View from the top of the Latter.
Dubbed the “non-composite composite decking,” NyloDeck uses recycled carpet fibers in its composition rather than wood or PVC. Designed to be eco-friendly, the material offers a wood-grain look in five colors, and is impervious to water, mold, mildew, and termites. NyloDeck will not rot or swell, and is stain-resistant and UV-protected, the maker says. Strength and rigidity allow the material to span joists up to 24 inches-on-center. Also available in sheets. NyloBoard | 877.695.6909 |nyloboard.com
Takes Builders by Surprise
Published: March 20, 2013
SACRAMENTO — After six years of waiting on the sidelines, newly eager home buyers across the country are discovering that there are not enough houses for sale to accommodate the recent flush of demand.
Max Whittaker for The New York Times
“In my 27 years I’ve never seen inventories this low,” said Kurt K. Colgan, a broker withLyon Real Estate in the Sacramento metropolitan area, where the share of homes on the market has plummeted by one of the largest amounts in the nation. “I’ve also never seen a market turn so quickly.”
The housing turnaround seems to have caught almost everyone in the business by surprise. As desirable as the long-awaited improvement may be, the unusually low level of homes for sale is creating widespread problems for buyers and sellers alike, leading to bidding wars and bubblelike price jumps in places that not long ago were suffering from major declines. In the Sacramento area, where the housing bust took an especially heavy toll, the median sales price has surged 15 percent over the last year, according to Zillow.
Nationwide, sales prices rose 7.3 percent over the course of 2012, according to the Standard & Poor’s Case-Shillerindex, ranging from a slight decline in New York to a surge of 23 percent in Phoenix. Tracking more closely with the national trend were cities like Dallas, up 6.5 percent; Tampa, which rose 7.2 percent; and Denver, which gained 8.5 percent.
In many areas, builders are scrambling to ramp up production but face delays because of the difficulty of finding construction workers and in obtaining permits from suddenly overwhelmed local authorities. At the same time, homeowners — many of them lifted above water for the first time in years — often remain reluctant to sell, either because they want to wait and see how much further prices will climb or because they are afraid of being displaced in the sudden buying frenzy.
“You see a home go for sale and within a couple days there are three, four, six offers,” said Carrie Miskawi, a mother of three young children who has been looking for a new home for the last six months with Mr. Colgan’s help. She and her husband have decided not to put their current home on the market because they fear it will be snatched up before they have a chance to bid successfully on a new one.
“It’s kind of a Catch-22,” Mr. Colgan said. As long as large numbers of people are hesitant to put their own homes on the market because so few other homes are available, he said, there won’t be many homes available.
Across the country, the raw number of homes for sale is at its lowest level since 1999, according to the National Association of Realtors. In the Sacramento metro area, home listings were down 60 percent in January from a year earlier, compared with 23 percent for the country over all, according to Zillow.
Inventories have been whittled down largely because new construction ground to a standstill for several years. Investors large and small have also scooped up most of the backlog of foreclosures and short sales; about 40 percent of all homes bought in Sacramento County over the last year were purchased by owners who currently live at a different address, according to county records and title data provided by the Fidelity National Title Insurance Company.
But steady job growth has put more people back to work, and families that put off moving because they couldn’t afford it are finally ready to do so. “Distressed” sales are down and conventional sales are up.
Extraordinarily low mortgage rates don’t hurt, either.
“The recovery is real,” said John Burns, chief executive ofJohn Burns Real Estate Consulting. “But the pace of the recovery has an artificial component to it.”
Some real estate agents in Sacramento, like Tom Phillips, have resorted to knocking on doors in desirable neighborhoods to see if the owners might, if asked nicely and promised a healthy gain, sell to one of his clients. One couple he represents, Darcey and Jason Schmelzer, just moved into a yearlong rental with their two boys because they sold before they could find a new place. They received four offers on the first day they put their home on the market, with the winning bid about $10,000 above asking price.
For the builders who survived the collapse, the tight market is a signal to get back to work.
Monthly permits for single-family homes in the Sacramento area more than doubled from January 2012 to January 2013, though they are still only a quarter of the level they reached during the bubble. Nationally, the construction industry added 48,000 jobs in February, the biggest increase since 2007.
The housing upturn looks set to continue, finally adding a crucial element of support to the slowly improving economy. The government reported Tuesday that housing permits, while far below their peak, surged in February to their highest level since June 2008, an increase of nearly 34 percent from a year earlier. But it will still be many months before new homes now going through the approval process will be ready to move in.
|download press release »03/08/2013|
CertainTeed Offers Multiple Cladding and Color Options with New “No Place Like Home” Brochure(Valley Forge, Pa.) – Homeowners looking to update their home’s exterior and expand their outdoor living spaces will find plenty of inspiration in the new "No Place like Home" brochure from CertainTeed. The brochure guides homeowners through the decision-making process of mixing and matching CertainTeed’s many exterior siding materials, styles and colors in addition to a broad selection of trim, railing, decking, fence, and roofing options.
With countless ideas and tips to achieve a well-coordinated design that blends styles, textures, sustainable materials and the broadest color palette on the market, the brochure gives homeowners industry-leading advice to find the right look for their home.
“We truly believe there is no place like home and we want to provide as many tools and resources as possible to help homeowners easily maximize their home’s potential,” says Xavier LeBlanc, director of product marketing for CertainTeed Siding. “With the largest selection of materials, styles, textures and colors on the market today, CertainTeed is proud to offer homeowners endless design possibilities.”
The “No Place Like Home” brochure also provides the latest trends from the experts – including strong colors, mixing-and-matching of materials, dark trim, roof colors and the use of two or more exterior wall colors to ensure a home leaves a lasting impression. CertainTeed offers user-friendly visualization and design tools to give homeowners confidence when selecting the right colors, styles and textures.
For more information or to request a copy of the “No Place Like Home” brochure, call (800) 782-8777.
CertainTeed offers unsurpassed Freedom of Choice™ through its industry-leading portfolio of long-lasting polymer, fiber cement, insulated and vinyl siding as well as fence, railing, decking and exterior trim. CertainTeed offers the advantage of using exterior products from a single source that are designed to mix-and-match with each other and feature authentic textures, versatile styles and rich color combinations, for a beautifully coordinated look. As the result of a strong commitment to environmental responsibility, CertainTeed is the first manufacturer to issue and publish third-party validated life cycle assessments (LCA) for its vinyl, fiber cement siding and trim product lines. For more information, visit www.certainteed.com/freedomofchoice.
Through the responsible development of innovative and sustainable building products, CertainTeed, headquartered in Valley Forge, Pa., has helped shape the building products industry for more than 100 years. Founded in 1904 as General Roofing Manufacturing Company, the firm's slogan "Quality Made Certain, Satisfaction Guaranteed," quickly inspired the name CertainTeed. Today, CertainTeed® is North America’s leading brand of exterior and interior building products, including roofing, siding, fence, decking, railing, trim, foundations, pipe, insulation, gypsum, ceilings and access covers.
A subsidiary of Saint-Gobain, the world’s largest building products company, CertainTeed and its affiliates have more than 5,700 employees and more than 60 manufacturing facilities throughout the United States and Canada. Recognized as a 2009 and 2010 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, CertainTeed earned the 2011 and 2012 ENERGY STAR Sustained Excellence Award, the highest level of recognition for outstanding contributions to protecting the environment through energy efficiency. The group had total sales of approximately $3.3 billion in 2012. www.certainteed.com
We've said it before, and we'll say it again: Homeowners are increasingly investing in ways to make their existing home designs work better for them since many owners are deciding to stay put rather than move.
But good design doesn't stop at the kitchen, the bathroom, the clever under-stairs storage, or the creative shifting of room functions. Exteriors must also work hard.More than offering safety from the elements, siding boost curb appeal and, when done well, wraps the house like a gift that homeowners get to open every time they pull into the driveway.
Siding programs such as Ply Gem's Designed Exterior (designedexterior.com) and Exterior Portfolio by Crane (exteriorportfolio.com) have had great success in giving contractors and remodelers easy access to siding design ideas and the products to bring those ideas to life.
Building on this mix-and-match concept, the collection of products in the slideshow at left represents a range of products currently available. Choose one siding item, one stone accent, and one trim design and you're on your way to a new stylish exterior design. -Lauren Hunter