The buildings products industry continues to grow and evolve with every year. New forms of technology are introduced to aid manufacturers, or trade disputes and higher tariffs affect the cost of building materials.
Additionally, the construction industry, with its consistent number of projects and need for skilled workers, has impacted the building products industry and will keep doing so. However, out of all these factors, there are three main trends that those in the building products industry should be focused on as we head into the new year.
Read on to learn the three building products industry trends that we believe will continue to have a major impact in 2019.
Importance of Building Safety and Occupants and Employees’ Health
Over the years, those in the building products industry have mostly been concerned with how they manufacture their products, primarily the environmental impact of the manufacturing process. However, throughout 2018 and continuing into 2019, there has been a greater emphasis placed on the idea of healthy building, also known as how your building materials are affecting the building’s occupants.
This growing concern has been a focus for the American Institute of Architects (AIA), U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI). Instead of primarily focusing of the costs of constructions, property owners are becoming more aware of the materials being used to construct their buildings because, in this modern day and age, a building’s occupants and employees have more access to information about how certain materials can affect them and are, therefore, more health more informed and health conscious about where they live. This new healthy-thinking trend may lead to more investments in healthier buildings overall, which would have major impact on both the building products and construction industries.
Furthermore, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has created its own program with the help of the General Services Administration (GSA). It is called Fitwel, which describes itself as the “world’s leading certification system that optimizes buildings to support health. Simply put, its purpose is to gauge a building’s certification in regard to whether or not it provides a healthy environment for its workers and occupants.
Emphasis on More Resilient Building Products
The United States suffered over $300 billion in damage from natural during 2017. Given the historically tragic wildfire season that has occurred in California over the past few months, the damage numbers for 2018 may be even higher.
With the frequency and severity of these recent natural disasters in the U.S., property owners have become even more motivated to find durable, resilient building materials. The hope is that, with these stronger, sturdier building products, newer buildings will be able to better withstand damage from natural disasters such as fires and earthquakes, or even acts of terrorism.
For more information on more resilient building materials and practices, the Resilient Design Institute (RDI) has provided a list of resilient design strategies to assist those in the construction of new buildings or renovations of old ones.
Easier-to-Install Materials and Techniques for Unskilled Workers
As unemployment has decreased over the past year-plus, many contractors have struggled to obtain skilled workers for job openings. Despite how much of a boom the construction industry is currently enjoying, the industry still suffers from labor shortages.
No matter how many veteran employees of the construction industry retire, leaving numerous available positions, younger candidates do not seem to want to pursue careers in this field. Therefore, the construction industry does not possess enough highly trained workers to efficiently complete projects in a timely manner.
For a potential solution to this problem, those in the construction industry are turning to those in the building products industry. It is their hope that manufacturers can make their building materials easier to install for untrained workers.
Additionally, contractors are looking at new tools, stronger building materials, and different training techniques or instructional videos to help them as well.
It is greatly important that those in the building products industry keep these trends in mind as 2019 begins.
These trends will likely not be the only factors that affect the building products industry in 2019, but right now, they are the most pressing issues. Manufacturers who are mindful of these factors will put themselves in the best positions possible to succeed in 2019.
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