Kitchens, Baths at Center of Change

Given the rapid evolution of design, configuration and products in new homes, it’s likely that American homes will change significantly over the next ten years, a new study by the National Association of Home Builders has concluded.

“The Home of the Future” study, introduced at the recent International Builders’ Show here, was conducted in 2006 by the Economics Group of the Washington, D.C.-based NAHB. Based on surveys of architects, designers, marketers and manufacturers, the study provides a detailed look at what buyers can expect to find in an “average” home and an “upscale” home in 2015.

According to NAHB analysts, the pace of change in new homes will be much faster over the next 10 years than in recent years, and buyers can expect that all homes will be significantly “greener” and more resource efficient than today. There will also be increasing emphasis on universal design/handicap access.

Perhaps most surprising, the consensus was that although average home size has increased significantly in the past decade, it is not likely to increase in the next 10 years. In fact, average home size in 2015 is likely to stay in the range of today’s 2,400 sq. ft., and homes are increasingly likely to be two-story rather than one-story.

Like today, kitchens and bathrooms will continue to be among the most important factors affecting consumer buying choices and will continue to feature upgraded materials and appliances. Another growing trend is recessed lighting, which buyers can expect to find in homes in all price ranges along with wood floors.

Also among the features of the typical upscale single-family home in 2015 will be an outdoor kitchen with grill, sinks, refrigerator and cooking island, researchers said.

Siding, Exterior Trim

Consultant issues bullish report

The residential siding and trim products demand in North America exceeded $11 billion in sales in 2005 according to Principia Partners’ latest study. Vinyl is the largest category and will remain so through 2010 even though an expected decrease in growth is projected.

The siding portion of the industry will increase to $9.7 billion representing an average annual growth of $3.5 percent over the period with the bulk of the growth in that period coming from manufactured stone, fiber cement, engineered wood and stucco.

John Pruett, a Principal at Principia explains “although vinyl siding has reached a mature stage in its product cycle and our firm projects growth to be -2 percent per year, the silver lining may be in vinyl shingles.

Producers including Alcoa and CertainTeed are attempting to protect market share by creating vinyl shingles. Other exciting advances in the siding industry include polymer stone products typically fabricated from polyurethane or polypropylene in the case of Crane’s Bella line. In addition, replica cedar siding is also expected to be a winning product over the next five years. Broadly, this segment can be fiber cement shingles, molded PP, cellular PVC and real cedar in panelized form.”

Exterior trim also continues to be a fast-growing market segment, especially with cellular PVC by companies like AZEK, Royal Mouldings and CMI. Fiber cement trim has grown with greater product introductions by James Hardie.

Siding preferences are highly regional in nature and mirror domestic architectural history. Vinyl is king in the Northeast just as non-combustible fiber cement dominates in the West. While vinyl is popular in the Midwest, brick, wood and other materials also make a strong showing. The Southeast is more eclectic. It is the epicenter of brick usage, but vinyl and fiber cement have a presence there too. The Southwest, favors stucco and adobe style architecture, with fiber cement becoming the mainstream cladding material.

Performance of all siding and exterior trim products and materials continues to improve. While the industry is not known for rapid advances in technology, continued improvement in factory-applied coatings, cementitious plaster stucco, and the use of acrylic resins in vinyl siding has led to products with greater resistance to fading, improved impact resistance, and longer lifetimes.

The repair and remodeling segment accounts for 37 percent of the siding market valued at $3.1 billion. Growth in siding for repair and remodeling is expected to outpace that for new construction over the next two years as the overhand of excess inventories of new homes is reduced.

The leaders in vinyl siding are CertainTeed, Alcoa Home Exteriors and Owens Corning. However, this segment could change dramatically with the Alcoa and Ply Gem merger becoming effective in late 2006 and creating a new market share leader. Furthermore, Owens Corning announced in mid-February that it will look at strategic alternatives for its siding business. The company’s siding solutions business includes the company’s vinyl siding manufacturing operations and Norandex/Reynolds distribution business. Owens Corning expects to complete the process by midyear.

Contractors Honored

Winners named at CCN dinner

Member contractor companies were honored at the Certified Contractors Network annual dinner last month. All nominees were required to clearly demonstrate familiarity with and implementation of CCN Best Practices and Procedures, including but not limited to the Consumer Education Sales Process, Dispute Resolution Process and the CCN Code of Ethics. The awardees were as follows:

  • Company of the Year 2006: Capizzi Home Improvement, Cotuit, Mass.
  • Office Manager of the Year 2006: Marietta Pultz - Roccie’s Asphalt & Landscaping, Stamford, Conn.
  • Production Manager of the Year 2006: Miguel Moreno - Mr. Roofing, South San Francisco, Calif.
  • Project Manager of the Year 2006: Rafael Ulloa - Clark Adams Colo., Torrance, Calif.
  • Sales Manager of the Year 2006: Gary Flax - Maggio Roofing, Takoma Park, Md.
  • Salesperson of the Year 2006: Ralph Feurer - Norton’s Quality Exteriors, Midvale, Utah
  • Rookie Office Manager of the Year 2006: Maggie Kelley - Capizzi Home Improvement, Cotuit, Mass.
  • Rookie Production Manager of the Year 2006: Catherine Honigsberg - Maggio Roofing, Takoma Park, Md.
  • Rookie Project Manager of the Year 2006: Ken Stanley - Fick Brothers Roofing & Exterior Remodeling, Baltimore, Md.
  • Rookie Salesperson of the Year 2006: Terry Stamman - Twin Cities Siding Professionals, St. Paul, Minn.
  • Rookie Company of the Year 2006: Lakeside Exteriors, O’Fallon, Mo.
  • President’s Award: (tie)
    • Steve Rennekamp - Energy Swing Windows, Murrysville, Penn.
    • Charlie Gindele - Dial One WRS, Santa Ana, Calif.
  • Most Helpful Member 2006: Ralph Feurer - Norton’s Quality Exteriors, Midvale, Utah.
  • Best Invited Speaker 2006: Charlie Tremendous Jones
  • Best Member Speaker 2006: Charlie Gindele - Dial One WRS, Santa Ana, Calif.
  • Company MVP 2006: Ha Tran - Precision Roofing Services of New England, Gloucester, Mass.
  • Best Boss of the Year 2006: (tie)
    • Tom Capizzi - Capizzi Home Improvement, Cotuit, Mass.
    • Tony Corrao - Precision Roofing Services of New England, Gloucester, Mass.
  • Best Subcontractor of the Year 2006: Tim Brown - Raingutter Specialties, South Jordan, Utah
  • Most Improved Company 2006: Clark Adams Co., Torrance, Calif.
  • Most Improved Salesperson 2006: Norm Tuazon - Dial One WRS, Santa Ana, Calif.

Green Building

Greenbuild 2007 moves to Chicago

The U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) Greenbuild International Conference and Expo, is moving to Chicago for its 2007 show, which will be held on November 7-9, 2007, as previously announced.

In January, the USGBC agreed to a date change from October to November, in order to support a business development opportunity for the Los Angeles Convention and Visitors Bureau and better accommodate growth. But last week LA, Inc. notified the USGBC that in order to fulfill their needs, the USGBC would now need to move to a December date. The USGBC felt another date change would be detrimental to Greenbuild, and their ability to serve their members and sponsors. A venue change for 2007 became the only option.

Qualified Remodeler’s