Temperatures failing to reach 60° are not what I expected at the NAHB Spring Board meetings in Washington during the first week in June. With the committee meeting rooms being kept at the same temperature, we all stayed awake! As usual, I concentrated on the meetings of the NAHB Remodelers subcommittees; and, as usual, picked up useful pieces of information.
Consumers Value Green
The first was a report given by John Ritterpusch of the NAHB Green Remodeling committee describing a consumer survey they just completed. In this survey they tried to determine what characteristics of “green” do consumers value and to which terms they best relate. The following 3 benefits of green came out on top, in this order:
- Energy efficiency
- Health aspects of Indoor Air Quality
Comparing common terms used to describe benefits or characteristics of a green home can provide guidance for contractors as they talk with their clients and can help in marketing materials.
- “Comfortable” was preferred over “livable.”
- “High quality construction” is preferable to “advanced construction.”
- “Universal design” beats “aging in place.”
Your Designations on Houzz
Second is a little tidbit for those who have NAHB educational designations and a presence on Houzz. In a few weeks you will be able to put your membership and designations up on your Houzz profile. These badges will link to a description of the designations and the benefits they can provide the consumer.
OSHA on Confined Spaces
The third is a heads-up in regard to OSHA’s final rule issued on May 4 in regard to working in confined spaces. Unless you are under a state-specific rule, they will begin enforcing it on August 25. Appertaining to remodelers this rule does include crawl spaces and attics, provided they contain hazardous conditions. As for hazards, one can expect the obvious—lack of oxygen supply, explosives, etc.—but the wording also includes “or any other significant safety hazards.” These can include things like a whole house fan, some kind of electrical hazard, or even a tripping hazard. If the space falls under the rule, then the job will have to go through the full permitting process applicable to confined spaces. Read more detailed information.