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Front Page - Friday, December 29, 2017

A good year for builders

As I near the completion of my tenure as president of the Home Builders Association of Greater Chattanooga, I thought it was important to review the past 12 months and reflect on the many activities and accomplishments our association experienced during that time.

Among the highlights in 2017 was another successful Tri-State Home Show, which saw 350 vendors greet more than 8,000 attendees over the three-day period in March at the Convention Center.

We’ve been told many times by participating vendors that HBAGC’s Tri-State Home Show is the premier show of its kind in the Southeast. We’re proud of that reputation and will continue to work as hard as we can to maintain that level of excellence.

HBAGC had several other record-setting events in 2017, including its annual fishing tournament and golf outing. The HBAGC and Greater Chattanooga Association of Realtors joint economic luncheon in August welcomed National Association of Home Builders’ Chief Economist Robert Dietz and attracted a sold-out crowd to The Chattanoogan.

This year also saw the return of HBAGC’s Showcase of Homes. More than 5,000 people visited at least one of the 18 Showcase homes in Chattanooga and Hamilton County, and the 10 participating builders experienced overflow attendance during the two Showcase weekends in October.

HBAGC was active at the state level and its state association, the Home Builders Association of Tennessee, participating in three multi-day conferences in Nashville, Gatlinburg and Memphis. HBAGC’s Ethan Collier was elected HBAT vice president-secretary, making him the first HBAGC senior officer from Chattanooga in 34 years. And HBAGC’s Jay Bell was elected HBAT’s southeast region vice president, giving HBAGC two members on HBAT’s executive committee for the first time in decades.

On the local front, HBAGC continues to take seriously its commitment to supporting other organizations in need of assistance such as Habitat for Humanity, The American Red Cross and the Tennessee River Gorge Trust. And HBAGC provided substantial monetary support for scholarships to a number of local and area students who will be pursuing their goals of career in the residential construction industry.

HBAGC is committed to advocating for its membership and industry at the local, county and state level. Our government affairs committee dedicates many hours throughout the year working closely with our elected officials and various government agencies in support of the residential construction industry. The critical work done in this area cannot be understated.

This was another good year for new housing starts in Chattanooga, Hamilton County and the surrounding area. Residential building permit trends remain steady compared to 2016 and ahead of the previous four years. These numbers are important as the residential construction industry helps support 3,000 jobs and produces over $26.5 million in local government annual revenues.

It has been a privilege to serve as the president of such an outstanding organization. Next year promises to be an even stronger year for HBAGC on many fronts. With Jay Bell as HBAGC’s incoming president, the future is bright.

For more information on the local home building industry or to find true industry professionals, contact HBAGC at (423) 624-9992 or go to www.hbagc.net.