Did you know that the North Carolina Home Builders Association is now made up of more than 14,000 member firms? That’s an extraordinary sign of strength and progress. As we all know the Great Recession seriously damaged our industry, resulting in many builders and tradespeople choosing to leave the industry altogether. At the time, our membership numbers reflected that reality. But today we’re growing in numbers at a steady pace.

Getting to meet many of you, our members, has been one of the greatest privileges of serving as president of the North Carolina Home Builders Association.

Recently I’ve traveled to the HBA of Northeastern NC, Asheville HBA and Caldwell County HBA, among others. At each of these stops I’ve met local builders, associates and affiliates who have committed to supporting and advocating for housing. I’ve learned about local and regional issues affecting home building as well. Across the state, builders are facing similar issues, from a limited labor supply to the rapidly increasing costs of materials.

Unfortunately, these issues can’t be solved easily or with a quick legislative change. But they do highlight the importance of our association and how our collective strength is such a powerful asset. And when we mobilize to serve our industry, to advocate for it and to educate the public about issues affecting housing affordability, our strength becomes so much more powerful than impressive membership numbers alone.

In the months ahead, I want to challenge you to get involved. Attend your local HBA meeting, serve on a committee, and get introduced to NCHBA. And there’s an easy way to get acquainted with us at the state level. Coming up September 11-13, the 21st Century Building Expo & Conference will be held in Charlotte.

The expo is a great opportunity to network with other builders, see the latest in building products and technology and hear from leading industry experts. In this issue, you can learn a lot about all that there is available to you at this year’s show.

Pay special attention to the Educational Conference information. The classes offered this year include NAHB and NC Builder Institute courses as well as general session seminars. What makes the Educational Conference so special is not just the high-quality curriculum you’re taught but the information you’ll pick-up from industry peers. Together with other builders you can freely share challenges, opportunities and lessons learned.

But don’t just take it from me. James Whitehead, an NC Builder Institute graduate who has earned the Accredited Master Builder designation, says, “The Educational Conference courses have made me a better builder and business owner. The structure of the classes lends itself to lots of open discussion and sharing of experiences and best practices.”

Finally, get your tickets soon and make plans to join me at The STARS & Galaxy Awards Gala on Wednesday, September 12, 2018 at the Omni Charlotte Hotel. This is one of NCHBA’s most distinguished events of the year. The state’s top home builders, marketing and advertising professionals, sales professionals and local HBAs are recognized at this event for their outstanding achievements.

I hope to see you soon!