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RESIDENTIAL METAL ROOFING SHARE JUMPS TO 14%

BUILDER

Use of metal roofs for homes has grown from 3.7% in 1998.


Courtesy Metal Roofing Alliance

As consumer demand for sustainable building products continues to grow, the Metal Roofing Alliance reports another market share gain for metal in the residential retrofit market. New independent research conducted by Dodge Data & Analytics on behalf of the MRA shows the total market share of metal roofing gained another 3 points in 2016, growing from 11% market share in 2015 to 14% in 2016. Between 2015 and 2016, the total demand for metal roofing increased from 17.7 million squares to 19.4 million squares. Metal roofing is second only to asphalt shingle roofing in the remodeling market.


In 1998, when the Metal Roofing Alliance (MRA) began educating homeowners with a national consumer awareness campaign, metal roofing market share was just 3.7% of the consumer re-roofing market. “MRA members’ commitment to growing the industry through ongoing focus and effort has clearly made a big difference. This latest surge brings us closer to hitting our goal of having metal comprise 20% of the residential roofing market by 2020,” says MRA President Dick Bus. “We believe our success in growing the residential market can be attributed to our consistent effort to educate both homeowners and roofing contractors about the many benefits of residential metal roofing.”

Dodge Data & Analytics performed an analysis designed to estimate the size of the U.S. new construction and repair and remodeling markets for metal roofing. The study reviewed a variety of metal roofing products, including: vertical ribbed panels, shingles, shakes, copper, tiles and slate panels. The study examined metal roofing activity across nine U.S. Census regions. Key findings include:

• The metal roofing market share in the remodeling market has increased in six of the nine Census regions, with gains ranging between 2 to 9 points. The Pacific, East South Central and Mid Atlantic regions show advances in metal roofing greater than 6 points.

• The region with the largest market share is the East South Central region (Alabama, Kentucky

Mississippi, Tennessee) with 30% of homes being re-roofed with metal.• In the New England region (ConnecticutMaineMassachusettsNew HampshireRhode IslandVermont and New England) data reveals that metal roofing increased 3 points to 12% market share.

• The East North Central region (IllinoisIndianaMichiganOhioWisconsin), data shows metal roofing increasing 4 points to 13% market share.

• Asphalt had a 64% market share in 2015 and it is now just 59% in 2016.

• Twenty-nine percent of homeowners reported that they selected metal roofing because it was attractive, while 20% reported metal roofing to be a good investment that added value to their homes. Longevity (18%) and strength and protection (17%) were also attributes cited for choosing metal.

• Standing seam metal roofing is most popular in the East South Central (Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi, Tennessee) at 96%. In the Pacific region (CaliforniaOregonWashington), and the Mountain region (ArizonaColoradoIdahoMontanaNevadaNew MexicoUtahWyoming), shingle shake tile is the most popular metal roof choice for homes.

Jennifer GoodmanJENNIFER GOODMAN

Jennifer Goodman is Senior Editor at BUILDER and has 17 years of experience writing about the construction industry. She lives in the walkable urban neighborhood of Silver Spring, Md. Connect with her on Twitter at @Jenn4Builder.

34 STATES ADD CONSTRUCTION JOBS

BUILDER

AGC says distressed areas in Houston and Florida could face shortages of labor.


Courtesy Associated General Contractors

Thirty-four states and the District of Columbia added construction jobs between August 2016 and August 2017, while 30 states added construction jobs between July and August amid strong demand for construction work in most parts of the country, according to an analysis by the Associated General Contractors of America based on Labor Department data. Association officials said that more states likely would have added new construction jobs except for the fact 70 percent of firms report having a hard time finding craft workers to hire.

“Firms in most states are expanding their headcount to keep pace with growing demand for many types of construction projects,” says Ken Simonson, chief economist for the association. “While it is too early to tell what impacts Hurricanes Harvey and Irma will have on the sector’s workforce, there are not a lot of unemployed, experienced workers available to travel to Texas or Florida to help communities rebuild.”

California added the most construction jobs (47,400 jobs, 6.1 percent) during the past year. Other states adding a high number of new construction jobs for the past 12 months include Florida (35,000 jobs, 7.3 percent); Louisiana (15,300 jobs, 11.1 percent); Texas (15,200 jobs, 2.2 percent) and Nevada (11,600 jobs, 15.3 percent). Rhode Island (17.6 percent, 3,200 jobs) added the highest percentage of new construction jobs during the past year, followed by Nevada; New Hampshire(12.2 percent, 3,100 jobs) and Oregon (11.7 percent, 10,600 jobs).

Sixteen states shed construction jobs between August 2016 and August 2017. Iowa lost both the highest number and highest percentage of construction jobs (-5,900 jobs, -7.3 percent), followed by Illinois (-3,000 jobs, -1.4 percent) and Missouri(-2,100 jobs, -1.7 percent). Other states losing a high percentage of construction jobs during the past year include South Dakota (-2.9 percent, -700 jobs); Nebraska (-2.9 percent, -1,500 jobs) and Wyoming (-2.4 percent, -500 jobs).

Among the 30 states that added construction jobs between July and August, Maryland added more than any other state (3,200 jobs, 1.9 percent), followed by Florida (3,100 jobs, 0.6 percent); Texas (2,600 jobs, 0.4 percent) and Kentucky (2,400 jobs, 3.0 percent). Rhode Island (5.4 percent, 1,100 jobs) added the highest percentage of construction jobs for the month, followed by Kentucky; New Mexico (2.9 percent, 1,300 jobs); and Nevada (2.0 percent, 1,700 jobs).

Seventeen states and D.C. lost construction jobs between July and August while construction employment was unchanged in three states. South Carolina (-2,700 jobs, -2.8 percent) lost the most construction jobs for the month. Other states losing a high number of construction jobs include New York (-2,600 jobs, -0.7 percent); Arkansas (-1,500 jobs, -2.9 percent) and Missouri (-1,200 jobs, -1.0 percent). Arkansas lost the highest percentage of construction jobs during the past month, followed by South Carolina; North Dakota (-2.1 percent, -700 jobs) and Nebraska (-1.8 percent, -900 jobs).

Jennifer GoodmanJENNIFER GOODMAN

Jennifer Goodman is Senior Editor at BUILDER and has 17 years of experience writing about the construction industry. She lives in the walkable urban neighborhood of Silver Spring, Md. Connect with her on Twitter at @Jenn4Builder.

A TIME TO DECLARE WAR ON LABOR SHORTAGES

BUILDER

Some building business leaders are taking action–locally and nationally–to address the skilled workforce challenge. More need to to the same.


The cost of housing’s labor shortages is going up.

There’s no reason not to expect the price tag to do anything other than get higher.

Builders normally rank land–access to building lots–as their biggest source of anxiety, and why not? It’s scarce. It’s expensive. It comes with rules that suck time and talent to deal with.

They’re used to those challenges and that source of worry, as well as the longstanding issue of securing capital to buy and develop those lots, and to finance construction. What they’re not used to in the past couple of business and housing cycles anyway, is this post Great Recession challenge: a lack of human resources to do jobs that require skills for a predictable rate that maps to a profitable margin on a finished project.

An inability to mobilize a sufficiently large force of such skilled workers wasn’t high on many peoples’ list of wicked problems coming out of the downturn. That kind of scarcity was not a big red flag until production started to pick up in 2013 or so, and plants started rebooting, and materials started trucking to sites, and the purchasing directors at some of the bigger companies realized that the armies of workers who’d been on all the sites less than a decade earlier were not going to come back with the flip of a switch.

Epic disruption in an already attenuated national skilled workforce occurs as apocalyptic storms bring large mapped areas and the millions of lives within those regions to their knees. The question for housing’s business leaders is whether this latest series of convulsive climate-related events simply worsens an already chronic challenge around skilled labor, or becomes a lever for opportunity to change.

The cost of not being able to secure skilled tradespeople committed to quality work for a price that will pencil plays out in countless ways. It’s projects that come in over budget. It’s work that needs to be redone, because it’s not done skillfully in the first place. It’s lost sales, because buyers can’t wait for a delivery that’s either unreasonably distant or unpredictable. It’s jobs that don’t get started, and ones that don’t get finished when they’re supposed to.

It’s a known issue, and every strategic leader at every company knows that it’s one that’s not going to take care of itself. The challenge having to source sufficient skilled human labor capacity to deliver goods to a marketplace at prices that marketplace will embrace is ultimately a leadership challenge.

Merely talking about it, or waiting for it to resolve itself are not options. The two options for leaders we’ve spoken to involve concerted, holistic, and transformational change in how to both replenish the aging and shrinking workforce, and how to offset some of the human labor with technology-enabled, off-site equipment.

Neither option is right in the wheelhouse of instincts and proficiencies among our business community’s leaders. It’s time they recognize that they need to declare an all-out strategic war on the labor shortage and rally to bring a new stream of human and technological resources to bear on their plans to deliver new homes and communities to the markets they serve.

John McManusJOHN MCMANUS

John McManus is an award-winning editorial and digital content director for the Residential Group at Hanley Wood in Washington, DC. In addition to the Builder digital, print, and in-person editorial and programming portfolio, his accountability for the group includes strategic content direction for Affordable Housing FinanceAquatics InternationalBig Builder, Custom Home, the Journal of Light ConstructionMultifamily Executive, Pool & Spa News, Professional Deck Builder, ProSales, Remodeling, Replacement Contractor, and Tools of the Trade.

FED HOLDS STEADY, EYES INFLATION

BUILDER

Hints another rate hike is still on the table.

The Federal Reserve’s Open Market Committee on Wednesday wrapped up its monthly meeting by holding interest rates steady and vowing to keep on eye on Hurricane-driven inflation.

In it’s statement, the committee said, “Higher prices for gasoline and some other items in the aftermath of the hurricanes will likely boost inflation temporarily; apart from that effect, inflation on a 12-month basis is expected to remain somewhat below 2% in the near term but to stabilize around the Committee’s 2% objective over the medium term. Near-term risks to the economic outlook appear roughly balanced, but the Committee is monitoring inflation developments closely.”


It continued, “The Committee expects that economic conditions will evolve in a manner that will warrant gradual increases in the federal funds rate; the federal funds rate is likely to remain, for some time, below levels that are expected to prevail in the longer run. However, the actual path of the federal funds rate will depend on the economic outlook as informed by incoming data.”

The FOMC said it would begin selling off its stash of assets, called unwinding by some and “balance sheet normalization” by the Fed, in October.

In reaction to the statement, Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, said, “As the Federal Reserve indicated today, the huge purchases of mortgage-backed securities and U.S. government bonds could not have continued and will unwind beginning next month. Looking within the statement, the pace of selling looks to be in slow motion. That means that mortgage rates would rise up only modestly over time. Given the pace of unwinding asset purchases with the fewer rounds of anticipated short-term rate hikes over the next two years, it’s expected that mortgage rates should still remain at historically attractive levels. The 30-year fixed rate may rise to slightly above 4% by the end of this year, and may only reach 4.7% by the end of 2018.”

10 Modern Treehouses We’d Love to Have in Our Own Backyard

10 Modern Treehouses We’d Love to Have in Our Own Backyard

06.29.17

Does that childhood feeling of running away to live in a treehouse ever really leave us? The magic of escaping to a fantasy life high above in the trees sounds pretty great, but realistically we all have to grow up and be adults, but that doesn’t mean we can’t build a little getaway for some quiet time. We rounded up 10 modern treehouses that we’d love to retreat to when we need a little calm.

RPA’s Treehouse sits on a steep ridge in Los Angeles’ Nichols Canyon and is used as an office/studio and getaway, complete with a unique butterfly roofline.

Photo by Ricardo Oliveira Alves

The Tree Snake Houses were designed by Luís Rebelo de Andrade and Tiago Rebelo de Andradein Portugal to resemble a snake sliding through the trees in a forest.

Photo by Johan Jansson

Snøhetta is responsible for the jaw-dropping Treehotel, located in a forest in Northern Sweden. Their latest elevated cabin is called The 7th Room and it’s a two-bedroom space nestled amongst the trees. You’ll do a double take when standing underneath it because they covered the bottom of the cabin with a black and white print of trees.

Photo by Henrietta Williams

Nozomi Nakabayashi designed this Hut on Stilts high off the ground amongst the trees. The cozy space can be used as a sleeping getaway or a writer’s office, safely away from all distractions you’d find on the ground.

Courtesy of The HemLoft

The HemLoft is a private house within the trees in Whistler, Canada, that’s located about a five minute walk from the closest road. The egg-shaped hideaway was built and completely self-funded by software developer Joel Allen.

In Calistoga, California, O2 Treehouse designed this two-story treehouse for overnight guests and play. An upper level, which is an enclosed room, cantilevers out over a long catwalk and is accessed through a trap door.

Courtesy of Treehouse People

Designer Takashi Kobayashi heads up a collective called Treehouse People and has built over 120 treehouses in Japan, including this one. The box-like structure features wavy planks of recycled wood as shingles on the exterior to achieve its unique look.

Photo by Greg Cox

In a suburb of Cape Town, Malan Vorster Architecture Interior Design designed this unusual, cabin-like treehouse in a clearing amongst a bunch of trees. The layout resembles a pinwheel with a central square that has four circles just off of it.

Photo by Cris Beltran

Daniel Cabezas, Rosario Velasco, and Joan Sanz designed and built Villa Ardilla as an artist residence on a hillside in Granada, Spain. The tree-surrounded retreat also ditches typical wood as its main material and instead uses corrugated metal that’s painted red and green.

Photo by Markus Bollen

Perched 11 meters off the ground, this treehouse by Andreas Wenning of German firm baumraum is a getaway for the owners whose main house is on the property. A small door in the roof of the garage is how to access the spiral staircase that leads to the treehouse above.

06.29.17

Photo by Markus Bollen

Perched 11 meters off the ground, this treehouse by Andreas Wenning of German firm baumraum is a getaway for the owners whose main house is on the property. A small door in the roof of the garage is how to access the spiral staircase that leads to the treehouse above.