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Sep 21, 2022

Housing 2.0 Program: Transform Your Business in 12 Hours [Sponsored]

The Housing 2.0 program, led by Sam Rashkin and hosted by Green Builder Media, is focused on the future of the residential construction industry. With discussions centered around modular construction, indoor air quality, and optimizing home designs, the program aims to drive change and innovation in the industry.

By: Mike Collignon

Exterior of a new construction home with the garage door open. There is a tractor in the yard.

As the Program Manager for the Housing 2.0 program hosted by Green Builder Media and led by Sam

Rashkin, I’m afforded a front-row seat for some fascinating discussions involving very smart, forward-thinking building professionals. All of these discussions are under the guise of what the residential construction industry will look like in the next decade.

Now, I know what you might be thinking: “Homebuilding and the housing industry, in general, don’t change very much.” It’s hard to argue with that, and we’ve even seen imagery during our workshops that support that statement. However, the truth is there have been some changes. The question that lies before us is: How much more will it change, and how fast?

That answer, in my opinion, will be determined in three ways:

First, how much and how soon will home buyers demand new designs, products and techniques?

Second, builders often say they’ll meet their clients’ demands. But there are times when builders talk their clients out of something new because the builder is uncomfortable changing their established ways.

Third, will manufacturers continue to innovate and push the envelope? Will they meet the increasing chorus from younger home buyers for more sustainably-minded products?

Modular Construction In the Spotlight

After witnessing eight workshops, I’m encouraged that we will start to see a shift in residential construction. Why? The Housing 2.0 program participants have not been hesitant to lead the discussions in the direction(s) they want. Of all the topics that could have caught the attention of our Q1 workshop participants, they wanted to delve into manufactured housing.

The benefits are evident: Homes constructed in climate-controlled, weather-protected factory conditions with the help of precision technology, reducing (but not eliminating) on-site construction, faster assembly times, less waste, etc. Are there enough of these factories to sufficiently service the United States? Not yet, but that could change with the proper investment and strategic location targeting.

Ideas to Improve Indoor Air Quality

Meanwhile, the conversations in Q2 have predominantly been centered around indoor air quality (IAQ). This has always been of some interest to home buyers and homeowners, but it’s usually found down on the list of priorities. The obvious exception is when someone in the family suffers from asthma or serious allergies.

However, since the pandemic really went into full effect, indoor health has been of heightened interest to homeowners and homebuyers alike. With COVID-19 being a respiratory illness, this has put the spotlight squarely on IAQ measures like monitoring.

Construction Project Charrette

Finally, in our first two Action Group meetings, they’ve been holding very in-depth discussions about optimizing their respective home designs. It’s a group critique/analysis that each of the participants wouldn’t normally be able to access.

The meetings have spurred some great discussions on block design, flexible designs, natural lighting, passive solar, and more. All of this occurred after the participants did a self-assessment to help them focus their priorities… and weed out the things that didn’t matter as much to them/their clients.

Success is often copied, so if other production and custom home builders see that something is working well for progressive builders like the ones attending Housing 2.0, I would think (hope?) that they’d start paying attention and also change their ways.

Doyle Dudley, Director of Purchasing, Thrive Home Builders is an example of a production builder who is making a difference in the market he serves. “I found the workshop to be fantastic. Extremely informative, well organized, and educational,” he says. “My background comes from larger builders where knowledge about health, energy, sustainability, etcetera was not that important at the time. I might actually have to watch the modules again to get the full benefit.”

We all know we can build homes in a better way. With the energy I’ve seen from the participants so far, and the way they take control of the direction, to me, it’s not if… it’s only a matter of when.

Want a taste of the Housing 2.0 program? Watch Rashkin’s free webinar, Why the Housing Industry Is Long Overdue for Disruption. To learn more about Housing 2.0 and to register, visit the Housing 2.0 microsite

This article was sponsored by Green Builder Media. 

Mike Collignon

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