BUILDING TODAY

 for a better tomorrow.

News and Updates

  • 26 Aug 2019 3:21 PM | Rick Cochran (Administrator)

    The home show committee of the Central Susquehanna Builders Association donated $700 toward programs benefiting the Endorsed Trade Program.

    Member Dean Hilliard received a split mini HVAC system and offered it as a prize raffle item for the March 2019 CSBA Home Show. Dean offered his installation services as well.

    Students from the Columbia-Montour Area Vocational Technical School sold tickets to attendees during the show and all proceeds were earmarked for the Endorsed Trade Program.

    Steve Brown, CSBA 2nd Vice President, presented the check to PAB President Maria Coutts at the PBA Summer Board Meeting. The Central Susquehanna BA has requested that the funds be used to provide materials and recognition for students involved in workforce development programs.

    PBA and the Workforce Development Committee would like to thank the members of the Central Susquehanna Builders Association for their dedication to the future of our workforce.

  • 20 Aug 2019 1:48 PM | Rick Cochran (Administrator)

    So did you just pull into the driveway after dropping your youngest off at college? Or maybe you spent the summer helping the last holdout move into their own place. The bottom line is that now you fit into the special club called the “empty nesters”. Yes, the first couple of weeks may be filled with a few tears and lots of memories, but then the fun starts – THE PLACE IS FINALLY ALL YOURS!

    All the home shows on television seem to focus on couples who are looking for special areas in their homes for their particular interests. Most real parents have probably yelled at the screen wondering who ever had time for their own interests. Well now is your time, so we’ve come up with a few ideas of what you can do with Junior’s room. Sure you might want to include a sofa bed or air mattress in the house for him – but don’t make it look too permanent!

    Library – Are you a book lover but currently the only place you have to store them is as a make-shift bedside table? Think of the possibilities of having bookshelves installed in a dedicated room. Add a big comfortable chair, a side table, and maybe even a sound system and you have the makings of your own library to enjoy.

    Meditation Room – Now that there is actually some quiet in the house, a meditation room might be a good idea. Make it clutter-free with soothing colors and maybe some big pillows or comfortable blankets because after all, naps count as meditating too, right?

    A Closet to Die For – For years you have been shoving your clothes into what seems like a smaller and smaller space. Suddenly there are empty closets in other rooms (well, once you convince the previous occupant to clear them out). You could look beyond the closets and make the entire room a walk-in closet. Install a closet system, add a dresser or two and finally be able to keep your things organized and neat.

    Exercise Room – How many treadmills currently do double duty as a clothes hanger? Past space limitations have resulting in exercise gear relegated to the corner of the master bedroom. Clear out that new empty room and you’ve got all kinds of room to do your workouts. Install a wall mounted television and add some floor mats and you will soon be on the path for a healthier you.

    Man Cave/Indoor She Shed – Yes, we have all seen the commercial where Sheryl’s She-Shed is in flames. But why not leave the shed for what it was meant for – storing the mower. An empty room can easily be taken over and used for displaying sports memorabilia, doing crafts, listening to music, or even being transformed into a luxury bath for your own in-home spa.

    Home Office – Let’s get that laptop and stack of bills off the kitchen counter. That room is screaming to be your own home office. You might want to even start a new business based on your hobbies (now that you have time for them!). Enjoy the opportunity to be able to shut the door on distractions.

    OK – maybe you want to look beyond the empty room.

    As empty nesters you can make all kinds of changes to your home. Remember it’s your space and you can do whatever you want. Other ideas include investing in some finer furniture – you know, maybe you can finally get a white sofa now that no one is sprawled on it eating pizza.

    This may be the time to redo your floors or even freshen up the outside areas. Paint the walls the colors you’ve always wanted to or even remodel the place for resale in the future.

    No matter what you decide, it’s important to realize that life goes on and you’ve reached a new chapter. Make the most of it and take some time – and space – for yourself.

    You’ve earned it.

  • 19 Aug 2019 11:36 AM | Rick Cochran (Administrator)

    With the start of the new school year, the York Builders Association is expanding their WorkforceNOW initiative with some new and exciting marketing pieces. WorkforceNOW was designed specifically to address the shortage of skilled labor in the industry.

    The YBA is developing a series of blogs and videos to help the program gain traction and promote awareness of the variety of career paths available in the local market.

    The first ever Construction Career Days event took place in April, with a second one planned for the upcoming school year. The event was a partnership with several local high schools and building industry companies where students and employers got the opportunity to connect.

    We all have a responsibility to empower and encourage the future workforce. Check out some of the promotional ideas that are making a difference in York County – and see how you can use them for inspiration in your local area.

    WorkforceNOW Launch

    Construction Career Days Video

    WorkforceNOW Blog – Damon’s Story

  • 09 Aug 2019 10:04 AM | Rick Cochran (Administrator)

    NAHB’s Building Systems Housing Summit is returning to Pennsylvania October 6-8. The Summit, the industry’s premier conference dedicated to off-site construction, is an excellent opportunity to network with leaders in modular, panelized, log, and other innovative residential building systems.

    Through focused education sessions, led by industry experts, attendees can immediately put key takeaways into practice to strategically build their businesses. The Summit is a fantastic way to forge valuable connections to find solutions to your biggest challenges and position your business for continued growth.  

    Lock in your savings now and join us in Pittsburgh in October. Register by 5:00 p.m. ET, Friday, August 16 to save $85 on your Summit registration.

    More Information

  • 06 Aug 2019 10:27 AM | Rick Cochran (Administrator)

    PBA recently launched a major new fundraising program. The Keystone Club (formerly Committee of 75) is designed to raise personal contributions from members. These funds are used to target Pennsylvania’s leaders on issues vital to the home building industry.

    Keystone Club members include those who have contributed $500 or more to PaCAH (Pennsylvania Committee for Affordable Housing). Checks should be made payable to “PaCAH” and include a Keystone Club note on the memo line. Members of the Keystone Club who pledge each year, will receive a pin and entry into that year’s PaCAH admission.

    As of the PBA Summer Board Meeting, the following individuals were designated as “Founding Members” of the Keystone Club.

    Kevin Coutts (Wayne/Pike)

    Maria Coutts (Wayne/Pike)

    Dean Hilliard (Central Susquehanna)

    Cindy Cepko (Wayne/Pike)

    Jill Allan (BAMP)

    Jim Rumbaugh (BAMP)

    Several more have pledged their commitment and will be joining the Club.

    If you wish to be included as a “Founding Member” of the Keystone Club, please contact Jill Pento at jpento@pabuilders.org or 717- 730-4380, ext. 3028 on or before September 1.

  • 05 Aug 2019 11:59 AM | Rick Cochran (Administrator)

    Protecting your family. That’s the goal of homeowners everywhere. But with the variety of security systems on the market today, what is the right choice for you?

    Technology makes today’s choices in security systems seem like something George Jetson might install in his space-aged home. But the reality is that now you can actually control your home from the palm of your hand even if you are across the country. We’ve come a long way from leaving a light on and hoping the dog will bark.

    Home security systems vary from those that notify local authorities when a window or door in your home has been breached to those that can alert you and a monitoring service of someone at your door through video on your smartphone. They can even notify you of an unseen danger that could be lurking in your home.

    At the very basic level is a self-monitoring system where the homeowner is responsible to notify emergency personnel of a security breach. However for peace of mind, you might want to consider a more advanced system. The advantages of these more advanced options include safety, convenience, and even more cash in your pocket.

    Protecting Loved Ones – This is the most significant reason to invest in a security system. The comfort of knowing your family is safe is paramount.

    Protecting Your Home and Valuables – Did you know that 60 percent of home invaders are deterred when they know your home is protected by a security system? Even those that try are likely to be scared off by the sound of an alarm.

    Discovering Underlying Dangers – A number of security systems can detect hazards that may be invading your home – smoke, carbon monoxide, fire – even when you are not at home.

    Convenience – Imagine you are out later than you had planned. With a modern security system you can easily turn on lights in your home (and maybe even the television for noise) and adjust the thermostat through your smartphone to give yourself an additional sense of security.

    Discounts – Many insurance companies offer discounts to homeowners who install security systems in their homes. So you can keep your family and valuable safe and still save money while doing it!

    Consider your particular needs. Look at where you live, consider past experiences, and think about your lifestyle. Which security system is right for you? Be sure to talk to a qualified professional and check out the selection of products on the market.

    A security system provides that extra comfort for you – and most importantly – for your family.

  • 30 Jul 2019 11:18 AM | Rick Cochran (Administrator)

    Safety and PBA go hand-in-hand. Builder Services Inc. (BSI) works closely with McConkey Insurance and Benefits to offer members competitively-priced Workers' Compensation coverage.

    Read about some great ideas for keeping your worksite safe and contact Erica Grimm (info@pbaworkcomp.com or 717-505-3144) for more information on how you can benefit from this program.


  • 30 Jul 2019 9:20 AM | Rick Cochran (Administrator)


    PBA members from across the state gathered in State College this past weekend for the Summer Board Meeting. Members from more than two dozen local associations met to review progress, set agendas for future projects, and nominate officers for 2020. The event also provided members with the opportunity to network with others in the home building industry.

    Prior to the actual Board Meeting, attendees participated in a variety of committee meetings including the PA Housing Research Center, Non-Dues Task Force, Membership, Communications, Workers Compensation, Workforce Training and Development, Professional Women in Building (PWB), and the Board of Directors meeting for Builders Services, Inc. (BSI).

    The Governmental Affairs Committee Meeting, chaired by Jim Rumbaugh of The Meritage Group (Builders Association of Metropolitan Pittsburgh), drew the largest number of attendees. PBA members were updated on the success of Act 53 which takes builders and developers off the hook for major tax liabilities attributable to Contributions in Aid of Construction (or “CIAC.”) Act 53 provides significant savings for developers, homebuilders, and homebuyers. This victory is a major milestone in the work that the Governmental Affairs Committee is doing on behalf of the building industry in Pennsylvania. The committee also provided details on other issues facing the industry as well as upcoming initiatives. 

    Governmental Affairs leadership also announced the establishment of the Keystone Club recognizing donors to the Pennsylvania Committee for Affordable Housing (PaCAH). Donations of $500 or more grant entry into the Club. Act now to be recognized as a founding members. For more information on how you can be a part of the Keystone Club, please contact Jill Pento at jpento@pabuilders.org

    Elizabeth Hensil, of Finish Line Strategies, addressed lunchtime guests about the importance of a grassroots campaign in advance of a planned Legislative Day at the Capital set for September 23.

    Those attendees wanting to learn more about how social media can benefit their businesses, took part in a seminar titled Getting Savvy With Social Media led by Deb Kozlovac of Alliance Business Technologies. 

     

    After a day of back-to-back meetings, a large number of members and guests took part in a special fundraising event for PaCAH at the nearby home of Betsy Dupuis. The theme of the evening was a summer picnic complete with delicious grilled delicacies, wine flights, a corn hole competition, and even a very popular dunk tank featuring Vice President Jon Sukonik, Past President Andrew Kaye, GA Committee Chair Jim Rumbaugh, and BA of Metro Pittsburgh Executive Officer Jim Eichenlaub. 

    President Maria Coutts convened Saturday morning’s Board Meeting where directors from across the state conducted the business of PBA. 

    Immediate Past President Kert Sloan announced the nominations for officers for 2020. Jon Sukonik of HBA of Bucks & Montgomery Counties was chosen as the nominee for President along with Cindy Cepko, Wayne-Pike BIA, as Vice President; Cathy Sloan, HBA of Berks County, as Secretary; Shawn Prohaska, HBA of NEPA, as Associate Vice President. The Treasurer nominee will be announced in the fall. Additional nominees included NAHB Area Three Vice President, Andrew Kaye, HBA of Bucks & Montgomery Counties; Builder State Director to NAHB, Kevin Coutts, Wayne-Pike BIA; Associate State Director to NAHB, Amy Martino, BA of Metropolitan Pittsburgh; and NAHB State Representative, Kert Sloan, HBA of Berks County.

    Special guest Alicia Huey, candidate for the 2020 NAHB Third Vice Chair addressed the board and asked for their support at the national level. Huey, from Birmingham, Alabama, has played a large role in the home building industry over the years at the local, state, and national levels. Secretary Cindy Cepko followed up with a resolution on behalf of PBA which pledges Pennsylvania’s endorsement on behalf of Alicia Huey’s campaign.

    President Coutts rounded out the Board Meeting with an overview of the progress of the PBA Strategic Plan initiatives and opened the floor to new business and discussion.

    Members left the summer gathering with a renewed sense of direction and encouragement from the  work that is being completed to further support the  industry.   

    All PBA members are encouraged to attend the Fall PBA Board Meeting set for October 31-November 2 at the Harrisburg Hilton located in Harrisburg. Please watch for more details in the coming months.


     

  • 23 Jul 2019 2:54 PM | Rick Cochran (Administrator)

    After a great first year, the Build My Future event will take place again on Thursday, October 17 at the Pennsylvania School of Technology in Williamsport. Build My Future will run from 9:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m.

    The program is for secondary students to explore the breadth of career opportunities available in the construction and design industry. It’s a great day to showcase your craft, create energy, and connect with the future of the construction industry.

    Approximately 700 secondary students attended last year and the goal is to top 1,000 this year.

    Registration is now open to become an exhibitor – there is indoor AND outdoor space available. All exhibitors are encouraged to have their exhibit be interactive and engaging.

    We hope you will consider being an exhibitor or a sponsor. The links below provide additional details. It is strongly encouraged that exhibits be interactive and engaging. Indoor or outdoor space is available. The day begins at 9 am and concludes at 2 pm. 

    Levon Whitmyer, an instructor at Penn Tech, will be attending the PBA Board Meeting this week. If you have any additional questions, please spend some time with Levon either during the Workforce Training and Education meeting or throughout the weekend.

    Build My Future Exhibitor Registration Form

    Build My Future Sponsorship Registration Form

    Build My Future Exhibitor Details

    Build My Future Sponsorship Benefits

  • 16 Jul 2019 10:43 AM | Rick Cochran (Administrator)

    As the old song goes, “We’re having a heat wave, a tropical heat wave.”

    Well it’s okay to sing and dance, but when the temperature soars your home can really be an energy trap, sucking money right out of your wallet. But if you just take advantage of a few simple tips, you can stay comfortable without emptying your bank account.

    The first thing everyone does when the weather forecasters start talking about 90-something-degree days is to run to the thermostat. However you really should set it as high as you are comfortable – the smaller the difference is between in inside and outside temperature, the lower your energy bill. Most experts say you should keep the temperature inside set to 78 degrees. Every degree lower than that will result in 3 to 5 percent more energy being used.

    That being said, a programmable “smart” thermostat unit is truly a life-saver during extreme heat (and cold). They can be set according to your schedule. Why cool an entire home when no one is there? The smart versions enable you to control the temperature with your phone even when you are not at home.

    Keeping the blinds and curtains closed during the day will also help keep the interior in check. If you have a ceiling fan, using that can help make you feel cooler without raising the temperatures. Those with a whole-house fan should open the windows and run the unit in the early morning and at night to pull cool air into the house.

    Homeowners should also avoid using high energy appliances during peak hours. That means don’t run the oven, dishwasher, washer, or dryer between the hours of 9:00 am and 9:00 pm. Not only will it save you energy, but it will also help keep the overall house cooler. Besides who want to cook a six-course Thanksgiving dinner when it’s easier to cook something on the grill (or better yet, just have ice cream!).

    It goes without saying that a well-maintained HVAC system can save you a lot of money. Be sure to practice a routine of replacing filters regularly. A dirty filter makes the system work even harder to push out cold air. A general rule of thumb is to change the filter every 90 days or so. If you have pets or allergies, you might want to move that timeline up a bit.

    Homeowners should have their HVAC systems checked by a professional on a regular basis. Do these hardworking people a favor and don’t wait to call them for a routine service check when you realize that it will be a scorcher in a few hours. Call before the season starts or be prepared to wait until they can fit you into the schedule. (The same applies for the winter months.)

    Quality windows and doors make a huge difference in keep homes cool (and warm). While it is highly unlikely that you can do anything about it this week, it may be time to start thinking of investing these energy-saving products for future seasons. You’ll notice the difference when the heat comes and also when the electric bill shows up.

    There’s no avoiding the heat in Pennsylvania during the summer. But there are ways to manage it without spending a fortune to stay comfortable in your home.

    So pour yourself another cold glass of lemonade and push the thermostat up another degree or two. As that television show reminds us “Winter is coming.”



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