tag: business


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NCCER launches Cornerstone of Craftsmanship campaign

If there ever was a time when affirmations were needed by those in the homebuilding business, this is probably it. Which is why there’s a propitious tone to the National Center for Construction Education and Research’s newly announced marketing campaign to “revive the meaning and importance of craftsmanship in the construction industry.”

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Temporary shutdown, layoffs at Cemex plant in California

The Portland Cement Association forecasts a “significantly weak” market for cement over the next two years, in part because public construction, which accounts for about half the cement used nationwide, has slowed along with the rest of the economy.

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A mandate for Shaun Donovan: Sit at the main table

With housing issues so much on everyone’s mind, the housing secretary nominee, Shaun Donovan, became a person of especially intense interest during his confirmation hearing this week before members of the Senate banking committee. The good news is that the attention was positive.

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Beazer says orders continue to plunge

In line with the past several months of housing-market misery, closings and orders for Beazer Homes USA continued their decline during the company’s first quarter, which ended December 31.

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Is there hope for Hope for Homeowners?

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Democrats who control Congress and the Obama transition team both seem to understand that the Hope for Homeowners program has serious flaws. Now what?

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Tarragon files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy

Residential developer and multifamily investor Tarragon Corporation announced that it and some of its subsidiaries have filed a petition to reorganize under Chapter 11 of the bankruptcy code.

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Department of Housing and Mea culpa, Revisited

A profile published Monday by The Wall Street Journal offers a more detailed look at former National Association of Realtors chief economist David Lereah’s post-NAR perspective and his attempts to rebuild his reputation and revive his career.

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Lennar refutes scurrilous allegations

Homebuilder Lennar Corporation on Monday issued a statement denying allegations that its chief operating officer had received a mortgage on his home from the company and saying the company had never treated its joint ventures like a Ponzi scheme.

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Department of Housing and Mea culpa

If you’re loud, obnoxious, and wrong about which team will win the Super Bowl, you lose your wager and look like a chump for a day or so. But if you boldly predicted the housing market wouldn’t take a dive – in the face of mounting evidence that serious trouble was brewing – you have a different sort of ignominy to deal with.

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When opportunity turned to misfortune for Hispanic borrowers

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All too often, lending practices that accompanied well-intentioned initiatives to encourage homeownership among Hispanics erred toward the expedient rather than the prudent.

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Hallelujah! Foreclosures prompt banks, NAHB to consider cramdowns

Citigroup, with the backing of the National Association of Home Builders, has struck a deal with Democratic leaders in the Senate to endorse legislation that would allow judges to set new repayment terms for mortgage holders who wind up in bankruptcy court.

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Pulte pulls out of Long Island

Pulte Homes, which had entered the Long Island, New York, housing market almost seven years ago, recently sold all six of the communities it owned there to a local developer.

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The importance of being right at the right time

When is being right the same as being wrong? When you’re an economist predicting correctly but too early – and in the face of reasoned opposition – that something is seriously out of whack.

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NAR: Pending home sales drop in November

Job losses and other weaknesses throughout the economy finally dented the National Association of Realtors’ Pending Home Sales Index, which had been relatively stable during most of 2008 but declined 4%, to 82.3, in November from 85.7 in October.

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Florida homebuilder wins tickets to inauguration

The Obama team has been soliciting donations to help pay for the inauguration. One of the incentives to donate is the chance to win tickets to the welcoming ceremony, the swearing-in, the parade, and one of the inaugural balls.

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Where are you getting your green building-product information?

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It is our job as competent, trustworthy green builders to do our homework. Builders should look closely at sources of product information. Does it come from a book, an article, a credible Web site? Is it the manufacturer? The source may well be trustworthy, but it couldn't hurt to corroborate their information.

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A guide to cutting energy bills and taxes

It’s one thing for Congress to pass energy-conservation tax incentives for homeowners, it's another to make sure homeowners know about them. That’s where the Tax Incentives Assistance Project comes in.

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Polishing the crystal ball

The forecast for 2009 includes wind, rain, sleet, snow, sun, and moderate, hot, and cold temperatures, with occasional hurricanes and tornadoes. And that’s just the economic forecast.

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Forbes investor team prognosticates on housing market

Forbes.com released a transcript of housing-related comments by five participants in the annual forecast meeting of the Forbes.com Investor Team.

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Greening the life cycle of carpet

Making eco-friendly carpet – with an eye to how the material will be handled once the user is ready to replace it – is full of challenges, and carpet often doesn’t rank high on the list of green floor coverings. But that doesn’t mean the companies that make carpeting aren’t striving for a greener product.

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