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Winter is Coming, Protect Yourself from the Cold on the Jobsite

Posted by on Dec 7, 2018 in News

Winter is Coming, Protect Yourself from the Cold on the Jobsite Filed in Labor, Safety and Health by NAHB Now on December 7, 2018 • 0 Comments With winter rapidly approaching, home builders need to be more conscious of working conditions in cold weather. Working in a cold environment forces the body to work harder to maintain optimal temperature. As temperatures drop and wind speed increases, heat leaves the body more rapidly. Common cold induced injuries include hypothermia, which occurs when skin temperature lowers leading to declining internal body temperature (core temperature) and frostbite which is freezing of the skin and underlying tissues. This may lead to serious health problems, and may even cause death. Risk factors that contribute to cold stress include: Wetness/dampness Dressing improperly Exhaustion Preexisting health conditions such as hypertension, hypothyroidism and diabetes Poor physical conditioning Dressing properly is extremely important to avoid cold stress. It is highly recommended to: Wear several layers of clothing: An inner layer of wool, silk or synthetic to keep moisture away from the body. A middle layer of wool or synthetic to provide insulation even when wet. An outer wind and rain protection layer that allows some ventilation to prevent overheating. Wear cold-weather liners specifically designed to be worn underneath personal protective equipment (PPE). Use a knit mask to cover the face and mouth (if needed). Use the appropriate insulated gloves to protect the hands (water resistant if necessary). Wear appropriate insulated and waterproof boots (or other footwear). Overall, use common sense when working in the cold. If you feel you are too cold, go inside and warm up. No one can beat the cold, so don’t even try it. For more tips on cold weather safety, read the OSHA guide to cold stress. The CDC also has great resources for cold stress safety. For more information on jobsite safety, contact Rob...

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Designing a Luxury Kitchen for Today’s ‘Technicurean’

Posted by on Nov 12, 2018 in News

Filed in Sponsored Content by NAHB Now on November 12, 2018 • 0 Comments Signature Kitchen Suite’s line of built-in luxury appliances includes pro-style ranges, integrated column refrigerator/freezers, French door refrigerators, dishwashers and more. It’s no secret that the kitchen is the main place for family gatherings, dining and socializing, so it’s no wonder that the “heart of the home” is a style focal point for most home owners. One growing trend: Luxurious appliances with smart, intuitive technology. NAHB estimates that almost 60% of builders are working on luxury high-end projects this year. For new luxury built-in kitchen appliance brand Signature Kitchen Suite –- backed by home appliance innovator LG Electronics –- delivering performance, design and precision is paramount. “We believe better cooking is possible through better thinking,” said Zach Elkin, general manager at Signature Kitchen Suite and LG for Builders. “Our portfolio of products aims to do just that and is designed for a new group of consumers we’re calling the TechnicureanTM audience. These are forward-thinking home chefs who are passionate about cooking and appreciate technological innovations that help make their lives easier and more convenient.” Take for instance the first-of-its-kind 48-inch Dual Fuel Pro Range, which was brilliantly engineered with built-in sous vide, induction and gas modalities, all on the cooktop. Once limited to the pros, sous vide is a cooking technique that allows home chefs to achieve professional-level results by utilizing precise temperature control to capture the full, true flavor of foods. It’s also Wi-Fi enabled, so with the touch of a button on the Signature Kitchen Suite app, users can enjoy the benefits of smart functionality like preheating the oven remotely. Integrated column refrigeration is also a growing trend among this group. Signature Kitchen Suite offers a variety of refrigerator/freezer options to help fit any footprint, making it ideal for new construction and replacement options. The newest is the 24-inch Integrated Column Refrigerator, which features TrueFitTM integrated design flexibility that allows for proud or flush installation and easy door reversal, along with an impressive 13.9 cubic feet of storage capacity –- the largest in the industry. Ingenious features like an engineered all-metal interior help minimize temperature fluctuations to within one degree, helping to keep food fresh for as long as possible, and LED lighting keeps the focus on the food. Well-equipped to fulfill the needs of any Technicurean, Signature Kitchen Suite’s range of smart appliances is garnering attention from critics and consumers alike, capturing coveted industry accolades like the 2018 Kitchen Product of the Year for its sous vide range by Kitchen & Bath Business. Other key products of interest to this audience include smart lighting, premium finishes and storage solutions that declutter. For more information on Signature Kitchen Suite and LG product offerings for the professional market, visit...

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Confidence Among Remodelers Remains Solid

Posted by on Oct 18, 2018 in News

NAHB’s Remodeling Market Index (RMI) posted a reading of 58 in the third quarter of 2018, remaining stable from the previous quarter. The RMI has been consistently above 50 — indicating the majority of remodelers report market activity is higher compared to the previous quarter — since the second quarter of 2013. The overall RMI averages current remodeling activity and future indicators. “Remodelers across the country are seeing home owner demand remain strong through the midpoint of the year,” said NAHB Remodelers Chair Joanne Theunissen, CGP, CGR, a remodeler from Mt. Pleasant, Mich. “Both positive home price growth — albeit at a slightly slower rate — and good consumer confidence are supporting the steady remodeling market.” Current market conditions rose one point from the previous quarter to 58. Among its three primary components: Major additions and alterations rose one point to 56 Minor additions and alterations decreased one point to 57 Home maintenance and repair rose one point to 60 The future market indicators remained the same as the previous quarter at 59. Its individual components include: Calls for bids rose two points to 57 Amount of work committed for the next three months increased three points to 59 Backlog of remodeling jobs fell four points to 62 Appointments for proposals decreased two points to 59 “The stability of the RMI reflects offsetting trends in the remodeling market,” said NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz. “A sound economy with low unemployment and easing lumber prices are being counterbalanced by rising interest rates and the ongoing labor shortage.” For the full RMI tables, please visit nahb.org/rmi. For more information about remodeling, visit...

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New Home Sales Up 3.5% in August Even as Affordability Concerns Persist

Posted by on Sep 26, 2018 in News

New Home Sales Up 3.5% in August Even as Affordability Concerns Persist Filed in Economics, Home Building by NAHB Now on September 26, 2018 • 0 Comments Sales of newly built, single-family homes rose 3.5% in August to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 629,000 units after downwardly revised June and July reports, according to newly released data from HUD and the Census Bureau. These downward revisions suggest softness in new-home sales activity this summer. However, on a year-to-date basis, sales are up 6.9% from this time in 2017. “Sales ticked up in August due to positive demographics and a strong overall economy,” said NAHB chairman Randy Noel. “However, housing affordability remains a serious concern. Builders must manage supply-side costs and stiff regulatory hurdles to keep prices competitive.” “Housing affordability has taken a toll on new home sales over the summer, and there could be market volatility in the months ahead as communities grapple with the aftereffects of Hurricane Florence,” said NAHB chief economist Robert Dietz. “Still, we expect the overall housing market to grow this year as demand continues to increase among millennials and other newcomers.” A new home sale occurs when a sales contract is signed or a deposit is accepted. The home can be in any stage of construction: not yet started, under construction or completed. In addition to adjusting for seasonal effects, the August reading of 629,000 units is the number of homes that would sell if this pace continued for the next 12 months. The inventory of new homes for sale was 318,000 in August. The median sales price was $320,200. Regionally, sales rose 47.8% in the Northeast, 9.1% in the West and 2.7% in the Midwest. Sales fell 1.7% in the South. For additional analysis, read Dietz’s Eye on Housing blog...

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Chinese Tariffs Act as a $1 Billion Tax Hike on Housing, Could Jump to $2.5 Billion

Posted by on Sep 20, 2018 in News

Filed in Economics, Trade by NAHB Now on September 18, 2018 • 2 Comments President Trump’s decision yesterday to escalate the trade conflict with China could wind up imposing a $2.5 billion tax increase on residential construction at time when builders are already grappling with higher housing costs. Trump announced he is moving immediately to impose 10% tariffs on an additional $200 billion worth of Chinese imports, including $10 billion of goods used by the home building industry. This 10% levy represents a $1 billion tax increase on residential construction. Making matters even worse, the tax hike will rise to $2.5 billion on Jan. 1 when the president said the tariff rate will jump to 25% if the two nations have not resolved their differences by year end. If China retaliates, Trump has vowed to place tariffs on an additional $267 billion worth of imports — a move NAHB has strongly opposed. Responding to this action, NAHB Chairman Randy Noel issued the following statement noting the effects this will have on the housing market and urging the White House to change course: “President Trump’s decision to impose 10% tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports, including $10 billion of goods used by the residential construction sector, could have major ramifications for the housing industry. With housing costs on the rise, this action translates into a tax increase on housing that will rise even more significantly on Jan. 1 when the tariff rate jumps to 25 percent. “Further, this tax increase is coming on top of the current 20% tariffs on softwood lumber imports from Canada. The lumber tariffs have already added thousands of dollars to the price of a typical single-family home. “With America facing a housing affordability crisis, it is counterproductive to enact policies that will needlessly drive up the cost of housing. We respectfully urge the administration to change course and work to resolve these trade disputes in a manner that won’t harm American businesses and consumers.” NAHB has been leading the charge to urge the Trump administration to resume trade talks with Canada. It is imperative to find a long-term solution to this trade dispute that will ensure American home builders and consumers have access to a reliable supply of softwood lumber at reasonable prices. At NAHB’s urging, 171 House members sent a letter to the administration in June urging the United States to re-start softwood trade negotiations with Canada. And in another effort spearheaded by NAHB, 12 Democratic and Republican senators sent a joint letter to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer last week urging the administration to resume lumber trade talks and find an equitable solution that will satisfy all sides. NAHB continues to work on all fronts to find solutions that will ensure a lasting and stable supply of lumber imports into the United States at a competitive...

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