Friday, September 12, 2014

Upstate: a luxury home market?

According to the morereport, Greenville/Spartanburg is a strong market for luxury homes.  Check out these statistics of home closings by price range:
  • July 1, 2013-June 30, 2014: 34 homes closed for more than $1 million
  • July 1, 2013-June 30, 2014: 82 homes closed for $750,000 to $999,999
  • July 1, 2012-June 30, 2013: 24 homes closed for more than $1 million
  • July 1, 2012-June 30, 2013: 49 homes closed for $750,000 to $999,999
These numbers are supported by The Market Edge, which found that 18 percent of all homes permitted in the Upstate were over 4,000 square feet in size or more than $400,000 in permitted value.  By comparison, Asheville is similar at about 19 percent, Charlotte is 16 percent, Raleigh is 22 percent, and Columbia is 13 percent.

Sources: and

SEER Standard for Residential HVAC Standards Will Change in 2015

The U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) minimum efficiency standards for residential HVAC systems will change in January.  The change specifically affects Southern states, including South Carolina.  For Southern states, the new standard applies to all systems while in Northern states a split system will still be allowed at 13 SEER.

Effective January 1, 2015, manufacturers will only manufacture 14 SEER or higher for use in Southern states.  Existing inventory of 13 SEER systems may still be installed as long as they are available on the market.

According to an analysis of 13 SEER and 14 SEER systems currently available on the market, the new standard will add about $200 to $300, depending on the size of the system, to the cost of a new HVAC system, plus installation costs.  However, cost for the higher-efficiency systems should ease over time.

The current minimum standard, 13 SEER, was set in 2006 when.  Prior to that the minimum standard was 10 SEER.

To read more about the minimum efficiency standards at, click here.

Members Save $ on your IBS registration in September

September is the only chance for members to take advantage of the best pricing on registration to the building industry’s biggest event! And this year, an IBS expo pass also gives access to the four other exhibit floors of Design & Construction Week™ – KBIS, IWCE, Las Vegas Market and TISE.

Top 4 reasons to register in September:
  1. FREE IBS expo pass – See more than 500,000 net square feet of exhibits and 1,300 manufacturers and suppliers of the latest and most in-demand products and services.
  2. Save $100 off IBS full registration – IBS education is in demand! The number of attendees getting full registrations (with access to all education sessions) has grown 40% over the past two years and speaker ratings are at an all-time high! With more than 100+ education sessions in 10 tracks attendees are sure to gain the knowledge to improve their business.
  3. HBA housing block – Take advantage of great hotel properties at discounted rates and complimentary shuttle service to/from the Las Vegas Convention Center.
  4. Spouse registration – Registration for spouses is FREE during the month of September!
Register at

Builder Tailgate Event! Friday, September 19th 5-9pm at the Southern Home and Garden Show!

This event is open to all HBA of Greenville Members. Please call the HBA office at 864-254-0133 for more information.

GBS' Nick Campbell is a Best and Brightest 35 and Under

Nick Campbell
Greenville Business Magazine has named Nick Campbell, Director of Sales at GBS Building Supply, one of its 36 Best and Brightest 35 and Under.  To read Nick's profile, click here and scroll to page 54.

Dr. David Crowe Presents the Current State of the Housing Market

Dr. David Crowe
In a special edition of Housing Now, Dr. David Crowe discusses the current state of the housing market, and his current forecast for 2015.

Click here to watch Dr. Crowe's update.

Dr. Crowe is projecting the following for 2015:
  • Remodeling: 3.2 percent increase over 2014, which will fall 2 percent over 2013.
  • Multifamily: Up 3 percent in 2015 following a 14 percent jump in 2014.
  • Single Family: Up 35 percent in 2015 following a 5 percent increase in 2014.
Crowe Comments that Single Family is still just a little more than half recovered in terms of a level he considers normal. However, he projects South Carolina to be in the top 20 percent of states at the end of 2015, and above historically normal levels.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Todd Usher will mentor Clemson's NAHB Competition Team

Todd Usher
Todd Usher is helping a team of seven Clemson University students prepare for the National Association of Home Builders’ Student Chapters Residential Construction Management Competition (RCMC).

The students – all juniors and seniors in Clemson’s Construction Science and Management program – are competing with peers from across the country as they apply skills learned in the classroom to a real-world construction project. Each team receives a problem statement outlining an actual project for which they must produce working drawings, schedules, budgets, project management, sustainability standards, sales and marketing, and pricing/financial analysis; then, they must defend their overall proposal to a group of construction company executives.

“The Residential Construction Management Competition provides the most real-world experience these students are likely to have prior to graduation,” says Usher, president of Addison Homes, who prepped the Clemson team on sustainable construction methods and materials. “It’s a hands-on opportunity to put theory into practice.”

Having industry professionals mentor the Clemson team takes students well beyond their reference books, says Jason Lucas, assistant professor in Clemson’s department of Construction Science and Management.

“Having Todd come in and discuss his experiences provides students with a current market view and practical application of the theories we discuss in class,” Lucas says. “By going over the National Green Building Standard and ICC 700 worksheet, he took something that was abstract to them and put it into practical terms. This gives the students a real headstart getting into the RCMC project.”

The Clemson RCMC team received their problem statement Monday, Sept. 8, and will defend their proposal in front of judges – and an audience – during the International Builders’ Show in January in Las Vegas.