Industry Briefs July/Aug 03

USG Names Industrialized Manager
At United States Gypsum Company or USG (Chicago, IL) Ted Kellam has been named manager, marketing and technical services for the industrialized construction division, which serves the building systems industry.

A 19-year veteran of the company, Kellam joined USG in 1984 as a light steel framing engineer. Since that time, he has held many positions of increasing responsibility within the company’s technical and sales organizations. For the past five years he was a field sales manager in the company’s St. Louis office.

“Ted’s broad experience in both sales and the technical services area of USG will enhance our focus on this important market,â€? says David Wiley, director, marketing, industrialized construction division. “He has a strong track record for success and we are pleased to welcome him to this area of our business.â€?

USG formed its industrialized construction division several years ago to reflect the fact that many types of structures—ranging from single-family to schools and medical facilities—are now completely or partially constructed in factories. Previously, the division was known as the manufactured housing group.

RWC Offers Appliance Program
Residential Warranty Corporation (Harrisburg, PA) recently launched a new extended warranty program for appliances and systems. Called Platinum Advantage, the program is only available through a network of approved builders. It extends warranty protection beyond the original manufacturer’s standard warranty on a variety of appliances and systems in the home.

This package approach provides the homeowner the security of more comprehensive and long term coverage, but at a substantially lower rate than if they wre to buy individual extended warranties on each item of equipment, says Susanne Palkovic, vice president of marketing.

Most things break eventually. Appliances and systems within a home typically carry a one-year warranty from the manufacturer. Through Platinum Advantage, homeowners are protected against this potential financial burden for up to seven years on covered items. Without an extended warranty, homeowners may have to pay hundreds of dollars for repairs. With Platinum Advantage, homeowners are responsible for only a small service fee. Details 866-394-5135.

ND Joins IBC
The state of North Dakota has entered into a tentative agreement to join the Industrialized Buildings Commission (IBC). The agreement will take effect in August when North Dakota’s third party inspections program becomes mandatory for modular residential and commercial manufacturers that build six or more structures a year.

IBC was created in 1992 when the current member states of MN, NJ, and Rhode Island each enacted the Interstate Compact on Industrialized/Modular Buildings. IBC’s model rules and regulations served as the basis for North Dakota’s program. By signing an interim reciprocity agreement, North Dakota will be able to take advantage of IBC’s benefits before becoming a full member.

The addition of North Dakota means manufacturers can market their IBC-labled product in four states using a single approval and inspection process. IBC labled buildings can also be site din Kentcuky, which has an agreement with IBC, by complying with special plumbing plan review and inspection requirements.

Century of Progress in Housing
In 1900 U.S. consumers typically had to pay cash for their new home, since long-term amortized loans were not available. The typical new home of that era was 700 to 1,200 sq.ft. and feature two to three bedrooms and about equally split between having one bathroom or having no bathroom or even running water.

Today housing averages 2,265 sq.ft. with three or more bedrooms and 2.5 baths, along with central air conditioning, a garage for two or more cars and a fireplace.

These are among the revelations in a free publication from the NAHB that charts the countless advancements that have been made in housing quality, design and performance through the last 100 years. “A Century of Progressâ€? documents the evolution of the nation’s housing throughout the 20th century, and shows how today’s homes provide the kind of comfort, convenience and quality of life unknown to previous generations.

The new report presents snapshots of housing through time, including typical home designs and statistics through the years. It also charts 50 years of housing milestones, starting with the historic Housing Act of 1949, which established for the first time the national goal of “a decent home and a suitable living environment for every American familyâ€? and designated the private sector as the means of achieving that goal. The report is available free of charge at the Web site (type in “Century of Progressâ€? in the search engine box) or by calling and requesting a copy from NAHB Public Affairs at 202-266-8254.

California’s Solano County just installed new 230kW solar electric system, located atop the Health and Social Services building in Fairfield. The system, furnished by PowerLight Corporation of Northern California, provides enough electricity to power more than 200 homes.

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