Saturday, June 12, 2010

NAHB's Chief Economist Explains Why It's Still a Good Time to Buy

A new YouTube video from NAHB's Production Group features our very own Chief Economist, David Crowe, answering specific questions about the current home buying environment. Now that the recently successful home buyer tax credit program has ended, he explains, there are still plenty of good reasons to consider homeownership — including mortgage rates that are near historic lows, attractive home prices that appear to have stabilized in many markets, and an excellent selection of new and existing homes on the market.

Dave also explains some of the benefits of buying a new home compared to an existing one, the tax advantages of homeownership and more. NAHB members and HBAs are invited to view this video and use it in a variety of ways to encourage and inform consumers. Its placement on YouTube is also meant to ensure its viewing by as many consumers/potential home buyers as possible. Contact for more information.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Fire Sprinkler Bill Becomes Law

On Monday evening, June 7, Governor Mark Sanford signed H.4663, legislation prohibiting the enforcement of mandatory automatic fire sprinklers in the new residential building code. The legislation prohibits enforcing the sprinkler provision of the building code before January 1, 2014.

The 2009 International Residential Code (IRC) is set to take effect on January 1, 2011. It includes a provision that all new single- and two-family homes have automatic fire sprinklers installed. The legislation blocked that provision and the earliest it can be enforced in 2014.

The legislation also requires that the IRC be subjected to the same administrative procedures of review as any other state agency regulation. That means that in the future the approval of the building code will require not only a hearing before the S.C. Building Codes Council, but also potentially the Administrative Law Court and the S.C. General Assembly.

While the automatic fire sprinkler provision is out of the 2009 IRC, the balance of the new residential code is set to take effect on January 1, 2011.

Removing the fire sprinkler provision was the top legislative priorty for the Home Builders Association of South Carolina. Your association overcame opposition from national groups which poured hundreds of thousands of dollars into the battle, and hundreds of firefighting professionals who support mandatory automatic fire sprinklers and many of whom visited the State House every day to oppose H.4663.

The legislative victory was hard fought and involved multiple visits to the State House by hundreds of home builders from around South Carolina, including dozens from Greenville and Pickens counties.

H.4663: your dues dollars at work. Read H.4663 by clicking here.

Fortune ranks Greenville one of the five best places to retire

Fortune Magazine recently rated Greenville one of the five best places to retire. The article cited affordable housing, a moderate climate, a great downtown, and proximity to Charlotte and Atlanta as qualities that make Greenville a great place to retire.

Read the Article

The other four places are Napa, California, Ann Arbor, Michigan, San Antonio, Texas, and Palm Coast, Florida.