Dallas Builders Association

Students at Skyline High School’s construction trades program had the chance to meet with members of the Dallas Builders Association this month as part of the DBA’s initiative to work with Dallas ISD. (Photo courtesy Dallas Builders Association)

A few months ago, Dallas Builders Association president Michael Turner of Classic Urban Homes voiced a desire to address a need for more skilled workers by working with Dallas ISD to train and mentor students.

In February, Turner began to reach out. “We have builders that are willing to mentor high school kids,” he said then, calling the push to work with local schools “probably my biggest initiative.”

And in a few short months, Turner is beginning to see that come to fruition. In March, he and Dallas Builders Association executive officer Phil Crone met with Doug Palmer and Cody Seabolt, instructors with Skyline High School’s construction trades program. (more…)

UNT Team

Michael Garza, Jacob Flores, Esther Valero, Bobbie M. Daniels, Dawson Guerrettaz, and Juan Lopez will represent the University of North Texas at the Race to Zero competition.

Green building and design is one of the fastest growing segments of today’s homebuilding market as more and more homebuyers looking to avoid the high energy bills summer’s blazing temperatures often bring.

To train and encourage the green building professionals of tomorrow, the U.S. Department of Energy is hosting 40 teams from 34 schools across the United states, Canada, Norway, and China for its Race to Zero Student Design Competition. And with the guidance and encouragement of the Dallas Builders Association, the University of North Texas’ Association of Construction Engineering Technology will send its very own team to the National Renewable Energy Lab in Golden, Colo., this weekend.

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A freak hail storm a few years ago completely wrecked the tile roofs of the historic Swiss Avenue neighborhood. (Photo: Amy Curry)

A freak hail storm a few years ago completely wrecked the tile roofs of the historic Swiss Avenue neighborhood. (Photo: Amy Curry)

By Phil Crone
Special Contributor

Make no mistake, storm season in North Texas can be a scary experience, even for lifelong residents. Especially this time of year, we are no strangers to hearing the eerie wail of tornado sirens or posting photos of hail that confirm to the rest of the nation that everything is bigger in Texas.

For storm victims, the scariest thing next to the storm itself is cleaning up and getting their lives back on track. These fears are well founded. Smashed cars, personal belongings scattered about by Mother Nature, and leaky roofs from every subsequent rain create a feeling of vulnerability one can only imagine unless they’ve been through it themselves. Vulnerable people are the prey of the lowest of segments of our society and, in the contracting world, we call those storm chasers.

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Drees Custom Homes nabbed Builder of Year honors

Drees Custom Homes nabbed Builder of Year honors

I have to thank the Dallas Builders Association (DBA) for a very good “last meal” before a business trip to Orlando last week.  With 63 categories, it certainly wasn’t a small, small world that packed the Westin Galleria.  This year’s festivities were kept on track by former Good Morning Texas host Amy Vanderoef who did an enviable job of moving the crowd through its paces.

MC Amy Vanderoef amused by an appreciative audience

Emcee Amy Vanderoef amused by an appreciative audience

It was also a different kind of awards from our usual DBA coverage.  The ARC awards in the summer honor single-family homes and renovations.  The McSAM awards are for developers who build communities and their associated services.

Here are a smattering of the winners:

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State of the Industry Summit Logo-V2_312551211

The economic climate in Dallas and in the nation has shone a light on the challenges our region faces: labor shortages, tight housing supply, and steadily increasing home prices. What does the future look like considering the conditions today?

Find out that and more during the Dallas Builders Association “State of the Industry” Summit from 9 to 11:30 a.m. April 13 at the Crowne Plaza in Addison. Registration, which is open now on the DBA website, includes breakfast compliments of StrucSure Home Warranty. The event — a general meeting for DBA members — will include a panel discussion from top industry professionals led by Meyers Research. You’ll find the answers to the burning questions coursing through the industry’s minds:

  • When will the labor shortage ease up?
  • What role will millennials play in the Dallas market?
  • How has President Trump’s first 100 days impacted housing?
  • How will the rising interest rates, land prices and material cost impact housing affordability?

Jump to find out more about the esteemed panel of experts:

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Photo: www.GlynLowe.com via Creative Commons

Photo: www.GlynLowe.com via Creative Commons

By Phil Crone
Executive Officer, Dallas Builders Association

With so much of the news cycle focusing on Washington, D.C., many may be unaware that Texas is in the thick of a legislative session. That will certainly change soon as we approach the March 10 bill filing deadline and debate heats up on topics ranging from the budget to bathrooms. For the residential construction industry that represents more than $31 billion in economic activity and more than 702,000 jobs in the state—there is a lot on the line.

As it stands right now, our Association has more than 50 pages of bills in our “decision list,” meaning they have an impact on home building one way or another. While the Texas legislative process is designed to kill bills as opposed to passing them (the old Schoolhouse Rock Bill on Capitol Hill skit rarely has a happy ending in Austin), we nonetheless are optimistic that this session will be a positive one for the housing industry.

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home builders Bella Vita

When the homebuilders whose signs you’ve seen around your neighborhood suddenly declare bankruptcy, it can give you pause. But when news of those bankruptcies opens a floodgate of customers with unhappy experiences, prospective homebuyers begin to worry even more.

After Bella Vita Custom Homes and M. Christopher Custom Home Builder filed for bankruptcy last month, we’ve been hearing from worried folks that have been considering building a new home.

The questions were consistent: “How do I know this won’t happen to me?” and “How do I avoid choosing a bad builder?”

With that in mind, I reached out to Phil Crone, executive officer of the Dallas Builders Association, to get some advice.  I’ll also share an extra step I take when choosing a contractor that can also be applied to choosing a home builder.

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New House under Construction

A shortage of skilled workers is putting the construction industry in a bind, says Dallas Builders Association executive director Phil Crone.

By Phil Crone
Executive Officer, Dallas Builders Association

These days, any article about President Trump, especially one that is an opinion piece, is bound to be read with a certain level of trepidation. That being said, how he addresses the labor shortage will be the barometer by which the construction industry evaluates his presidency.

Certainly, actions to peel back costly regulations are welcome and applauded, but — in the Dallas area at least — the lack of boots on the ground is currently a much larger concern than any amount of red tape.

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