Weekly Update: September 22, 2016

   Here is the leadership team for our Student Chapter at Iowa State.  HBAI President Steve Shuey and Executive Officer Jay Iverson spoke to the Chapter last week at their first meeting of the year.  More often than not, the students have jobs prior to graduation in the commercial side of our industry.  This year however, there are several who are planning to go into the residential side.  If you are interested in having one of them work for you as an intern, please email Jay Iverson and he will put them in contact with you.  They’re a great group – very active and great assets for our industry.  We are planning to start several new student chapters throughout the state in 2017.

Senator Grassley and Congressman Blum Receive First-Ever Defender of Housing Award

Check out the new NAHB advertisement that went to Politico listing the recipients of the NAHB Defender of Housing Award and thanking them for their support of the housing industry during the 114th Congress.  Approximately 130 lawmakers will receive the award, which means that over 400 members of the House and Senate will not be recognized as Defenders. Lawmakers were nominated for the award by our state and local associations based on a variety of important criteria, including support and leadership on housing issues, as well as accessibility to the NAHB membership.

The goal of the award is to recognize members of Congress who go above and beyond for the housing industry.  Another goal of the award is to raise the level of attention paid to our issues and industry by members of Congress.

   Senator Grassley is an Instagram star – he is always looking for the next opportunity and this was sent out minutes after our group gave him the first-ever Defender of Housing Award last Friday.  From left to right – Bryan Thumma; Randy Dostal; Tim Ruth; Glenn Siders; Jim McGrew; Senator Grassley; Drew Retz; and Jay Iverson.

   Congressman Rod Blum was also awarded the first-ever Defender of Housing Award.  From left to right Melissa Olson; Bryan Thumma; Jay Iverson; Congressman Blum; Rich Fitch; and Drew Retz.

Iowa Football Games & Tailgate – Northwestern Wisconsin NebraskaFriends of the Home Builders of Iowa Association are invited to Iowa football this fall.  Order the following events by clicking here.

  • Saturday, October 1, Iowa vs. Northwestern, 11 am kick.  HBAI ticket price: $60.  Regular ticket price.
  • Saturday, October 22, Iowa vs. Wisconsin, kickoff TBA.  $125 for the Hawkeye Village ticket and tailgate package. The Hawkeye Village package includes an all-inclusive buffet meal of Grilled Steak Sandwiches, Chicken Breast Skewers, Wimmer’s Brats, White Cheddar Mac and Cheese, Rainbow Rotini Salad, Hawkeye cupcakes and Jumbo Chocolate Chip Cookies as well as bottle water and Coca-Cola soft drinks.  Beer/wine tickets are available for additional purchase. Please note, state sales tax will be added to the hospitality portion of this purchase.  Hawkeye Village opens 2.5 hours prior to kickoff and is located near Kinnick Stadium at the Duane Banks Iowa Baseball Complex.
  • Friday, November 25, Iowa vs. Nebraska, kickoff 11:00 am.  Game ticket price:  $58 adults; $25 youth – Hero’s Game – regular ticket price is $70.

Orders will be seated together and filled on a first come, first serve basis.  Youth tickets are valid for high school ages and younger.  Tickets will be mailed approximately one month before the game.  For more information or to order by phone please call (319) 626-8286.

Builder Confidence Surges in September

Builder confidence in the market for newly built, single-family homes in September jumped six points to 65 from a downwardly revised August reading of 59 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI). This marks the highest HMI level since October 2015.With the inventory of new and existing homes remaining tight, builders are confident of positive market conditions for new construction. Solid job creation and low interest rates are also fueling demand, while builders continue to be hampered by supply-side constraints that include shortages of labor and building lots.

NAHB Talks with Chilean Lumber Sources

U.S. home builders in early September conducted four days of talks with Chilean government, trade and industry officials geared toward increasing exports of softwood lumber and other wood products to America.

Don’t Miss the 2017 International Builders’ Show

Peyton Manning; 130+ great educational sessions; life-changing networking opportunities; thousands of leading-edge products; 2016 Best Country Song Grammy Award winner Little Big Town; live demonstrations of innovative building techniques; housing economics data and forecasts. Where can you get all this? At the 2017 International Builders’ Show, Jan. 10-12 in Orlando, Fla.Do

Business with an NAHB Member

Associates are critical to the success of the NAHB federation at the local, state and national levels. This is a great time to recognize associates’ contributions as September is Associate Appreciation Month.

Oregon HBA Testifies on Behalf of NAHB – FEMA & NMFS

Oregon HBA Executive Officer Jon Chandler testified to a Congressional Committee on behalf of his organization and NAHB regarding a particularly nasty ESA issue involving FEMA’s flood insurance program and National Marine Fisheries Service. Mr. Chandler believes that it’s potentially the worst thing that he has seen in 30 years of seeing horrible bits of environmental policy.  It’s probably not going to impact Iowa that much, but it’s interesting and yet another example of the power within our Federation.  He did an excellent job, check it out by clicking here.

 We had a really fun time judging the Quad Cities Builders and Remodelers Association fall Parade of Homes last Saturday.  Several groups of two split up the entries by price ranges and toured them prior to the 1:00 p.m. opening to the public.  There are 21 homes open through this coming weekend.

Interested in Volunteering?

We are starting to plan for 2017 already and we need you to be a part of our state organization.  If you’re interested in any capacity, please contact HBAI Executive Officer Jay Iverson.  It’s a great group, we have fun and are in the early stages of many awesome changes to our planning and service offerings.

Weekly Update: September 15, 2016


Professional Women in Building Week!

September 12-16 is NAHB Professional Women in Building Week, which celebrates women as a visible component of the residential construction industry and provides an occasion for members across the NAHB federation to collectively raise awareness of their contributions through activities that promote, enhance and support women within the industry. Additionally, PWB Week extends an opportunity for PWB members across the country to share the value of NAHB Professional Women in Building Council membership. Click on these links of interest:

NAHB Endorses Representatives David Young & Rod Blum for Congress

NAHB endorsed Iowa Republicans Rod Blum and David Young for re-election to Congress, something that we’ve never done in the past.
“Rep. Blum has consistently demonstrated that he is a champion of housing and has pushed to advance policies that will put families in homes, create jobs and move the economy forward. Rep. Young has made housing and homeownership a top national priority and understands that expanding housing opportunities for all American is essential to the economic and social well-being of our nation,” said NAHB Chairman Ed Brady, a home builder and developer from Bloomington, Ill.
Housing is important to local, state and national economies and accounts for about 15 percent of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product. NAHB believes in this critical election year that it is important to elect pro-housing, pro-business candidates to Congress in order to ensure that the housing and economic recovery continues to move forward.
“NAHB has taken this action to endorse candidates for Congress because a robust housing industry is key to a thriving national economy,” said Brady. “We are proud to endorse both Rep. Blum and Rep. Young for re-election because he supports policies to remove needless regulatory barriers that will allow home builders to provide more safe and affordable housing for hard-working American families.”
New home construction is an engine of job creation. On average workers from 22 fields are needed to build a home. Constructing 100 single-family homes creates nearly 300 full-time jobs and $11.1 million in fees and taxes for all levels of government to help fund schools, roads, police and firefighters.


   We had an awesome day riding through the gorgeous Loess Hills in Western Iowa last Saturday with the HBA of Greater Siouxland Annual Motorcycle Rally. We hit six bars in Whiting, Onawa, Moorehead, Soldier, Mapleton, and Smithland, Iowa before having dinner in Sergeant Bluff.

Awesome National Coverage for KCC, IC & CR HBA’s

Professional Builder Magazine had an excellent article in this month’s magazine, highlighting Kirkwood Community College and the Iowa City and Cedar Rapids HBA’s. Here is the start:
The partnership among an Iowa community college, two HBAs, and a committed group of building industry mentors is opening doors to students interested in construction and engineering careers-and opening the eyes of the students’ parents about how rewarding these careers can be.
ACE, short for Architecture, Construction and Engineering, is a national program. In Iowa, it’s run by the construction management department at Kirkwood Community College in Cedar Rapids. The school draws from a seven-county area that includes 32 school districts and 40 high schools.
Four years after its launch, ACE Academy of Eastern Iowa has active programs in 24 of those 32 districts. Student projects have included tree houses, a baseball dugout (complete with press box), a “tiny house” built from a former storage container, and a 1,500-square-foot STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) student center. The article is much longer, check it out by clicking here.

Interested in Volunteering?

We are starting to plan for 2017 already and we need you to be a part of our state organization. If you’re interested in any capacity, please contact HBAI Executive Officer Jay Iverson. It’s a great group, we have fun and are in the early stages of many awesome changes to our planning and service offerings.


  We had a great time at the Iowa City HBA membership meeting last Thursday at the absolutely stunning MidWestOne Bank Building in downtown IC. The photo on left (from left to right) shows Iowa City HBA President Aaron McGlynn, HBAI Executive Officer Jay Iverson, MidWestOne Bank President Mike Finlayson, and 2016 HBAI President Steve Shuey. The photo on right is the cool upper deck patio.

New Data Available on Fire Sprinkler Mandates

Voting members of the International Code Council will once again consider an amendment to move the requirement to install fire sprinkler systems in one- and two-family homes from the main body of the International Residential Code – where it has been since 2009 – back to the appendix.
It makes a difference because when a requirement is part of the main body, it’s much easier for states, counties and local jurisdictions to adopt it lock, stock and barrel when it comes time to update the building codes. When it’s in the appendix, the jurisdiction has to decide to amend the model code to include the requirement.
That’s not been an issue for fire sprinkler requirements, though. The overwhelming majority of states have decided that installing the systems should be an option, not a mandate, for home buyers. And the overwhelming majority of home buyers have decided that the systems are not worth the additional expense.
This set of tables and maps produced by the NAHB Construction, Codes and Standards Department breaks it down: By either the code adoption process or legislative action, 44 states have rejected fire sprinkler requirements. Only two states – California and Maryland – require them for all new one- and two-family homes.
Delaware, Colorado, Illinois and Wyoming have not chosen to pursue statewide requirements, although Delaware builders are required to give buyers a cost estimate for sprinklers and install them if the buyer wants.
NAHB agrees that fire sprinklers should be an option for all home buyers, and in fact has helped state and local HBAs create materials that their builders can use to offer that option. But the price – the Fire Protection Research Association puts the average cost per system at about $6,000 – can make new homes unaffordable for many buyers.
In addition, today’s smoke alarms, coupled with recent advances in building science and in the building codes themselves – make new homes safer than ever before.


  The state Building Code Advisory Council met Tuesday to discuss the future composition of the Council – they are still in need of at least one individual – preferably a democrat or independent female. HBAI members Mark Reetz was elected chairman and Don Beal was elected vice chairman. From left to right, Rich Bolten (acting Iowa building commission); David Kuhn (CUrbandale) retired council member and chair Barb Welander (Mt. Pleasant); HBAI Second Vice President Scott Webster (Bettendorf); Mark Reetz (Des Moines); Marsha Bannister (Panora & Clive); Don Beal (Adel); and Ljerka Vasiljevic (Department of Public Safety Construction/Design Engineer). HBAI Executive Officer Jay Iverson also spent an entire morning the day prior with the stakeholder group discussing the adoption of the 2015 ICC Energy Code. It’s going to be an interesting battle – bringing a balance to housing affordability, your bottom line, and beneficial changes.