November 10, 2016

Make Home Building Great Again

(Disclaimer: this is an opinion piece based solely on my opinion.)

A new president always brings a fresh start, a new beginning, but what we all had to go through to get to this fresh start was nothing short of miraculous. I hope our nation can fully heal but I realize that we are as divided a nation as we have ever been. So many bad actors in this national play.Trump with his shoot first personality (I can relate) and no filter persona on one side. On the other, Clinton with her sense of "above it all" and carelessness (yes, I am going there).

It is truly amazing that we fought with each other so hard over these two individuals. 
We did, however, and it's time to move forward and not dwell on the "woulda, shoulda, coulda" 20/20 hindsight but look clearly into what's important to me; home building's future. 

I would like to put the past several months behind me as it pertains to Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton as fast as humanly possible and get back to the business of our livelihoods; home building. We can clearly see what we need for home building to truly rebound and become great again and it's starts now. Our new beginning for home building starts with a president that will actually care about the building industry. President-elect Trump is a builder. Not in the traditional sense that we know. But make no mistake, he has home building in his blood. His dad was a member of NAHB at one time so I will make the claim that home building is in Donald Trump's blood.

Here's what Mr. Trump, in my opinion, needs to do to jump start the economy and with it, home building.
  1. Less government regulations. Regs are adding over 25% to the cost of home building; ridiculous. Listen to NAHB's Advocacy team about which regs choke any type of momentum.
  2. Reign in the EPA because this agency has harmed our members so many times over the past several years and their land grab terror has to end. House Speaker Ryan already fired the first salvo at Waters of the U.S.
  3. Eliminate the Affordable Healthcare Act so businesses can start growing their companies and hire! This also will give the vast majority of Americans more income just by their deductibles lowering. The geniuses behind this act should be ashamed of themselves.
  4. Take the noose off the necks of builders with lending institutions. Giving up first born children and three quarts of blood is not enough. Banks squeeze the breath out of builders and this has to come to an end. Projects that makes sense, in a marketable area, price point fits with the surrounding neighborhoods and a builder who does have substantial skin in the game? Lend.
  5. Re-energize our economy and help the millennials be able to own homes. Get them out of the basements of their parents homes, into a healthy job market and buying a home. Like we all did before them. We survived, they will too.
  6. Balance the mortgage lending system.  Who in their right mind did not think that no money down, no income verification, as well as multiple (as in more than one home) dwellings would end well for any of us? We paid the price. Common sense should prevail but no, we are faced with the pendulum swinging towards, and staying, on the other end of fairness.
  7. Encourage home ownership! Home ownership is at its lowest rate since World War Two and the past several years have been the main culprit. Why? See above 1-6

If you supported Clinton, I am truly sorry for your loss. But understand that Clinton would have kept our members treading water and I don't think they could have lasted another four years
Like I said, publicly, four years ago, President Obama is my president and I will support him until he stops helping my industry. One year in and we all knew we were SCREWED and my support ended. Now, our fresh start, our ne beginning, with an actual builder as president. I can feel the oppressiveness of government bureaucracy dissipating like a hot August day's humidity and the fresh cool breezes flowing. 

That's it, that's all I have to write on this matter. I am turning the page and forging ahead and I will regard the last eight years as my earthbound time in home building purgatory. 

On another note, that ties in nicely: you most likely saw Donald Trump's address to NAHB's Board of Directors this past August 2016. He spoke to our board and key HBA staff from across our country. What he said resonated with me. I leave it to you to see if his speech makes you, a building industry professional, feel just a little bit better about your future.

submitted by Michael Kurpiel, CGA, CGP

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