Brian Miller of Northern Kentucky, who was named Executive Officer of the Year for 2017, congratulates Dallas Builders Association Executive Officer Phil Crone. (Courtesy Photo)

From Staff Reports

It’s been a pretty big year for Phil Crone, the executive officer of the Dallas Builders Association, and getting recognized by your industry has to be the icing on the cake for him. The Dallas Builders Association relaunched their Parade of Homes, hosted a City Council debate, and worked to get more trade education in public schools — all initiatives that deserve recognition. 

And that’s exactly what Crone received on July 24 with the National Association of Home Builders named him Executive Officer of the Year. The award was presented at the annual Association Management Conference in Baltimore and honors a dedicated executive officer whose actions, commitments, and accomplishments in a single year has been truly exceptional. In addition, Crone was recognized for promotion of the national Executive Officer’s Council and for assisting in the advancement of his peers. The award is in memory of Gary Komarow, former chief legal counsel of NAHB.

In 2014, Crone received the New Executive Officer Award, which is presented to an EO who has served no more than three years in an association management position, but who is judged to have made major contributions to the profession during that time. Crone has served as the Association’s executive officer since January 2013.

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By Phil Crone
Executive Officer
Dallas Builders Association

In the midst of a nationwide, 10-year low in affordability, the housing industry is bracing for additional tariffs. From tile to countertops, laminates, lighting, and furnishing, about 450 products commonly found in new homes and remodeling projects are seeing tariffs rise from 10 percent to 25 percent due to the escalating trade war between the United States and China.

According to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), homeowners and homebuilders nationwide will be paying an additional $2.5 billion. Existing tariffs on Chinese imports and Chinese retaliatory tariffs already reduce U.S. Gross Domestic Product by 0.15 of a point. These additional tariffs will lower GDP by another half a point. While painful, they should not, in and of themselves, induce a recession.

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I’m a wee skeptical of The National Association of Home Builders 2018 survey of “thousands of U.S. homebuyers” for must-haves.

I have no doubt these things were tops on consumer’s wish list, and were accurately reported. I just think housing preferences are more regional. And this list is too national. 

These are features buyers ranked as most likely to be required in a house:  (more…)

From Staff Reports

With lumber tariffs already adding more than $6,000 to the price of every new home in Dallas, President Trump’s decision this month to escalate the trade conflict with China has builders bracing for more challenges to housing affordability. This decision could wind up imposing a $2.5 billion tax increase on residential construction, according to the National Association of Home Builders.

Trump announced he is moving immediately to impose 10 percent tariffs on an additional $200 billion worth of Chinese imports, including $10 billion of goods used by the home building industry. This 10 percent levy represents a $1 billion tax increase on residential construction. Making matters even worse, the tax hike will rise to $2.5 billion on Jan. 1 when the president said the tariff rate will jump to 25 percent if the two nations have not resolved their differences by year end. If China retaliates, Trump has vowed to place tariffs on an additional $267 billion worth of imports. The NAHB has strongly opposed this move.

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affordable housing

Wages have not kept apace with housing costs in Texas, resulting in a shortage of affordable housing.

After the housing market bubble burst, what markets recovered the fastest? What does that mean for affordable housing? What policy changes would best impact the need for affordable housing?

Experts weighed in at a recent conference on affordable housing in Texas, held at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. (more…)

 

On average, the North Texas labor shortage is adding two months and $4,000 to the cost of every home.

By Phil Crone
Executive Officer, Dallas Builders Association

“The guest worker program unnecessarily lowers construction worker wages.”

“Put simply, there is no construction labor shortage.”

“It’s five o’clock somewhere. And maybe there’s a construction worker shortage, too, somewhere. But it’s not significant in the U.S., and it’s not very widespread.”

Would you believe that all of these are recent quotes from organizations involved in the construction industry? Believe it or not, they were recently published in Illinois and Michigan. I share them because I want to illustrate the labor demand difference between the laggers and leaders of our nation’s economy. It also demonstrates the uphill battle that looms for any type of legislative fix for immigration and long-term cure to our labor shortage.

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windsong-ranch-common-area

We knew it the first time we saw it: there was just something very special, warm and inviting about the Welcome Center at Windsong Ranch. We didn’t feel as if we were looking at a sales office, or event a home development marketing center.

We felt like we were arriving at a Kimpton Hotel and the refreshments were just around the corner! Come on in, put your feet up.

So it comes as no surprise that the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) National Sales and Marketing Council (NSMC) recently named Windsong Ranch’s Welcome Center the best in the country. That’s right, BEST IN THE COUNTRY! The National Sales and Marketing Council’s new home sales and marketing awards salute and honor the best in the building industry for their determination, integrity, creativity and endurance.

More than 1,300 entries were received for this year’s awards.

windsong-ranch-back-of-commons

“We knew our Welcome Center had to stand out,” said Craig Martin, Founding Partner of Terra Verde Group, the developer of Windsong Ranch.  “Along with all of the great amenities, what really gives us an edge is the Windsong Café where residents can get a cup of coffee or fresh food cooked with locally sourced ingredients.”

Like we said, refreshments just around the corner, locally sourced be they vegetables from a Windsong Ranch garden, or fresh honey from a ranch hive.

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Tim Jackson Custom Homes' Maison d'Etoile won first place in the "Best Architectural Design - Traditional" category.

Tim Jackson Custom Homes’ Maison d’Etoile won first place in the “Best Architectural Design – Traditional” category.

As we told you last week, the Dallas Builders Association each year honors the work of its members, some of North Texas’ top building and remodeling talent, with an Oscars-like celebration of glamorous dress and beverage. They put on the Ritz for the annual ARC Awards ceremony.

And of course, half of those winners are my CandysDirt Best Builders! All CandysDirt.com-approved home builders are curated from a select group of home builders. Click here to see what they told us about the top building trends for 2015.

There are 50 categories, and the judges are top builders and designers from way outside of Texas. Well, except for Oklahoma.

The celebration, held this year at The Westin Galleria, was a blast. Tim Lansford of Luxury Homes of Texas was the emcee, and teased the heck out of  Tom Greico of Greico Modern Homes, (“BOOOO!”)  But not moi — Tom is another CandysDirt.com fave.

Turns out Tim is not just a home builder, he has his own radio show!

As we mentioned, for the second year in a row, Classic Urban Homes snagged Custom Builder of the Year title. Not too far behind was my man Tim Jackson Custom Homes, also nominated for best, who snagged Best Architectural Design $1 to $2 million. One of his entries was a palace he built called Maison d’Etoile for former Cowboys linebacker Bradie James. Bradie and his wife, Star, slipped in and dined with Tim and Leslie Jackson and watched the show. Other home builders extraordinaire who needed U-Hauls for their prize booty besides the aforementioned: Alford Homes, Desco Fine Homes, Cresswell Builders, our very own JLD Custom Homes, LRO Residential, Bauhaus Custom Homes and of course, Greico Modern Homes.

Desco Fine Homes won the award for "Best 'Other' Room" with their stunning beauty salon.

Desco Fine Homes won the award for “Best ‘Other’ Room” with their stunning beauty salon.

Now a little inside dirt on the photo above: this was a remodel, in Preston Hollow, by Desco Fine Homes. Took two years to complete. The lady of the house wanted a home beauty salon — they are all the rage, by the way — so Desco fashioned one above her master bathroom. Can you imagine waltzing up the stairs to get blown out? I am loving this new trend, and mind you we will be posting more on it!

Here are all the winners in all categories… and the photos. Drool away…

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