Remodeling Spending Set to Increase
Projections for spending on home improvement and remodeling indicate an increase through the remainder of 2012 and into 2013, based on improving housing market conditions and record low interest rates, according to the Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity (LIRA) released by the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University. The LIRA suggests that annual homeowner improvement spending is expected to reach double-digit growth in the first half of 2013, essentially planting the seeds for what appears to be a very robust remodeling recovery.
Appreciation Moves Housing Forward
Sparked by rising home prices across much of the nation, the housing recovery is now under way, but fiscal uncertainties and other challenges could result in a bumpy ride in the coming months, according to economists participating in the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) webinar on the construction and economic outlook.
NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe cited a number of other factors that are carrying the housing momentum forward:
• Pent-up household formations
• Rising consumer confidence
• Increasing builder confidence in all three legs of the industry: remodeling, multifamily and single-family construction
• Growing rental demand
• More than 100 metros currently on the NAHB/First American Improving Markets Index
EPA Delays Commercial Lead Paint Rule
The Environmental Protection Agency has postponed the lead paint rule for public and commercial buildings until July 1, 2015. The EPA also revised an August 2009 settlement agreement to merge the interior and exterior Lead: Renovation, Repair and Painting (LRRP) rule for commercial buildings and take final action by Jan. 1, 2017.
Delta Standard Recognized by ANSI
The Malta, N.Y.-based Building Performance Institute’s Delta Standard, BPI-2400-S-2012: Standard Practice for the Standardized Qualification of Whole-House Energy Savings Predictions by Calibration to Energy Use History, has been published as an American National Standards Institute standard. The Delta Standard specifies a process for the calculation of standardized predicted savings: the difference (delta) between the modeled energy usage before and after an upgrade using approved building energy use simulation software. The process uses actual home energy bills to predict savings and provides a set of standardized operating conditions to be used in the final calculation of predicted savings. The standard applies to existing detached single-family dwellings and townhouses that meet the specific criteria detailed in the scope.
Window Film Recognized by California Code
The California Energy Commission has included polymer window film in the state building code, a first in the United States, says the Washington, D.C.-based International Window Film Association. The change to the code, effective January 2014, means window film is recognized in California as a building product like glass or roofing materials, primarily for retrofit applications. The change in the code comes on the heels of a report that concludes the majority of existing homes would be able to achieve significant energy savings through application of the window film and those with single pane glass could gain a greater energy advantage than using R-38 insulation in their home’s ceilings.
Pella Enters Window Market in India
Pella Corp. announced that Pella Windows and Doors manufactured in the USA will be sold in India. An independent distributor, Abir Trademart Pvt. Ltd., will offer products sold through Pella India, to serve residential and commercial construction interests for new construction, remodeling and replacement needs in the country. The company does not have plans to manufacture windows in India, it said in a news release.
Homes built to voluntary ENERGY STAR specifications made up about 26 percent of all new homes constructed in the United States during 2011. – U.S. Energy Information Administration
Demand for windows and doors in the U.S. is forecast to rise 9.3 percent per year to $34.2 billion in 2016. – The Freedonia Group
103 housing markets across the United States qualified to be listed on the National Association of Home Builders/First American Improving Markets Index (IMI) for October.