Sunday, December 30, 2012

2012 the year in review for Village Builders Inc.


2012 the year in review for Village Builders Inc.

It has been an interesting year for Village builders Inc in 2012.
We enjoyed another good year in a construction economy that has seen the industry slow down overall in the province of Ontario. The effect has not been felt in the Collingwood/Blue Mountain area until this year.

Trends

The trend for houses seems to be that they are getting more expense per square foot. Houses are becoming more complicated than they ever have before. Houses are being loaded with all the bells and whistles, every feature imaginable is added that will make life a little easier. Natural gas backup generators are now a common theme in all our houses, this has been a growing trend since the year of the big East Coast blackout. Electronics and automation is on the rise with more tech savy clients wanting to be able to control their house functions from there smart phones.

The trend for pre 2008 were that the houses grew in size, but were close to the same price per square foot and tended to be in the chalet or country style. The trend in 2012 was houses of all sizes, shapes, styles and locations but with an ever rising price per square foot.

•         Energy efficiency in all the aspects of the home is growing year over year, 2012 was no different. High efficiency gas furnaces are now the norm and if the property allows geothermal heating in the rural area's then this seems to be the only sensible option for houses that have no access to natural gas. With the changing of the Ontario building code more insulation is being added to houses, in the walls, the basement and in the attic because of the new code. With the ever rising cost of electricity there is a push to do as much of the components of the home in natural gas as possible. To help properly heat houses evenly homeowners are opting for electronic dampers, these are run on low voltage and operate on an independent thermastat that allows you to have different temperatures in every part of the house, this is done by controlling where the air goes when it comes form the furnace.

•         A larger percentage of houses that we built or were building in 2012 were getting away from wood siding and are turning to stone, steel or cement siding. By wood siding is still the most popular option in custom homes overall.

•         Steel roofs have become the most popular option for at least half of the houses that were built. With the uncertainty of the quality of shingles these days and the extreme weather steel will continue to grow in popularity. Enviroshake is the other option that is growing in popularity; this is an environmentally friendly product that is made of recycled materials, rubber and waste from ethanol plants.

•         Decking is undergoing a major revolution with so many new products and options. Composite decking is becoming the most popular because of its longevity, but a new product on the market that is making a major dent is called thermally modified wood. Thermally modified wood is the process of heating and pressurizing wood until the cells collapse. This makes the product last a lot longer than conventional decking. The product is suppose to last for 40 years before you have to worry about rot. Also the natural wood decking turns silver like cedar after a short time but if you want the natural wood look then all you have to do is stain it with a special stain that is provided for you and it will look new for years to come.

•         Fireplaces are growing in size, especially natural gas fireplaces, with so many options out there people are being buried by choices and so are builders. The new style is to install fireplaces that are wider then they are tall so that the fireplace is 1 or 2 ft high and 2 to 4 ft wide. These fireplaces give a very modern look to a room and can be installed in smaller spaces.

•         Painted trim is the most popular way to finish off the house in 2012 and reclaimed floors that are finished on site were also extremely popular. This is a trend that has continued from previous years.

•         Window sizes seem to have grown in size. Also the amount of different manufactures that we seem to be using has continued to grow as well. New to windows is the availability to pick windows that allow solar heat in or completely block it depending on which direction the house faces.

•         Houses with attached double car garages seems to be the norm again in 2012, this is a trend that has continued for many years. Garages have become more important than the space that you could use for landscaping. People are opting to maximize the building size on the lot.

•         Master suites are the norm in all houses built in 2012; this is a trend that has continued for years. Suites commonly all contain a large bedroom, large Ensuite bathroom and an ever growing walk in closet with custom shelving units installed.

Overall it seems that homeowners are becoming more and more confused with the over abundance in choices that they are able to find on either the internet or in the stores. There is a growing lag on the building process because of homeowners being bogged down with choices and in some cases doubling the time it takes to build a custom home.

Employment

2012 see’s Heather the estimator leave at the end of the year because she is having a baby. Congratulations to her and welcome to Craig who will be taking her place while she is gone. Craig is no stranger to Village Builders; he is one of our carpenters that is moving in the office and out of the cold for the winter.

Design Department

This year marks the 2nd anniversary of the interior design department at Village Builders.

Village Builders would like to thank all our clients that chose to use us this year, you all helped make it another great year for Village Builders Inc in 2012.

Rob Abbott
Operations Manager
Village builders Inc.

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