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Dear Fellow Industry Professionals,
Continuing this week’s articles, provided below is Part 4 of 5 in our series about how the pandemic is impacting our industry.
Today, we’re highlighting feedback that we have received from our member companies directly and received through other industry organizations also working to inform about best practices and possibilities for the future.
This article provides direct quotes from some of our members about where they think or market is heading and how they’re planning to cope with it. This is a good read for business owners and operators looking for feedback from your peers.
As always, we welcome your feedback so that we can better inform and help inspire during these challenging times. NCBPA and I personally are committed to supporting every company and individual that we can.
Take care and stay safe,
D. Ryan Miller
Founder & CEO, NCBPA
As no one is able to accurately forecast where our industry is heading in the coming months as a result of the pandemic, NCBPA recommends that member companies and professionals stay informed and look for signals in our market, no matter how large or small. Our role in this process is to help alleviate the stress and time-consuming task of finding this information. Last week, we posted 46 industry news articles in our Members-Only Portal, about a quarter of which dealt with the pandemic, to help member professionals more easily find helpful information, whether pandemic-related or not.
In addition, NCBPA continues to seek and share feedback from our member companies about how their businesses are handling these uncertain times now, and where they see our industry going in the future. As a follow-up to Part 1, we have summarized below some of the feedback from our members and have also highlighted how select industry organizations are thinking ahead to what our industry may look and feel like during the recovery and post-pandemic months to come.
NCBPA is of the opinion that our industry has an opportunity to capitalize on our services being essential and the results of our work being an important part of stimulus and recovery efforts. We look forward to working with industry allies and policymakers to craft solutions that include our industry’s companies in efforts to assess, build, repair and maintain homes and buildings across the state in ways that support economic and workforce development.
But, as we have seen in our state following recent hurricanes and droughts, more than a clamoring of ideas and proposals for reconstruction, resilience and sustainability, we need firm action. Unfortunately, our industry has not been able to capitalize on recent calls for improved building codes, resiliency planning and sustainability measures as a result of recent natural disasters. Much more attention to ways that these needs can be cemented into stimulus and recovery efforts is needed.
General feedback from our members on what they see for the coming months includes:
- Both the residential and commercial new construction industries are predicted to gradually slow down in the coming months from their current pace as a result of a recession that will inhibit construction and services tied to new construction starts.
- Companies working in existing commercial buildings predict a similar slow down as renovation and repair projects may lose financing or priority in favor of other initiatives at institutions, public buildings or private corporations take precedence.
- Companies working in existing homes, which have been hit the hardest, predict that business will slowly pick back up as restrictions are lifted and consumers slowly become more comfortable with having workers back in their homes. Many foresee an intersection of the work of these companies coming back online in the coming months at the same time as similar work of companies in residential new construction may begin to slow.
- Energy efficiency and utility programs will continue to lack momentum as liability concerns continue in the months to come, though work in these programs are in most cases currently deemed essential services and may be fully available across the state a few weeks from now.
Provided here are a few quotes provided by members during the past week:
- “We don’t expect to see residential new construction volume related layoffs by the end of April. By the end of May, we expect to start tasting the results of a precipitous drop in demand, rising unemployment, and increasing challenges to obtaining new mortgages.”
- “What would be best for us is if any stimulus that happens when the country is digging itself out of this economic hole could have a robust commitment to energy efficiency. This would be an investment that would pay all of us back, financially and in terms of cleaner air and streams. It would allow us to make up for the natural reduction in work that will probably happen, and potentially add employees from sectors that are likely not going to come back at 100% for a long time, if ever.”
- “While we have been able to maintain enough work for everyone due to residential construction being “essential”, I am concerned that a recession is approaching that will affect new construction in a negative way that may impact our ability to keep all of our current employees. We are certainly not looking to add anyone right now.”
Here are a select few news articles that describe where some industry organizations believe sectors of our industry are heading in the coming months, and how companies may take advantage of them:
- NAESCO: Building the Post-Pandemic Economy with Energy Infrastructure
- Research Triangle Cleantech Cluster: How COVID-19 is Affecting NC’s Cleantech Sector, Alarming Implications and Unique Opportunities
- NAHB: Builder Confidence Posts Historic Decline on Coronavirus Pandemic
- ACEEE: COVID-19 Sparks Relief Efforts in Efficiency Industry
Where do you think our industry is heading? Contact us with your feedback.