Weekly Update: September 28, 2017

 Iowa remodelers council

 There were 16 properties on the Tour of Remodeled Homes last weekend in the Des Moines area.  Members of the Remodelers Council gathered together on a bus tour last Friday before it opened to the public.  It’s an annual affair and it’s so much fun.  Great projects and the group is very tight knit.

Mike Rowe Event – Planning to Attend Tonight?

We have 1,540 attendees for our Iowa Skilled Trades event tonight.  Here are a few housekeeping notes:

  • The dress is business casual and jeans are ok.  We are asking students/educators to wear your school colors.
  • Everyone will need to be seated by 6:00 p.m. in order for us to stay on time.  Please make sure you are on time and at your table when we close the doors.  We won’t be able to re-open until dinner begins at 6:30 p.m.
  • Each person will be given one drink ticket (soda/water for under 21) to be used during the networking time.  Cash bar after your ticket has been used.  Water will be on the tables during dinner.
  • Everyone will be checking in by last name and, if not that, then by company name.

Tell People Why Construction is a Great Field

October is Careers in Construction Month, an opportunity to increase public awareness about the great jobs available in residential construction and related trade professions.  To keep potential employees in the pipeline, NAHB student chapters, local and state associations, and other members will need to promote the various career paths in construction.

If you are looking for ideas of how to recognize the contributions of building professionals and to reinforce a positive image of construction careers, check out the Careers in Construction Month Toolkit where you’ll find:

  • Promotional materials like brochures and posters you can download and print locally
  • Sample activities that you and your members can do in your community
  • Customizable articles to feature on your website or in newsletters
  • Members are also encouraged to consider the many valuable opportunities of offering student internships. Doing so allows home builders to engage with a large talent pool filled with resources that could help them meet their skilled labor needs.
  • To better understand these work-study student-learning opportunities and how to determine the type of student best suited to a company’s specific needs, builders can view the Student Internships: Resources for NAHB Members.

Fire Sprinkler Licensing Advisory Board Position Open

The current board member’s second term for the Fire Sprinkler Industry expired July 1, 2017.  They are looking for anyone interested in joining the licensing advisory board to submit an application if interested.  The application can be found here.

The board meets quarterly in Des Moines at the Oran Pape Public Safety building.  There is also a conference call-in number to attend by phone.  Terms are six years and a member cannot serve more than two consecutive terms.  If you are interested in joining the board, please fill out the application and return it by close of business next Monday, October 2.

Submit Nominations for the YP Awards

The deadline for the 2017 NAHB Young Professionals Award has been extended to Oct. 13. Do you know a deserving young leader or emerging professional? It’s not too late to nominate them! Please note that applications for the NEW One to Watch Awards are also still open. Go to www.nahb.org/youngprofessionalaward to apply today.

Education Edge: New Online Courses Begin Oct. 2

Check out how you can participate in Learning Resources Network (LERN) online courses. Starting Oct. 2, month-long courses begin in creating cell phone apps, Facebook for Business, managing social media platforms, content marketing and many more. Check out all course options and dates.

Engaging and Attracting Young Professionals

NAHB is hosting two virtual town hall meetings in October to explore ways to best serve and recruit young professional members.  The first meeting will take place Oct. 17 and is open to young members and local leadership. We’ll ask participants to share their experiences and what helped them jumpstart their careers.

This is an exciting opportunity to participate in a national dialogue about the key issues young members are faced with and the role HBAs have in shaping the future of our industry. Don’t miss out on a chance to share your first-hand experiences and discuss hot topics on attracting young professionals.  Bring your ideas and your questions, and let’s connect!

Members’ Virtual Town Hall Meeting For Local Leadership and Members
Tuesday, Oct. 17; Time: 2-3 p.m. ET
Log on with this link at the time of the call.
Phone: 866-628-8629  –  Passcode: 658878

New Home Sales Fall 3.4% Nationally, Midwest Unchanged

Sales of newly built, single-family homes in August fell 3.4% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 560,000 units from an upwardly revised July reading, according to newly released data by HUD and the U.S. Census Bureau.  This was the lowest sales reading since December 2016. However, year-to-date, new home sales are 7.5% above their level over the same period last year.

“This month’s report is another reminder that builders need to manage rising supply-side costs to meet consumer demand for affordably priced homes,” said NAHB Chairman Granger MacDonald.

“The year-to-date growth shows that new home sales are continuing to make consistent, long-term gains,” said NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz. “However, we may see more volatility in the next few months as communities affected by the recent hurricanes experience construction delays and other economic disruptions.”

The inventory of new homes for sale was 284,000 in August, which is a 6.1-month supply at the current sales pace.  Regionally, new home sales remained unchanged in the Midwest. Sales fell 2.6% in the Northeast, 2.7% in the West and 4.7% in the South.

Gov. Reynolds Praises New White House STEM Initiative

Gov. Kim Reynolds joined a phone call Monday with Ivanka Trump and Reed Cordish, assistant to the president for Intragovernmental and Technology Initiatives, where they rolled out a White House initiative to support high-quality STEM education, with a focus on K-12 computer science.

“I applaud this administration’s commitment to ensuring all of our students have access to the computer science skills and training necessary to fill the jobs of the future,” Gov. Reynolds said. “In a technology-driven economy, it’s essential that elementary students learn the basics of computer science so they are prepared to take more advanced computer science courses later, if that’s what interests them.”

The White House initiative complements Iowa’s 2011 STEM initiative and new state law that encourages every elementary, middle and high school in Iowa to offer high-quality computer science instruction by July 1, 2019. Iowa’s legislation includes establishing a computer science professional development incentive fund to prepare more teachers to teach computer science.

An Iowa computer science work group made up of business and education leaders and legislators is expected to make recommendations on how the professional development incentive fund could best be used and how computer science courses could count as a math or science credit for high school graduation. Those recommendations are expected later this fall.

Duluth Carpentry Training

Here is a great article on how lives have been changed with carpentry training in Duluth.

Weekly Update: September 21, 2017

   We had an excellent conversation with Congressman Steve King last Tuesday.  He always has an interesting insight to what is going on within the beltway.  In attendance around the table were Mary Fitch (in red); Jay Iverson, Congressman King; Rich Fitch; LaDonna Gratias; Jerry Cable; and Dan Knoup.

Lots of Exposure for Skilled Trades Event

We couldn’t be happier with the nationwide exposure to our Mike Rowe event next week.  It’s definitely the buzz and it will be a great time.  Des Moines HBA EO Dan Knoup and HBAI EO Jay Iverson were on WHO 1040 and iHeart Radio’s “Need to Know with Jeff Angelo” show last Wednesday.  You can check it out by clicking here.

The “Saturday Morning Live” show on WHO and iHeart radio with Justin and Adrianne managed to contact Mike Rowe on the phone and they all did a great job discussing our needs and the event itself.  Check out the article “Mike Rowe Sure Loves Iowa” here.  Then click on the “Listen to the full interview with Mike Rowe” to listen to it.

October is Careers in Construction Month

October is Careers in Construction Month, an opportunity to increase public awareness about the opportunities available in residential construction and related trade professions. Anything that you can do in your circles to help promote career paths in construction would be appreciated. Check out the Careers in Construction Month Toolkit for ideas to recognize the contributions of those professionals working in the field and to foster a positive image of construction careers.  Here are Downloadable Promotional Materials, brochures are available for you to print locally.

OSHA Silica Rule Starts Saturday – Good-Faith Efforts for 30 Days

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has announced that it will consider good-faith efforts by employers to comply with the new silica rule for the first 30 days following the start of enforcement on Saturday, Sept. 23.  OSHA said it will offer outreach and assistance to help ensure that covered employers are fully and properly complying with the new requirements.

Employers may be cited if it appears, upon inspection, that an employer is not making any efforts to meet the new rule.  Resources and background information for complying with the new rule can be found on NAHB’s website at nahb.org/silica.

NAHB and the Construction Industry Safety Coalition have requested that OSHA withdraw the increased crystalline silica exposure standard and work with the construction industry to develop a more feasible and economical approach to dealing with the silica hazards.

NAHB’s legal challenge on the silica rule is still pending. The case is scheduled to be argued before the court on Sept. 26.  OSHA’s memo announcing this information can be read here.

The Third Annual I BUILT THIS Video Contest Now Open

NCCER and Build Your Future’s I BUILT THIS video contest aims to give aspiring craft professionals and their instructors an opportunity to showcase outstanding construction projects and designs.  Video entries must be submitted by Oct. 23, 2017 at 8 p.m. EDT. Contest winners will be announced at the end of October in celebration of Careers in Construction Month! Apply today!

   Members of the Greater Iowa City HBA gathered at McGrath Hawkeye Harley Davidson in Coralville last week for a really fun after hours.  It was a great crowd and a fun place to gather.

Tax Reform Webcast Available

With Congress expected to take up work on tax reform legislation shortly, we’ll need you to advocate for the right bill based on our members’ priorities on some key elements.  The Sept. 18 “Tax Reform and the Housing Industry” interactive webinars kicked us much closer to the goal.
If you were not able to participate in one of these sessions, it is not too late to get an understanding of the issues at hand.  Listen to this recording of the webcast: The session discusses:
  • The mortgage interest deduction, state and local tax deductions and their effects on single-family sales
  • The home equity deduction, energy tax incentives and other issues affecting remodelers
  • Multifamily issues, including the LIHTC, 1031s, and carried interest
    General business tax issues, including the tax treatment of debt
The webcast includes a member question and answer session and a review of some of the priorities on which NAHB is seeking input. It is not too late to weigh into the discussion.  Review the webcast recordingand provide your thoughts to NAHB at boardtopics@nahb.org. Remember, the webcast recording is a member-only resource, so you must be logged into nahb.org to view it.

HBA of Iowa Leadership Nominations Due

Your application to serve your state HBA in a leadership position is due September 20.  It’s fun, low impact, and comprised of a great group of people.  If you are interested in serving on any Executive Committee position – please let HBAI Executive Officer Jay Iverson know by then.  The Nominating Committee will be happy to see how you can fit into our future growth and plans.

Here are the job descriptions and applications – just click on the description for more info and application:

Interested in Centerville, IA?

The City of Centerville, IA is looking for Real Estate Developers and Home Builders for the completion of housing on a developed parcel in Centerville.  The project consists of 11 remaining residential lots for single-family residences.  More information is available here or by contacting the City of Centerville at 641-437-4339.


Shop class safety with Gerry Dee.