlotte – Sept. 15 – 17 (including STARS Awards)
Charlotte – Dec. 10 (including NCHBA new board installation)
The Quarterly Meetings are an opportunity for members from across the state to meet and discuss issues affecting the home building industry. The ideas, goals and plans discussed at the meetings help guide the future of the association and the industry. All members are invited to join a committee of their choice and sit in on the Board of Directors meetings. A delegate from HBAWS attends the quarterly meetings and members are encouraged to join us.
Listed below are the NCHBA committees with a brief description of each one and times the committee meets at quarterly NCHBA meetings. If you would like to join a committee, email Sara Whitley with your name, contact information and the committee you want to join. Please let us know by December 31, 2014 so that you will begin receiving meeting notices.
Associate Members: provides supplementary representation of the total membership in a cooperative effort for the benefit of the association. 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM
Building Codes: reviews, formulates and informs members of proposed changes to the NC Building Codes; pursues adoption of codes that protect the affordability of housing while providing necessary protection to human health and safety. 8:30 AM – 10:00 AM
Communications: provides advice and suggestions for NCHBA’s internal and external communications; promotes attendance at NCHBA events and meetings. 10:30 AM – 12 Noon
Construction Careers: evaluates existing program and prepares recommendations for voc. ed. training. 1 – 2:30 PM
Land Development: assesses the needs of the land development community, reviews issues relevant to land development and particularly issues which may impact cost of land and affordability of housing constructed on land. 9 AM – 10:30 AM (meet with Regulatory Affairs
Legislative: monitors the activities of the N.C. General Assembly affecting the home building industry and recommends desirable changes, and opposes undesirable changes, in the law. 1 PM – 2:30 PM
Membership: works on recruitment and retention of members; plans and executes the Membership Drive; evaluates member services; assists locals with membership contests, orientation, retention methods, etc. 10 AM – 12 Noon
Professional Women In Building: promotes, enhances and supports women in the home building. 10 – 11:30 AM
Regulatory Affairs & Workforce Housing: reviews regulatory changes affecting the industry, keeps membership advised of regulatory issues and provides assistance to locals on issues. Develops initiatives and incentives for the production of affordable housing, reviews affordable housing programs. 9 AM – 10:30 AM (meets with Land Development)
New Book Helps Aging-in-Place Professionals
Steve Monroe’s new book, “Transforming Lives, Renovating Homes: Marketing Essentials for Aging in Place Specialists” is an inclusive marketing guide for the Aging-In-Place professional. Content includes preparing a SWOT, budget, market analysis, use of social media, preparing an effective website, creating a AIP focused network, plus much more.
Available from Steve at www.stevemonroeenterprises.com.
Home Staging Makes a Difference
– AMC Guest Writer, June DeLugas
Making a difference in how a home is perceived by a potential buyer could break or make a sale. Furnishings and accessories and lighting can make a house feel like a home. Potential buyers find it easier to imagine living in the house when it is furnished. It can also give them an idea of how to arrange furniture in an open concept floor plan, which can be challenging.
For the builders that we work with, we assist with the process of staging. Space planning for furniture should be considered before construction begins on a home. Sometimes, a wall may need to be moved to better accommodate furniture arrangements and light. Furnishings and accessories should complement the style of the home and be beautifully displayed. In other words, don’t put a traditional sofa in a modern style house just for the sake of not having an empty house.
Accessories and lamps will complete the look, but remember, less is more. You do want the house to look lived in, but not overdone. A few accents here and there will be plenty. So why not go the extra mile? There are plenty of inexpensive furnishings and accessories to be found that can complete the look of a new home.
June DeLugas, June DeLugas Interiors
2575 Old Glory Road, Suite 100
Clemmons, NC 27012