Friday, October 9, 2015

We Did It! WOTUS Rule Stayed by Sixth Circuit Court

After months of hard work by your Home Builders Association, including a lawsuit brought by the National Association of Home Builders and member assistance, the Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) rule has been stayed nationwide by a 2-1 vote in the Sixth Circuit Court.

This rule, created by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the Clean Water Act, was based on flawed data and would have required all home builders and homeowners looking to build or renovate to inquire about any water found on the property. Their inquiry would have queued to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the group that makes jurisdictional decisions and issues permits.  Before the WOTUS rule, the Corps of Engineers was taking six months to issue a jurisdictional determination.  The WOTUS rule was expected to significantly delay any new development and add a new layer of regulation to areas that were previously unaffected by the Clean Water Act.

This ruling is extremely beneficial to home builders, remodelers, and a direct result of the work done by your Home Builders Association on behalf of the entire home building industry. 

Update: Disaster Relief Volunteer Opportunity

Update: Disaster Relief

We truly appreciate those who have already come forward to help our neighbors in Columbia. In light of their questions, we have more information regarding where to send donations and where volunteers should meet.

If you'd like to send a donation to assist BIA and HBA Members and their families, please make checks payable to Building Industry Charitable Foundation and send them to the following address:

Building Industry Charitable Foundation 
Attn: Earl McLeod 
625 Taylor St 
Columbia, SC 29201  
Members who would like to travel to Columbia to provide relief efforts directly to those suffering, please meet at Trenholm Road Methodist Church as they are coordinating with the families in greatest need. Any materials or trailers would be greatly appreciated. We are grateful for all of your help, and ask that you use caution when helping clean up after such a natural disaster. Please consult this document  which contains safety tips for the clean-up procedure in Columbia.

To: HBA Members
From: Michael Dey

Members have been asking me how they can help in Columbia and Charleston.  I have been in contact with my counterparts in both places and both are still assessing needs.  Charleston has experienced flooding like this before, and they seem to have a handle on their situation.  Our staff is helping them with public relations needs and they told me they would let me know what they need in terms of labor in a couple of days.

In Columbia, the obvious and immediate need is drinking water.  The Hilton Head HBA has organized a large shipment of water to the Columbia HBA for the members there.  And the Greater Greenville Association of Realtors is organizing a water caravan for Thursday.  If you would like to join that trip, or donate, please let me know and I will put you in touch with the Realtors Association.

In Columbia especially there are several HBA members and family who have been directly and tragically impacted by the flooding.  I know of several who have been evacuated from their homes, which are under water.  They are going to need a lot of help in terms of labor, material, and money.  I am working on the best route to handle money, so please standby on making a financial donation that would go directly to an HBA member in need.  

If you would like to donate your time, or your crews' time, to travel to Columbia, please contact me.  I will work with the HBA in Columbia to match you up with members in need.  I will even act as a guide to help get you to the proper address.

And if you can donate materials, I would like to match you up with the members who want to travel to Columbia to volunteer.  

The HBA is a family, and our family members in Columbia, in particular, have some significant needs.  I was in Columbia for two days this past weekend, very near to the worst of the disaster along Gills Creek.  The pictures do not do it justice.  What happened there is tragic.  Two entire cities, Forest Acres and Acadia Lakes, are literally under water.  The recovery is going to be time and labor intensive.  If you can help, please volunteer.  I think the immediate need will be clean up and demolition.  Long term the Columbia HBA has let me know that they are going to need qualified trades to come in and help. 

Let's help them out.  Please let me know what you can do, and when.


Wednesday, October 7, 2015

IRS to Provide Tax Relief to Flood Victims

IRS Provides Tax Relief to South Carolina Flood Victims; Oct. 15 Tax Deadline Extended to Feb. 16

WASHINGTON ––South Carolina flood victims, including individuals and businesses that previously received a tax-filing extension to Oct. 15, will have until Feb. 16, 2016, to file their returns and pay any taxes due, the Internal Revenue Service announced today. All workers assisting the relief activities who are affiliated with a recognized government or philanthropic organization also qualify for relief.
Following this week’s disaster declaration for individual assistance issued by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the IRS said that affected taxpayers in Berkeley, Charleston, Clarendon, Dorchester, Georgetown, Horry, Lexington, Orangeburg, Richland, Sumter and Williamsburg Counties will receive this and other special tax relief. Other locations may be added in coming days, based on damage assessments by FEMA.
The tax relief postpones various tax filing and payment deadlines that occurred starting on Oct. 1, 2015. As a result, affected individuals and businesses will have until Feb. 16, 2016, to file these returns and pay any taxes due. Besides the Oct. 15 extension deadline, this also includes the Jan. 15, 2016, deadline for making quarterly estimated tax payments. A variety of business tax deadlines are also affected including the Nov. 2, 2015, and Feb. 1, 2016, deadlines for quarterly payroll and excise tax returns.
The IRS will abate any interest, late-payment or late-filing penalty that would otherwise apply. The agency automatically provides this relief to any taxpayer with an IRS address of record located in the disaster area. Taxpayers need not contact the IRS to get this relief.

Beyond Designated Disaster Areas
The IRS will work with any taxpayer who lives outside the disaster area but whose records necessary to meet a deadline occurring during the postponement period are located in the affected area. Taxpayers qualifying for relief who live outside the disaster area need to contact the IRS at 866-562-5227.
Individuals and businesses who suffered uninsured or unreimbursed disaster-related losses can choose to claim them on either last year’s or this year’s return. Claiming these casualty loss deductions on either an original or amended 2014 return will get the taxpayer an earlier refund but waiting to claim them on a 2015 return could result in greater tax savings depending upon other income factors.
In addition, the IRS is waiving late-deposit penalties for federal payroll and excise tax deposits normally due on or after Oct. 1 and before Oct. 16 if the deposits are made by Oct. 16, 2015. Details on available relief can be found on the disaster relief page on
The tax relief is part of a coordinated federal response to the damage caused by severe storms and flooding and is based on local damage assessments by FEMA. For information on disaster recovery, visit
Disaster victims in other parts of the country also qualify for tax relief, based on federal disaster declarations issued earlier this year. Currently, individuals and businesses in parts of California, Kentucky, Texas and the Northern Mariana Islands may qualify for filing and payment relief. See the IRS Disaster Relief page for details.

Thank you to the IRS Newswire for sending this information and providing the details in issue number IR-2015-112.

Walt Disney World Picks Heirloom Custom Lights

Congratulations are in order as one of the HBA's members, The Heirloom Companies, was recently chosen by Walt Disney World to create custom lighting for the park's upcoming attraction. The new development, called Disney Springs, is set to open in 2016 with the feel of a small Florida town in the 1940s. Heirloom was selected to design and create sixteen "textured bronze" cupola lanterns to be featured on the main bridge at the new development.
"We are excited and honored that Disney World chose us for this job. It makes the entire team feel great that among all the talented artisans in the country they selected us." -Ben Moseley, The Heirloom Companies
When designing the lights, James Moseley describes a special process that creates a "unique, textured bronze" that conjures a weathered look that can also withstand the elements. As an outdoor park, it is crucial that the lights will last and function regardless of weather.

In addition to their exciting selection as the light designer for Walt Disney World, The Heirloom Companies also recently opened a storefront in downtown Greenville. Visit them in their new location or online at

US LBM completes GBS Building Supply acquisition

US LBM Holdings, LLC (“US LBM”) today announced the successful completion of its acquisition of GBS Building Supply located in Greenville, SC.

“The addition of GBS expands our presence in the southeast U.S. and represents our entry into the Carolinas, said L.T. Gibson, President & CEO of US LBM. “We are excited to partner with the GBS team and see many opportunities for enhanced growth with our new partnership.”

US LBM is a collection of leading building material distributors across North America, is the 3rd largest building products distributor in the United States, and recipient of the 2015 ProSales Dealer of the Year award. US LBM implements the philosophy of local management and leadership to capitalize on the premier reputation of its operating companies and local customer relationships.

To learn more about US LBM visit and for more information on GBS Building Supply, go to

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Erika DeRoberts Joins Coldwell Banker Caine

Coldwell Banker Caine hired Erika DeRoberts as the company’s Project Executive and Director of Developer Relations, effective today. She comes to Coldwell Banker Caine from serving as Branch Leader and Broker-in-Charge for another real estate company in the Upstate.
“I chose Coldwell Banker Caine for the company’s strength in leadership, the depth of its Upstate roots, the support and genuine care they have for those they serve, the reputation of being elite and first-class real estate professionals, and our shared vision, passion and drive to be the best,” DeRoberts stated.
As new home construction is experiencing pent-up demand and growth, the strategic partnerships between Coldwell Banker Caine and residential developers and builders are increasingly valuable.  Erika’s experience with new home community positioning, creative marketing and impressive sales results will help guide the success of these projects,” explained Stephen Edgerton, President and Chief Executive Officer of Coldwell Banker Caine.
In the role of Project Executive and Director of Developer Relations, DeRoberts will oversee the marketing and communications strategy for new construction projects and serve as a primary liaison with the developers in the Upstate in which Coldwell Banker Caine serves as the sales and marketing partner.
DeRoberts began her real estate career in 2005, working for a national builder in onsite sales.  She achieved Rookie of the Year by selling 26 town homes in her first five months and was awarded Salesperson of the Year the following year.  DeRoberts began training salespeople specializing in new homes and found her calling for helping others succeed.  Her real estate career beats to this drum:  Serve, edify and help others achieve their very best.
In 2010, DeRoberts was awarded National Rookie of the Year for assisting Upstate S.C. agents with their business and marketing plans, focusing on digital and online advertising.  As a branch leader and broker-in-charge for another Upstate real estate company, she grew her offices from 13 to 39 agents.  With individual support and training, the offices achieved significant growth.  She was awarded the Pride and Purpose and Rising Star awards in 2014.
After earning a Bachelors of Arts in Anthropology from Universidad de las Americas, in Cholula, Mexico, DeRoberts lived all over the United States, including Oklahoma, Illinois, Florida, Michigan, North Carolina. DeRoberts has called the Upstate home since 1998.
 Article courtesy of Coldwell Banker Caine

Monday, October 5, 2015

Tips to Extending the Summer in in Your Outdoor Living Spaces

As the summer months fade way, so do the longer days and carefree nights spent outdoors. With the darker, cooler nights ahead, it is important to start preparing your exterior spaces now for entertainment that will transcend the seasons. Our friends at Progress Lighting have some tips to extend your outdoor living experiences while improving your home’s aesthetic. 
           Illuminate your living spaces
Keep frequently used outdoor areas, such as decks or patios, appropriately lit so that your home remains welcoming. Fixtures that further the unique architectural elements of your home like decorative posts and wall lanterns offer beautiful accents along with their efficiency in keeping your exterior comfortable.
·         LED Lights
This type of light is highly energy efficient, meaning that your electricity bill will remain low while the longevity of LED technology keeps your outdoor lights low-maintenance. Improved color temperature options allow these once harsh lights to provide a warm, inviting glow that illuminates outdoor areas with comfort.
·         Brighten your pathways
Landscape lights can improve safety and security while also making your yard appear larger. Position lights on alternate sides of a pathway so that they provide even illumination, and avoid shadows from steps or plants.
·         Accent lighting techniques
Using unique light fixtures to highlight entryways and stationary pieces can create points of interest and focal points that engage visitors.
·         Remember balance and symmetry
In order to best illuminate your outdoors while avoiding an eyesore, remember that lighting should be proportional across the various areas of the property and remain symmetrical. Highlight existing symmetrical components of your home like columns or corresponding bushes with appropriate fixtures to draw the eye evenly.

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Image courtesy of Progress Lighting featuring Coventry path lights

Chili Cook-off event winning Best Dessert recipe. Ferga-licious Apple Dumplings.

If you were as curious as we were about what was in those delicious desserts and chili's at the Chili Cook-off event sponsored by Gateway Supply you are in luck as we were able to snag the winning dessert recipe from Susan at Ferguson Enterprises. 
Here's what you need to make Ferguson's winning Ferga-licious Apple Dumplings.

· 2 whole Granny Smith Apples, Cored And Peeled
· 2 cans Refrigerator Crescent Rolls
· 1 1/2 sticks Butter
· 1 cup White Sugar
· 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
· ½ cans Mountain Dew
· Ground Cinnamon

Cut apples into 8 slices each.
Roll each apple slice in a crescent roll. Place in a 9 x 13 buttered pan.
Melt butter, then add sugar and barely stir.
Add vanilla, stir, and pour over apples.
Pour Mountain Dew around the edges of the pan. Sprinkle with cinnamon and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.
Serve with ice cream, and spoon some of the sweet sauces from the pan over the top.

Just in time for Fall! Yum!
Pictured: Susan Smith and Mark Pollard of Ferguson Enterprises.