Top A/V Trends in Homes Across the U.S.

A/V home trendsToday’s home is both wired and networked, not only for convenience and security, but for entertainment, too, as A/V home trends increasingly demonstrate. Contractors who perform home entertainment or automation installations can verify that the market is expanding as the home becomes the entertainment hub of people’s lives. For both the consumer and the contractor tracking the latest A/V home trends, here are some of the directions the industry is heading: Read More »

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Midsize Construction Firms Expecting More Growth and Business in Coming Year

The outlook for midsize construction firms in 2015 is optimistic, with almost half believing that the construction sector will expand in the coming year.

construction firm worker In a survey conducted by GE Capital, 47 percent of survey respondents reported that business will be brighter for midsize construction firms in 2015, with growth expected throughout the year.

The survey questioned a total of 59 firms with an average number of 662 employees. Revenue of the firms surveyed averaged nearly $144 million.

The construction firms surveyed expressed high confidence in the growth of the U.S. and local markets, but they weren’t as certain of increases in the global market.

Some 70 percent of the construction companies in the survey indicated that their overall financial picture had improved as of September 2014. This number represents a positive change from March 2014, when 60 percent of the firms had seen better financial results.

In addition to improved revenue, 50 percent of the firms responding to the survey reported they were hiring more people to meet demand.

Survey respondents noted that growth is expected in several specific categories, including the energy sector and office and residential construction. Spending on public works projects, including both new construction and renovation, was seen as the greatest potential area of appreciable growth for midsize construction firms.

Capital expenditures were up for 41 percent of the respondents. They also reported significant areas that could affect growth and profitability in the next year, including:

  • Healthcare costs: Rising costs of healthcare and insurance could significantly cut into many midsize companies’ profits.
  • Uncertainty in government spending: The constant fiscal battles in government will make it difficult to forecast revenue or anticipate government contracts.

The most recent and reliable information on building permits and construction industry trends can be found in Construction Monitor‘s weekly insightful reports, including helpful info for midsize construction firms.

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Spending on Construction Across U.S. Unexpectedly Down in August

Spending on Construction Across U.S downSummer may be a traditionally busy time in the construction industry, but this August turned disappointing for many building professionals. Based in part of positive trends in U.S. construction spending, economists polled by Reuters had predicted a 0.5 percent spending increase for August. Considering July saw a spending uptick of 1.2 percent, the forecast seemed reasonably conservative. Read More »

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Growth in Institutional Construction Detected for the First Time in 6 Years

For the first time since 2008, the institutional construction sector is showing signs of growth. Institutional construction increased a modest 4 percent in 2014, in contrast to several years of either stagnation or declines, beginning in 2009.

institutional construction The uptick in the institutional sector was reported in the 2015 Dodge Construction Outlook, produced by Dodge Data & Analytics.

Growth in this sector is expected to continue into 2015, with a 9 percent increase expected in construction starts for institutional projects, including educational facilities.

The institutional construction sector includes schools, universities, healthcare centers, and other facilities that serve the public.

The previous lowered performance of this area of construction was caused by dependence on public funding for projects. During the eight-year period since 2008, such funding had been limited.

The Dodge Construction Outlook report indicates that increases are occurring in the construction of K-12 schools, fueled by the recent passage of several school construction bond measures.

Construction on university campuses is also set to increase as returns on investment by college endowments improve.

Healthcare facility construction has been stalled over the past few years due to volatility in the industry caused by healthcare reform. However, as the population ages and needs more long-term care, and as existing healthcare facilities deteriorate and require replacement, growth in healthcare construction is expected to increase.

For example, the Dodge report noted an anticipated healthcare construction growth rate of 6 percent in 2015.

The report also foresees considerable growth in entertainment and recreational facilities, possibly reaching a high of 10 percent.

Construction industry managers, contractors and business owners can rely on Construction Monitor for the most recent and accurate information on industry developments and trends, including institutional construction.

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Preventing Construction Site Theft Is a Constant Concern

construction theftA well-stocked construction site is a major advantage for your crews and site managers. Unfortunately, a this kind of site can also be a tempting target for thieves, both inside and outside your organization. Here are some ways of preventing construction site theft that can be effective at reducing losses at all levels. Read More »

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Home Remodeling Market Remains Busy as U.S. Homeowners Continue Making Improvements

home remodelingWhen the economy is sluggish, home remodeling often falls by the wayside in favor of basic maintenance. With the general economy picking up these days, however, there’s been a promising and steady increase in spending on remodeling. Read More »

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Construction Begins on High-End Apartments in Tempe

high end apartments in Tempe The Tempe construction scene has a new entrant you’ll want to keep an eye on if residential construction is an interest of yours. In early October, the boutique real estate developer OliverMcMillan broke ground on one of the most recent upscale residential developments in Tempe. Read More »

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Cement Shortage Impacts Minneapolis Construction

cement shortageAfter several years of a construction boom, Minneapolis construction projects are being slowed by a cement shortage. Besides increased building across commercial and residential construction sectors, the situation has been exacerbated by the spring floods on the Minnesota and Mississippi in 2014, the construction of the St. Croix River Bridge and the Vikings’ stadium in Minneapolis. Read More »

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Single-Family Home Construction Projected to Increase in 2015

single-family home constructionAfter the longest and most severe housing recession in history, experts look for a solid single-family home construction rebound in 2015. Consistent job growth, increased demand from household formation and low interest rates all support the expected increase in demand for new detached homes.  Read More »

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New Apple Headquarters Aiming to Be Greenest Building on Earth

new apple headquartersIn line with Apple’s corporate philosophy of creating the smallest environmental footprint possible, their new Apple headquarters in Cupertino, California, is being constructed to be a net-zero facility. This term refers to a building that produces its own renewable energy onsite. In addition, Apple strives to meet the highest Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standard at the platinum level.  Read More »

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