Weekly Update: June 29, 2017

  The new #OwnItIowa campaign was announced last Monday morning.  HBAI is a sponsor of the project, along with the Iowa Finance Authority, Iowa Association of REALTORS, Habitat for Humanity, and the Iowa Mortgage Association.  In the photo, left to right, are:  Cathy De Haai (Habitat for Humanity); Dave Jamison (Iowa Finance Authority); Lieutenant Governor Gregg; Governor Reynolds; Gavin Blair (Iowa Association of REALTORS); Vicki Davis (Iowa Mortgage Association); and Jay Iverson (HBAI).

#OwnItIowa Homeownership Campaign

The #OwnItIowa campaign is offering any Iowan who is 18 and older two chances to win $2,500 this summer! The promotion’s goal is to increase awareness of programs available to assist Iowa home buyers. The campaign is a partnership between the Iowa Finance Authority, Iowa Association of REALTORS®, Iowa Mortgage Association, Habitat for Humanity of Iowa and the Home Builders Association of Iowa – organizations who all share the goal of educating home buyers about the homeownership process, programs and resources available to them.

Two Ways to Win $2,500 at IowaHouseHunt.com!

  1.  Enter random sweepstakes. Entrants who enter the name of a lender and Realtor will receive two extra entries into the sweepstakes.  Aug. 31: Sweepstakes entry deadline
  2. Enter photo contest: Upload a photo of the entrant showing something they dislike about not being a homeowner.  It could be a roommate’s bad habit, tight living quarters,  limited privacy or the thought of using a toilet shared by many before you.  The cleverer, the better as photos will be judged by the public and the photo with the most votes will win! July 21: Deadline for photo entries; July 24 – Aug. 4: Voting to determine top 20 entries; Aug. 7 – Aug. 31. Voting to determine the $2,500 winner

There are no strings attached. Entrants may already be homeowners, they just need to be 18 and a resident of Iowa. Attention lenders and Realtors: Any Iowa lender and Realtor® who refer the most contest entries will each receive a new billboard around their area! Contact Ashley Jared with the Iowa Finance Authority with any questions: ashley.jared@iowa.gov.

HBA of Greater Siouxland EO Nancy Moos Announces Retirement

Congratulations to HBA of Greater Siouxland Executive Officer Nancy Moos for over 30 years of dedicated and extraordinary leadership.  She made the announcement last week and plans to finish out 2017.  Planning is underway to find her replacement.  Congratulations Nancy!

Congratulations to the Greater Iowa City HBA!

Greater Iowa City HBA Executive Officer Karyl Bohnsack recently found out that they won the NAHB “Best Workforce Development Plan Implemented” award for their Construction Camp for kids.  They will be recognized at the Association Leadership Conference in Denver in August.  Great job!

Okay Electricians, We Need to Hear From You

The Electrical Examining Board will be holding a Public Hearing to seek input on adopting the 2017 National Electrical Code (NEC). The Public Hearing will be held on August 17, 2017 at 10:00 AM.  If everything goes as planned, the 2017 NEC will go into effect on January 1, 2018.  Please take a look at the proposed changes, the code, and then let us know if you would like additional changes.


 The annual trap shoot with the Cedar Rapids Housing and Building Association last week was a great time, despite the pouring rain when many of us were trying to shoot.  The meat cook off featured 12 entries and was won by Randy Dostal.  Nearly 100 members participated in the event.

Mike Rowe Dinner Tables – A Great Concept Here

As the planning for the Mike Rowe dinner September 28 gets more detailed, we wanted to clarify a little confusion on the tables that we will be selling for the dinner event.  Our plan is to have industry leaders purchase a table, but then have a minimum of two school officials, counselors, administrators, teachers, prospective students, etc. at each of those tables.  We just wanted to split up those influential folks and mix them in with our leaders.

Now that doesn’t mean that you can’t do whatever you want with your table, but past HBAI President Rob Hajek is leading the way.  He plans to purchase two tables, but then fill them up completely with prospective students from schools that he’s involved in.  That’s exactly what we want to happen.  We do not need to fill the room with individuals that already know the message.  Stay tuned in for more details, but put some thought into who you would like to sit at your table.

Another Crippling Bump to our Industry

In a move that will raise housing costs and price countless American households out of the housing market, the Commerce Department last Monday, June 26 imposed a preliminary 6.87% anti-dumping duty on Canadian lumber imports on top of the 19.88% countervailing duties announced in April.

In an official statement, NAHB Chairman Granger MacDonald said that the combined duties are “basically another tax on American home builders and home buyers that will jeopardize affordable housing in America.”

The 19.88% countervailing duty is intended to compensate for government subsidies that Canadian firms allegedly receive, while the 6.87% anti-dumping duty is intended to bridge a supposed gap between the price that Canadian lumber producers are selling lumber in the U.S. and the “fair market price” determined by the Department of Commerce. Combined, the two duties impose a 26.75% total tariff on Canadian lumber imported into the U.S.

In an Eye on Housing blog post, NAHB senior economist Paul Emrath discusses the impact the duties will have on the housing market and the economy. The analysis shows that the tariffs would boost lumber costs by 8.8% for U.S. consumers and add $1,700 to the cost of a typical single-family home.  Further, the annual effects of this tariff in 2017 include a loss of:

  • 11,336 full-time U.S. jobs
  • $685.5 million in wages and salaries for U.S. workers
  • $481.8 million in taxes and other revenue for governments in the U.S.

These losses of wages, jobs and taxes are net losses that take into account the increases in wages, jobs and taxes in the domestic sawmill industry. The reduction in jobs is not limited to the construction industry: Jobs are also lost in businesses that sell and transport building materials, provide architecture and engineering services, etc.

One Occupancy  

In 1940, the percentage of one-person households in the USA was 7.7%, by 1960 it was 13.3%, and by 1980, 22.7%. In 2000, the rate was 25.8% and in 2016, 28.1%! DC has the highest percentage of one-person households at 42%, followed by RI at 31.8% and MT at 31.5%. Globally, Sweden, where one-person households are 47% of all households, holds down first place, followed by Norway at 40%. Elliot F. Eisenberg, Ph.D.

New Resources Help You Recruit Skilled Labor

You can find some great resource materials here (members only) Skilled Workforce Development Resources to help you recruit skilled labor and spread the word about the valuable careers available in residential construction. NAHB economists recently analyzed the latest salary data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics to provide HBAs and members with updated information about their local residential construction labor market.  The new salary data are promoted in the following resources:

State Wage and Workforce Demand Data: State-specific data, including the annual average wages in construction and the projected workforce demand by state and for the top 100 metro areas.

Careers in Construction Posters: This series of posters will help you promote residential construction careers at schools, career fairs, career exploration days, educational conferences and local community events.

Plus, you can share our public Building a Skilled Labor Workforce page with educators, policymakers and industry partners to provide them with resources to help promote these career opportunities in their communities. Resources include the Careers in Construction posters, brochures, lesson plans, a presentation template and more.

Want a $1 Million Paycheck? – Skip College – Read this Story

Here’s a great story from Bloomberg last Tuesday, promoting high paying blue collar jobs and skipping the college debt.  Check it out here.

   The annual President’s Charity Golf Outing last week in Sioux City raised a pile of money for the local soup kitchen.  We had a chamber of commerce weather day and a great time spent with HBA of Greater Siouxland members.  Each year the incoming president chooses which charity will be supported.

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