Home Innovation Insights

Insider insights on what's going on in the home building industry.

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August 9, 2022

Latest Insights into New Home & Replacement Markets for Windows & Doors

Earlier this summer, I was invited to deliver the closing presentation of the WDMA 2022 Annual Technical and Manufacturing Conference. I shared 10-year market trends on window and door purchases in new and remodeled U.S. homes and insights into purchasers. As I have for more than 20 years, I sourced my data from Home Innovation’s annual trusted and industry-leading Builder and Consumer Practices Reports.

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Building Products, Marketing, Building Practices, Homebuyer Preferences, Data and Trends

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July 29, 2022

#WillItCorrode: Tools of the Trade: Add Testing to Your Product Durability Toolkit

This year, the Home Innovation lab team is on a mission to test some everyday gadgets in our salt spray chamber to find out #willitcorrode. Home Innovation's full range of corrosion testing helps building product manufacturers ensure the performance of metals and coatings. Typically, we test products such as nails, screws, anchor bolts, bollards, stair nosing, gutter clips, ladders, cable, baluster, hand railing, support systems for curtain walls, etc. But we have decided to mix it up a little with this experiment to emphasize the practical nature of this type of testing. Check out the results of our latest experiment with a screwdriver.

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Product Testing, Building Products, Building Codes, Building Practices

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July 21, 2022

Supply Chain, Labor Markets Creating Opportunities for Alternative Building Materials

Labor and supply chain issues have shaped the industry in recent years, particularly since the COVID pandemic. The net result has been longer construction cycle times, rising construction costs, and simply a much more difficult environment for building and remodeling homes. Our recent 2022 Builder Practices Survey sheds more light on how builder choices of home features, products, and materials has changed in response to these market conditions.

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Building Products, Marketing, Building Practices, Homebuyer Preferences, Data and Trends

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July 1, 2022

#WillItCorrode: Red vs. White Rust

This year, the Home Innovation lab team is on a mission to test some everyday gadgets in our salt spray chamber to find out #willitcorrode. Home Innovation's full range of corrosion testing helps building product manufacturers ensure the performance of metals and coatings. Typically, we test products such as nails, screws, anchor bolts, bollards, stair nosing, gutter clips, ladders, cable, baluster, hand railing, support systems for curtain walls, etc. But we have decided to mix it up a little with this experiment to emphasize the practical nature of this type of testing. Check out the results of our latest experiment with a diecast metal toy truck.

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Product Testing, Building Products, Building Codes, Building Practices

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June 16, 2022

Let’s Go to The Tape: Market Opportunities Presentation

Earlier this spring, I was asked to be a guest speaker at the Pressure Sensitive Tape Council’s Tape Week conference in Buena Vista, Fla. I provided the audience with an in-depth review of six key market opportunities for pressure-sensitive tapes and adhesives in residential construction, referencing our most recent Builder and Consumer Practices data trends and key drivers and market volumes for the six product categories. Below is a brief recap of the presentation takeaways:

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Building Products, Marketing, Building Practices, Homebuyer Preferences, Data and Trends

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June 3, 2022

#WillItCorrode: Appropriate Material Selection

This year, the Home Innovation lab team is on a mission to test some everyday gadgets in our salt spray chamber to find out #willitcorrode. Home Innovation's full range of corrosion testing helps building product manufacturers ensure the performance of metals and coatings. Typically, we test products such as nails, screws, anchor bolts, bollards, stair nosing, gutter clips, ladders, cable, baluster, hand railing, support systems for curtain walls, etc. But we have decided to mix it up a little with this experiment to emphasize the practical nature of this type of testing. Check out the results of our latest experiment with a "durable" thermal coffee mug.

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Product Testing, Building Products, Building Codes, Building Practices

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May 20, 2022

Market Reflections: Home Kitchen Remodeling in 2021

Home Innovation recently published our 2022 Consumer Practices Reports, based on the latest survey of households on home improvements and repairs in 2021. Kitchen remodeling is still hot – maybe even a bit “overheated” – and changes in material choice trends have been very fast-paced. Quartz continues to gain at the expense of the once-dominant Granite for Countertops; both came in at nearly equal shares (around 25%) of kitchen remodels. Marble also gained, but Laminate and Acrylic Solid Surface continued to lose their luster in the eyes of homeowners.  Kitchen Cabinet trends continue as they have been — painted cabinets with flat-panel-in-frame designs are the most popular in home kitchen remodels at 28% of all cabinets installed; finally surpassing the former #1 position holder, cabinets with raised panel doors and wood finish.

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Building Products, Marketing, Building Practices, Homebuyer Preferences, Data and Trends

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May 13, 2022

#WillItCorrode: Digging into Types of Corrosion

This year, the Home Innovation lab team is on a mission to test some everyday gadgets in our salt spray chamber to find out #willitcorrode. Home Innovation's full range of corrosion testing helps building product manufacturers ensure the performance of metals and coatings. Typically, we test products such as nails, screws, anchor bolts, bollards, stair nosing, gutter clips, ladders, cable, baluster, hand railing, support systems for curtain walls, etc. But we have decided to mix it up a little with this experiment to emphasize the practical nature of this type of testing. Check out the results of our latest experiment with a heavy duty carbon steel garden hand shovel.

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Product Testing, Building Products, Building Codes, Building Practices

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May 12, 2022

2022 Consumer Practices Reports Available

The results of Home Innovation’s 2022 Consumer Practices Survey (CPS) on home remodeling are in and analyzed! The top overall finding is that U.S. and Canadian home remodeling purchases are still very strong, two years into the pandemic. The DIY purchaser segment is back to near-historical levels after a spike in 2020, and the outdoor living category is still blazing hot.

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Building Products, Marketing, Building Practices, Homebuyer Preferences, Data and Trends

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May 6, 2022

Why is it Important the NGBS is Part of the I-Codes?

The National Green Building Standard (NGBS) ICC-700 was developed as a collaboration between ICC and NAHB to create a rating system for homes and multifamily buildings that would be used as voluntary, above-code program. Two aspects of the NGBS were innovative and helped propel NGBS Green to become the most widely used green standard for residentially-used buildings in the United States. First, the NGBS is written in code language, so that everyone on a project team -- architects, specifiers, general contractors, MEP engineers, subs, insulation crews, HVAC installers – can understand it because they all know and understand the building code. Second, the NGBS is designed for a specific type of building occupancy, not type of construction -- it's designed for the buildings where we live. Many experts scoffed at this idea when the NGBS was being developed, but it has come to serve the specific needs of multifamily builders, which differ vastly from commercial builders and developers, much more comprehensively than any green building program that came before it. Find out more about how the NGBS both aligns with and adds value to the building codes.

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Green Building, Building Practices, Energy Performance, Marketing, Homebuyer Preferences, Building Codes

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April 22, 2022

Earth Day Reflections: Looking Back on 2021

Today, on Earth Day 2022, everyone is taking rightful stock of the world around them and the impact they have on it. For NGBS Green, that’s not just something we do one day a year – it’s our full-time mission and purpose. But, we figured today was a great opportunity to take a look back at all the NGBS Green certification program did in 2021 to help move the needle further toward creating a better, more sustainable, healthier, and more fulfilling built environment for the places where we all live, both behind the scenes and in the spotlight.

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Green Building, Building Practices, Energy Performance, Marketing, Homebuyer Preferences

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April 5, 2022

#WillItCorrode: Key Causes For Corrosion

This year, the Home Innovation lab team is on a mission to test some everyday gadgets in our salt spray chamber to find out #willitcorrode. Home Innovation's full range of corrosion testing helps building product manufacturers ensure the performance of metals and coatings. Typically, we test products such as nails, screws, anchor bolts, bollards, stair nosing, gutter clips, ladders, cable, baluster, hand railing, support systems for curtain walls, etc. But we have decided to mix it up a little with this experiment to emphasize the practical nature of this type of testing. Check out the results of our latest experiment with a standard house key.

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Product Testing, Building Products, Building Codes, Building Practices

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April 4, 2022

Current Market Trends & New Opps Revealed for Plastics In New Construction and Remodeling

On March 1st, I was pleased to speak at the opening session of AMI’s 2022 PVC Formulation Conference in Cleveland. I provided an overview of product trends in new homes and remodeling from 2011 to 2020, tracking market shares of PVC and other plastics products. I concluded with a discussion of how the past two tumultuous years are now resulting in opportunities for plastics. I covered the product categories where PVC is already a big player in the market, and those where they could become one, including flooring, piping, siding, decking, fences, and others. 

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Building Products, Marketing, Building Practices, Homebuyer Preferences, Data and Trends

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March 30, 2022

The SEC Ups the Ante: Greenwashing Riskier Than Ever

New SEC rules will require public companies to report on the climate impacts of their business. The SEC proposal requires companies to disclose climate-related risks – such as how climate might impact their business, operations, or financial condition – in their statements and corporate reports. Companies will also be required to disclose their greenhouse gas emissions, per the new rules. For our NGBS Green certification clients, the proposed SEC rule provides additional validation of your decision to design, build, and own high-performing real property assets, and seek a third-party certification of their conformance to back-up your environmental claims. The SEC rule aligns closely with the value of third-party certification. The NGBS Green mark signifies to investors, consumers, government staff, and other stakeholders that a building’s environmental claims are independently verified.

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Green Building, Building Practices, Energy Performance, Marketing, Homebuyer Preferences

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March 24, 2022

Housing Innovation: It’s What We’re All About

In late February, I participated in an interview/discussion during the Building Products Strategy Summit held by John Burns Real Estate Consulting. The subject was innovation in the U.S. housing construction market. When I joined Home Innovation Research Labs nearly 30 years ago, my initial assignment was to support the Advanced Housing Technology Program (AHTP) – a deep exploration of barriers to innovation in home construction, to evaluate and catalog more than a thousand beneficial new home technologies. The AHTP program was initiated to answer concerns that innovation in housing lags other industries. The insights uncovered through that program, along with other diffusion-of-innovation research I’ve been involved in, serves as the foundation for Home Innovation’s current marketing research practice.

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Building Products, Marketing, Building Practices, Homebuyer Preferences, Data and Trends

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March 14, 2022

COVID Changes - Temp or Perm? Part 2

In taking another look at our recent survey of builders regarding the permanence of 22 business and new home changes adopted during the pandemic, we found that most practices – aside from the strictly virus-spread-mitigating ones – will be retained by more than half of builders who responded to the survey. These include practices such as utilizing a greatly-expanded network of building product suppliers, and putting more emphasis on outdoor living space, healthier indoor air quality, and home layout changes that provide space for remote work and schooling. See where there were differences in what will stay and what will go based on size of builder, as well as local vs. regional vs. national differences.

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Building Products, Marketing, Building Practices, Homebuyer Preferences, Data and Trends

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March 4, 2022

#WillItCorrode: Stick A Fork in It

This year, the Home Innovation lab team is on a mission to test some everyday gadgets in our salt spray chamber to find out #willitcorrode. Home Innovation's full range of corrosion testing helps building product manufacturers ensure the performance of metals and coatings. Typically, we test products such as nails, screws, anchor bolts, bollards, stair nosing, gutter clips, ladders, cable, baluster, hand railing, support systems for curtain walls, etc. But we have decided to mix it up a little with this experiment to emphasize the practical nature of this type of testing. Check out the results of our first month's experiment with an 18-0 stainless steel fork.

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Product Testing, Building Products, Building Codes, Building Practices

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February 16, 2022

Got The Stuff to be an NGBS Green PRO? PROve it!

Building professionals who want to learn more about a green building certification for homes, apartments, and mixed-use buildings that is affordable, credible, and provides tangible value, or just want to promote their existing NGBS Green expertise, now have a new way to do it. Home Innovation Research Labs' new training and professional designation, NGBS Green PRO, explains how the National Green Building Standard ICC-700 (NGBS) can help you build or remodel green, high-performing buildings and tout your knowledge to prospective clients. The program consists of four training modules, all AIA and ICC approved so you can earn continuing education credits. After completing all the modules and passing the tests you can earn the NGBS Green PRO professional designation.

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Green Building, Building Practices, Energy Performance, Marketing, Homebuyer Preferences

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January 25, 2022

Quick QAP Recap: Fall-Winter 2021

Home Innovation actively advocates for third-party certified, green, affordable housing by providing input for state Qualified Allocation Plan (QAPs). QAPs specify a state agency’s allocation of federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC). Most QAPs include criteria for energy efficiency and green building, and nearly 30 states specify green building certification as a requirement or point-based incentive. When third-party green certification is included within a QAP, NGBS Green Certification is typically recognized alongside other credible national green building programs. NGBS Green certification is affordable to implement, making it ideally suited for affordable housing.

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Building Codes, Building Practices, Energy Performance, Green Building, Marketing, Affordable Homes