Category Archives: biaw

Washington State building permits increase: A positive sign.

Now that our Seattle and Wenatchee home inspection company offers HVAC testing (duct blaster) for new construction homes we like to keep an eye on the new construction permits.  The 2009 Energy Code for HVAC Sealing requires a third-party verifier to make sure the HVAC system complies with the minimum performance requirement, therefore, we are hired to conduct the HVAC duct testing.

In the May/June issue of the BIAW’s Building Insight Newsletter the chart below displayed a positive sign of recovery in the building industry since 2010.  Spokane, Pierce, King, Franklin and Benton Counties helped to push the May 2011 building permits over the May 2010 totals.  The overall improvement for 2011 shows a 38% increase in building permits year-to-date in May.  Chelan, Mason, Kittatas, Cowlitz, Island and Jefferson Counties didn’t have much change from May 2010 to May 2011.  Let’s hope the trend keeps improving for Washington’s building and real estate industries.

Leavenworth home inspection

Source: BIAW Building Insight, Residential Building Permits Issued May 2011

Washington building industry to recover by end of 2012.

Our Wenatchee home inspection company is a member of the North Central Home Builders Association.  In the May/June issue of the Building Industry Association of Washington’s Building Insight Newsletter they included the chart below.  The green states show the best recovery predicted from 18 months from now.  These are promising numbers.  It is careful to note that the building demand may return but the cost of building may also increase.  With many out-of-work skilled laborers finding different jobs and mills shutting down during this construction lull the labor and materials may be in short supply and thus increasing the cost of new homes.  Those that are able to make investments right now are in a fine position to get the best deals.

Wenatchee Home Inspections

Source: BIAW Building Insight May/June 2011

Home Show in Wenatchee: Feb. 11-13th

Home Show Wenatchee Town Toyota CenterEvery year the NCHBA or North Central Home Builders Association produces a spectacular home show in Wenatchee, Washington.  There’s a little something for everyone whether you are interested in remodeling, decorating, building, buying or selling a home…they’ve got all the experts there for your questions!  Here’s some info from their website.  Download this COUPON for $1 off admission:

This year, we have a lot of new things going on and are very excited to “get the Show on the road”! The Kid’s Zone by Lowe’s is going to be fantastic this year. Not only will the kids be able to build their own project with a professional from Lowe’s, they can go on a scavenger hunt with their parents or enjoy FREE ice skating on Friday and Saturday. So, if you have kids that are 12 and under, make sure to take them to the Kids Zone by Lowe’s, located in the Crunch-Pak Hospitality Room on the the main floor of the Town Toyota Center!  Workshops and How-to’s that you WON’T want to miss! Come and see what the Master Gardeners have to demonstrate on Friday, Saturday and Sunday of the show!   Be one of the first 250 attendees on Saturday and Sunday and receive a special Home Show Entrance Bag! These bags will be filled with small gifts, specials and discount coupons from participating sponsors and vendors! These bags will also come in very handy when you need a place to stow away other information and items you gather!  There will be additional event parking available for attendees across the street at Walla Walla Point Park, both parking lots, as well as at Lowe’s Home Improvement Warehouse. Many thanks to Lowe’s for generously allowing our Home Show attendees to use half of their parking lot for our event!

Builders Versus WA State Over New Energy Code

It’s the Washington State Building Code Council (SBCC) against the Building Industry Association of Washington (BIAW) in fight over new energy code adoption originally set for July 1st. Gov. Gregoire requested a delay of 9 months but builders are guaranteed 3 months.

This issue comes after the SBCC adopted a new code increasing energy efficiency by 18% to 26% in new homes. The SBCC’s actions resulted from Gov. Gregoire’s orders to improve energy code with a 30% reduction in energy use.

Builders argue that the new code would increase new construction from $4,000-$15,000 per unit. During a time when this industry is trying to recover in a down economy the Governor has decided to grant a reprieve and postpone the adoption until the builders have time to recuperate.

Overall, I think we can all agree that energy efficiency is important. Our dependence on oil is embarrassing and the spill in the Gulf of Mexico is a harsh reminder of the affects. As an Energy Star Verifier it would be our company’s best interest for the new code to pass, but we are struggling in this economy like everyone else. Therefore, I think any actions by the SBCC that may increase costs to builders substantially, should be postponed until our economy is doing better.
More info: