Tuesday, April 15, 2014

HBA member Jimmy Dias of Dias Renovations and his wife Christy host annual charity event.

Create the Cure – A Unique Charity Event

What is a pancreas?  And what can make it cranky?  Christy Dias, wife of Jimmy Dias, has had to find out first hand.  She has endured years of severe illness due to a very sick pancreas, and ultimately had the entire organ removed.  In January, 2011 she was the 49th patient at MUSC to have what is called a total pancreatectomy with an islet cell transplant.  The islet cells were transplanted into her liver, in hopes she would not become an immediate brittle diabetic. 

Through this long battle, she became well-informed of medical terms, especially those pertaining to pancreas diseases.  She found that educating herself, then sharing it with others, made the suffering have some sort of meaning.  She found out how little research is done on the crucial organ, and very little is understood even within the medical community.  There are extremely limited treatments for her kind of illness, and no cure.  The treatments that do exist are drastic, such as removing the entire organ as she has had done.  Many medical professionals still do not understand that anyone can live without the organ.  But as Christy is living proof, it can be done.  It is just never easy, and far from ideal!

 She continues to undergo many procedures and tests to keep on top of complications.  She deals daily with difficult-to-control diabetes.  But it hasn’t kept her down.  She created a website www.crankypanky.com, and formed a full non-profit organization through it all.  She raises funds for the research that desperately needs to be done.  She fights for education and awareness of diseases of the pancreas – which are rare but very life-altering or deadly. 

Her fundraiser, Create the Cure, is a unique event that combines a beautiful supper, music, auctions, and art at Twigs Tempietto in Greenville, SC.  The setting is amazing, and local artists linger throughout the venue displaying their work.  Christy is an artist herself, and art is what has also gotten her through the tough times. 

You can read a lot more about the pancreas, its diseases, and more importantly, purchase tickets to the Create the Cure at www.crankypanky.com.  It is just a few weeks away, May 1, 2014 at 6pm.  Tickets are $30/piece and must be purchased in advance.  Jimmy and Christy would greatly appreciate your support of this worthy cause, and would love to see you there.
You can also read more from the feature in Greenville Online.

Judges needed for the HBA of Greater Columbia Remodeling Awards

The HBA of Columbia is looking for judges for their Remodeling Awards. They are looking for builders, remodelers, or designers to help judge, though any member is welcome. The judging will be Tuesday, May 20th. starting at 9 a.m. and conclude around 2 or 3 p.m. and lunch will be provided.

For more information or to help out please contact Bin Wilcenski at the HBA of Greater Columbia

Monday, April 14, 2014

Flood Insurance Legislation Will Produce More Than $1 Billion in Housing Activity

We told you previously about the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act of 2014, recently enacted legislation championed by your Home Builders Association that will provide a significant boost to home building and remodeling as well as certainty and financial stability to the National Flood Insurance Program.

The numbers are in on the legislation, and NAHB's experts estimate that in 2014, the new law will result in a total of more than $1 billion of housing market activity, including:
  • $755 million in new home construction because the new law makes it easier for prospective new home buyers to sell their existing home and trade up.
  • $361 million in additional remodeling activity because the legislation eliminates insurance costs that some home owners would have been required to pay on certain remodeling jobs.
The recently enacted legislation provides a more affordable rate structure for policyholders and repeals the requirement that flood insurance premiums increase immediately to full actuarial rates when homes are sold. It also restores "grandfathering" for properties that were paying premiums applicable to their initial flood risk rating, allowing owners to pay premiums based on the original risk zone rather than updated flood risk zones.

In addition, the legislation requires the Federal Emergency Management Agency to take local flood control structures into account during the remapping process and provides reimbursement for successful consumer map appeals. It also restores the "substantial improvement threshold" that triggers a higher flood insurance rate to the historic 50 percent of a structure's fair market value, which is important for many remodelers.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Riverwood Farm Fire Relief

This week a brush fire caused the destruction of four homes in Riverwood Farm in Greer.  Four families have been displaced, including one that just moved into their home a few days earlier with four children under the age of five.

The Riverwood Farm Fire Fund has been established at Bank of America to assist the affected families.  You also may purchase a gift card for the families and deliver it to the Cothran Company, which is assisting the families.  Donations from Bed Bath and Beyond, Babies R Us, Dillard's, Belk's, Target, Walmart, or a Visa or Mastercard gift card are suggested.

For further information, contact

Pete Kellos
Cothran Company, LLC
420 The Parkway, Suite E, Greer, SC, 29650
(mail to P.O. Box 27049, Greenville, SC 29616)

Troy C. Usher

It is with sadness that we report to you the passing of Troy C. Usher, father of Todd Usher, Past President of your Home Builders Association and President of Addison Homes. A memorial service will be held on Monday April 7th at 2pm at Seneca Presbyterian Church, 115 West South 1st St. Reception to follow in the Fellowship Hall.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made in honor of Troy C. Usher to Honor Flight Upstate at http://www.honorflightupstatesc.com/2011/

Thursday, April 3, 2014

NAHB Reveals Most Popular Features Found in New Homes

During New Homes Month in April, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) is sharing with home buyers the most popular features in new single-family homes in 2014. Builders from across the country were surveyed on what features they were most likely to include in a typical single-family home this year, revealing that convenience, livability and energy efficiency are top priorities.

“Newly constructed homes can suit the specific requirements of today’s home buyers,” said NAHB Chairman Kevin Kelly, a home builder and developer from Wilmington, Del. “And now is a great time to consider buying a new home, as consumers can take advantage of competitive home prices and low interest rates to find the perfect new home for their families.”

Home builders are including features that are practical and functional for the daily lives of today’s home buyers. The features that are most likely to be included in a typical single-family home this year are:
  • a walk-in closet in the master bedroom
  • low-e windows
  • a laundry room and
  • a great room.
Energy efficiency is a key theme with Energy-Star rated appliances, programmable thermostats and Energy-Star rated windows at the top of the list. These features help make the home more comfortable and can save the home owner significant money over the long term. On a median per square-foot basis, home owners spent 78 cents per square foot per year on electricity, while owners of new homes spent 65 cents per square foot per year, according to data from the 2009 American Housing Survey (AHS).

Builders also list features such as granite countertops, a double sink and a central island as winning elements in new-home kitchens, and a linen closet and a private toilet in the bathroom. Additional features likely to be included throughout the home include first-floor ceilings at least nine-feet high, a front porch, outdoor lighting and a patio.

Home buyers can access home buying and home building information and resources on NAHB's website at nahb.org/forconsumers.

UPS Now your Home Builders Association Shipping Program

UPS is now your Home Builders Association’s small package and freight shipping program. HBA members receive a larger discount than our previous program.

Make the most out of your membership and take advantage of some of the most competitive rates available on shipping services with UPS. Whether you need your documents or packages to arrive the next day or are looking for the most affordable shipping option, UPS understands the importance of reliability, speed and cost. See how UPS discounts can help your bottom line:

• Up to 36% on UPS Air letters including UPS Next Day Air®*
• Up to 32% on UPS Air packages (1 lb.+)*
• Up to 34% on UPS International imports and exports
• Up to 24% on UPS Ground shipments
• Savings begin at 70% on UPS Freight® shipments over 150 lbs.

You can receive these discounts even if you already have a UPS account. Plus, the more you ship, the more you can save with UPS. To enroll and start saving, visit savewithups.com/NAHB or call 1-800-MEMBERS (1-800-636-2377), M-F, 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.

*Discounts exclude UPS Express Critical® and UPS Next Day Air® Early A.M.®