Infrastructure Heavy Construction

Infrastructure Heavy Construction

Infrastructure construction is under the “heavy construction services” umbrella. Infrastructure projects develop and repair or maintain services (often serving the public), facilities, and large systems.

Eight Types of Infrastructure Construction Services

Sometimes governments and private-sector companies collaborate on a large infrastructure project. Despite second-quarter losses, U.S. infrastructure construction services are expected to show growth for 2020.

Types of North American infrastructure projects you may be working include:

  1. Aviation – In 2019, the DoT (Department of Transportation) awarded $840 million in infrastructure grants to U.S. airports. Much of the projects focus on bringing older airports up-to-date, as well as renovating run-down runways.
  2. Bridges – Almost every day, we and millions of others access highway bridges. It’s no small concern that more than 54,000 bridges in the U.S. show structural damage and deterioration. The federal report said it may take more than 80 years to repair them.
  3. Communications – This sector of infrastructure construction services is all about technology. Connecting our country using WiFi, cable, cloud, and satellite technologies generate new jobs every year.
  4. Power/Energy – Our electrical infrastructure is one of the largest in the world. (We have over 160,000 miles of power lines.) Wind and solar energy are among the leading energy alternatives in the U.S., so infrastructure construction services are much-in-demand to develop and maintain these sustainable structures.
  5. Railroad – Bridges, track layout, and tunnels are infrastructure construction projects that safeguard rail transportation in our country.
  6. Roads – In 2017, there were 4.18 million miles of road in the U.S. Infrastructure construction for roads designs, repairs, and maintains mass transit systems. Principal materials used are:
    1. Aggregates
    2. Asphalt
    3. Cement
    4. Concrete
    5. Steel
  7. Water – Construction infrastructure projects include creating and maintaining EPA-approved drinking water facilities as well as waste/pollution treatment and recycling sites.
  8. Waste – These construction services create facilities and tanks to store, treat, and improve the environment by eliminating hazardous materials.

Marketing Made Easier – and Better

Not all of us in construction services can be billion-dollar infrastructure stakeholders. But you can run your business like a Fortune 500 company when you utilize Construction Monitor building permit data analytics to drive your marketing.

Contact us. We’ve got the tools your marketing strategy can use.

Heavy Industrial Construction

industrial construction

Two of the main construction services sectors within our industry are non-residential and residential. Within the non-residential sector are three subsectors:

  1. Engineering
  2. Heavy industrial and infrastructure
  3. Institutional and commercial

Heavy Industrial Construction Services: Building ‘Something Amazing’

Working in heavy construction services, “You’ll help to build huge industrial facilities like power plants, refineries, nuclear plants, mines and oil sands installations…” says Careers in Construction. Some of the biggest trucks in the world are on heavy construction job sites. One piece of construction equipment can cost millions of dollars.

Trends: Modularization and Real-Time Data

Construction and input costs for key building materials
(such as steel) are rising, largely driven by limited
supplies and tariff uncertainties.
Deloitte.com

The heavy construction industry has historically low profit margins. The 2020 global pandemic and resulting economic fallout put an even greater strain on U.S. heavy construction profitability. Between that and a shortage of trained employees, heavy construction services industry stakeholders need to better-manage the areas that impact profit margins and end-game profitability.

Module assembly yards providing fabrication and building elements pre-assembly can rapidly transfer construction components to job sites. Modularization can save on onsite labor costs, improve quality control, and shorten project timelines. The end result is the possibility of better safety (avoiding reworks) and costs savings.

Digital technology and real-time information will make the profit difference. Eliminating manual data entry and utilizing identifying trends can save money and time.

“Having state-of-the-art…tools and technologies is becoming a competitive advantage,” says Deloitte. Rather than seek damage control solutions to cost overruns and construction delays, real-time insights can lead to better-informed decision-making.

Real-Time Data for Real-Time Insights

Building permit data is fundamental to understanding construction services trends in your market. We provide customized, weekly reports that can provide insights on where in your world opportunities for business growth exist.

We have an active support team available to answer your questions. Call 800-925-6085, email, or contact Construction Monitor today. Let’s discuss construction data options that will benefit your construction industry business development in the U.S.

Construction Services: Property Plumbing

construction service

We think plumbing is more than “essential service.” Plumbing pros within construction services provide a critical service. 

Plumbing Industry Construction Services Outlook

For a while, new construction was so lucrative everyone that could got into the business. Whole subdivisions were developed using the “cheap and fast” model. Then, the fly-by-night building companies vanished.

That led to HVAC and plumbing professionals focusing on construction services damage control in some areas of the country. Repairs and emergency services will always be a significant source of revenue for our plumbing industry friends.

A new day is dawning because the internet brings knowledge to information-starved property owners. Focus is shifting toward quality construction and energy-saving options, like tankless water heating and shower/sink on-demand water usage.

When the coronavirus-related unemployment rates hit record highs, disposable income vanished for many homeowners. The demand for new plumbing installations and renovations nosedived as well. Before the pandemic, plumbing industry average rate of growth was 2.1%.

It’s difficult to find confident construction services growth predictions. Still, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts a 10% increase in jobs for construction services-related plumbers and pipefitters. It’s also predicted by 2050 there will be a 50% increase in freshwater demands. 

Commercial Property Plumbing: A New COVID Problem

Plumber Magazine says the risk of Legionella bacteria may increase in buildings that have been sitting empty for months. Legionella bacteria grow in stagnant water.

You may want to contact commercial property owners and managers in your area about additional water testing before they reopen. Even if you don’t provide water-testing among your construction services, this goodwill effort will not go unnoticed. (It could be a subtle marketing promotion for your business.)

Here’s a not-so-subtle way to generate new jobs and relevant leads for your company:

Construction Monitor Can Expand Your Plumbing Industry Outlook

Construction Monitor has construction services building statistics for the U.S. Our team wants your plumbing business to thrive. That’s why we encourage you to utilize the data we provide and use it with intent.

If you need marketing strategies for your plumbing company, contact us today. We aren’t successful until you are.

Understanding Construction Trends in Your Market

Your market is unique as your company. One small company has a baritone. Their work is great; their prices are solid. But some residential renovation businesses say they hire this firm because the guy sings as he works.

The key to success is capitalizing on your uniqueness. Once you understand (and appreciate) who you are, it’s time to understand the construction trends in your market.

FYI: Local Construction Trends Analytics

Successful companies – the ones you want to be when you grow up – are examining construction trends every day. Here are characteristics of home building companies that use construction data:

  • Every employee analyzes information, every day – Construction trends data isn’t something reserved for the family geek. If you can think, you can contribute to company growth.
  • Share and share alike – You may not be in a particular construction segment, but if you run across construction trends in a datasort that will benefit another company, share the information. They’ll return the favor. Networking with as many construction-industry companies is a formula for success.
  • Throw deep, run wide – Data-driven companies acquire more than local construction trends. They use varied information sources to grow their businesses. The more construction trend patterns you can process, the better.

The Best Analytics for Real-Time Leads in Your Market

Where the game used to be won or lost based on instinct and speed, it’s now all about crunching the right numbers.Jonathan Smoke, Metrostudy

Your data analytics should refer to what’s happening in your world, not another company’s in another area. One way to tap into what’s relevant information for where you are is our mapping tool:

  • Automatically count permit activity in a shown area
  • Customize what is shown by search criteria:
    • Contractor
    • Project type
    • Valuation
  • Display which contractors have the most activity in any given area
  • Identify all potential opportunities near you
  • Make digital notes on each project
  • Show all permit activity in the areas you choose

Contact the data analytics professionals at Construction Monitor. We’ll share ways to identify construction trends where you work…or want to work.

Essential vs. Non-Essential Construction During COVID-19

Construction during COVID-19

Retail stores and other commercial businesses have adjusted to the COVID-19 pandemic as possible. Social distancing governs how we live, work, shop, and play. We’re living in a strange time now.

There’s been much discussion about essential and non-essential services in the United States. How we do business in the construction industry is greatly altered.

“Essential” construction industry projects are prioritized and may resume quickly. “Non-essential” construction projects may be on hold another month. Or longer.

Essential Construction

San Francisco has defined essential vs. non-essential construction for in-the-works projects. There are 8 categories of essential construction projects that may continue working if they follow social distancing requirements:

  1. Affordable housing/income restricted residential units’ development
  2. Construction necessary to safeguard existing construction sites
  3. Construction/repairs for Essential Businesses’ properties
  4. Critical, non-commercial services projects involving homeless, economically disadvantaged, special-needs, and/or elderly
  5. Healthcare projects directly related to COVID-19 response
  6. Projects directly involved with maintenance, operation, or repair of Essential Infrastructure.
  7. Public works projects
  8. Shelters/temporary housing (not including hotels/motels)

The Gray Areas

Companies must follow state-and-local-government-specific construction guidelines. In most areas, non-essential projects are on hold. “New parts of a non-essential infrastructure project” may not be started. However, if your project falls under the non-essential category, there are situations in which you might be able to complete work.

For example:

  • Completion is permissible if the work needed to shut down the project is equal to/more than completing the project.
  • If a housing project has a defined percentage of affordable housing, construction may continue.
  • New housing starts must meet a “critical need.”
  • Residential renovations may continue if the continuance is necessary for safety/functionality.
  • Residential work on vacant properties may proceed if the work will make the property habitable. Construction can be completed to guarantee usable:
    • Bathrooms
    • Ceiling/walls paint (for sanitation to prevent mold/vermin infestations)
    • Electricity
    • HVAC (heating, ventilation, air conditioning)
    • Kitchens
    • Plumbing
  • Roof installation can continue for weather protection.
  • You’ve got 3 walls built. You can build the fourth wall so the structure “stands secure.”

Site-Specific Health and Safety

By now you have developed your company’s site-specific health and safety plan, based on COVID-19 Construction Field Safety Guidelines. Record-keeping is critical: You will need to be able to track employee movements and note potential exposure events.

Be prepared. Soonyou’ll need to work harder…and smarter.

Construction Monitor’s success depends on your success. And the success stories for 2020 will be the construction industry-related businesses that used construction data to gain insight and develop marketing strategies. Call 800-925-6085 or contact Construction Monitor to learn more.

What Does COVID-19 Mean for the Construction Industry?

construction industry

By April 10, 2020, the Associated General Contractors of America revealed more than half of the construction firms in the United States had stopped work and 40 percent had laid-off employees, due to the coronavirus pandemic. 74 percent are seeking loans using the new Paycheck Protection Program.

In one week’s time, the number of canceled projects more than doubled. Shortages, including personal protection (masks) and construction materials, were reported; a small percentage of contractors reported equipment shortages.

“The construction industry is ready to rebuild our economy,” said AGC CEO Stephen Sandherr, “But that can’t happen without strong federal support and investments.”

EPC Contracts Will – or Won’t – Protect Construction Firms

Projects that aren’t being abandoned will need to return to the table for renegotiations, but not quite yet. No one is able to predict when our country will return to nearly normal.

All bets are off regarding future market shifts. No one can recall dealing with anything like this. Ever. Every industry in the world has felt the impact of COVID-19.

Most project developers feel as if we’ve gone far beyond standard “force majeure” language in construction contract terms. “Contractors will likely re-think whether traditional exclusions for relief are acceptable,” said law firm White & Case.

EPC (engineering, procurement, construction) projects have been scuttled due to government-imposed regulations. Cities, state, and federal shelter-in-place requirements may impact force majeure unless there are changes in law; specifically, changes in the language of some laws. Contracts between construction firms and developers and stakeholders/investors will come under close scrutiny.

Recovery is Guaranteed

We’re Americans. We always come together in times like this and we will come back better for it. Try to avoid hard-and-fast business decisions based on economic advisories. However…

After examining the numbers – coronavirus and economic trends – here are what equity analyst Preston Caldwell and CFA Karen Andersen suggest:

  • Restrictions will begin lifting in June 2020.
  • Social distancing measures will return as the virus resurfaces throughout the year.
  • The dire predictions regarding long-term economic disruption are incorrect.
  • Fiscal stimulus should prevent a collapse in demand.

“Overall, we still expect a modest long-run economic impact, with GDP down 0.9%,” said the researchers. “In our view, a COVID-19 recession doesn’t fit the mold of a 2008-style recession with longer-lasting economic impact.”

Refer a Friend and Read Construction Monitor on Your Kindle Fire

Use this time to prepare for a construction industry economic upswing. And stay connected with us. Construction Monitor is the construction industry source for applied building permit information. Call 800-925-6085 or contact us today.

We’ll send a new Kindle Fire to you if your friend purchases an annual subscription. (This also applies to friends that were members before 2013.)

9 Things You Can Learn from Construction Spending

construction spending

Data – information – is available to everyone. Even if you feel confident you know your business, its goals, and your industry, it’s difficult to know which information sources can deliver usable facts and figures. Construction data, including building permits information, is pertinent to our companies as well as our industry. But there’s another source of information you should investigate: construction spending.

Construction Data; Construction Spending Statistics

“Construction spending” measures the amount of investment in new construction. U.S. public and private sector new-construction spending information is used for economic forecasts and financial decision-making. The Census Bureau studies the construction value-in-place (VIP) every month.

Construction spending estimates include costs of:

  • Architectural and engineering work
  • Contractors’ profits
  • Interest and taxes
  • Labor and materials
  • Overhead/miscellaneous

FYI: Construction Spending 2020-2026

Construction spending data has led to good construction forecasts for this year and beyond. However, doubts surrounding steel and other building material costs continue to be driven by tariff and supply uncertainties.

How You Can Use Construction Spending Information

If you think you’re a “small-time” company, then don’t bother evaluating U.S. construction data, including spending. And forget about following the global construction industry. That’s one way to guarantee your growth and profits remain small.

The only limitations you have are the business decisions you make. Here are two things you need to know:

  1. Timely, relevant construction industry information pertinent to where you work (your geography) is critical to your business.
  2. Global and national trends impact your local business.

Construction spending data can give you the information you need to:

  1. Assess monthly fixed costs (rent, salaries, utilities, etc.) vs. comparable businesses
  2. Improve your budget and money management, which:
    • Keeps costs in-line with projections
    • Leads to better decision-making for profit
    • Captures a more realistic idea of revenue potential
  3. Compare industry trends with local economic projections and building permit data
  4. Determine if your rates are competitive and reasonable
  5. Develop a concise business plan
  6. Evaluate direct cost expenses (project-related labor, materials, subcontractors)
  7. Evaluate industry trends
  8. Identify cash flow variances based on time of year and competition
  9. Reinforce planning/financial goals (and adjust when necessary)

Our Success Depends on Yours

Construction Monitor believes data-driven decisions are shaping the global market for every industry, including construction. Our mission is to provide construction analytics and information you need for success. Call 800-925-6085 (International callers 435-586-1205) or contact Construction Monitor to learn more.

Can Building Permits Help You Sell More Windows and Doors?

can building permits help you sell more windows and doors

Projected sales of windows and doors are trending positive through the end of 2021 and likely beyond. According to industry forecasts, the market will see increases of at least 4.5% this year and next. The increase will include products ranging from lower-priced, hollow-core doors and vinyl windows up through to the more expensive high-end solid doors and dual-pane, energy-efficient windows. The only question seems to be: how can you effectively identify opportunities to take advantage of this growth in a targeted area?

Setting Your Sights on Building Permits

The marketing edge you need is found in the permits. Building permits can be a gold mine of information about home construction and renovations, which also include installation of new windows and doors. Instead of a scattershot approach to vaguely-defined prospects, vital data harvested from building permits drives a more sharply-focused marketing strategy to reach out to the right customers at the right time.

A simple one-to-one replacement of an existing window or door without any alterations typically doesn’t require a building permit. However, resizing an existing opening—common when upgrading windows—or cutting an all-new opening to accommodate a new window or exterior door triggers the building permit requirement in most municipalities. Additional facts appearing in the floor plan accompanying the permit application typically include the number, type and size of windows and doors. The estimated valuation included in permit applications also gives you a snapshot of typical prevailing budgets in a given area.

Connecting The Dots

Armed with relevant information from permits, you’re also able to discern specific product demand, such as particular materials or desired features, empowering you to adjust your marketing focus to emphasize these products.  Permit data helps extrapolate from particular products or services to related options that might be in demand, too. For example, permit data indicating a trend in installation of high-efficiency HVAC systems or upgrading home insulation might indicate an up-and-coming opportunity for marketing energy-saving windows or doors as well.  

Fine-tune your efforts to identify expanding markets and product trends with specialized data from building permits. Contact Construction Monitor for more details now.

Construction Data Will Strengthen Building Materials Industry

building materials industry

The first quarter of 2020 is seeing many industry ups and downs; that’s not unusual. Despite a very healthy economic trend nationally, there’s still an edge of uncertainty.

What has been somewhat anticipated for the construction industry is real: Standard & Poor reports U.S. housing starts are flat. Homeowner renovations are doing well but expected to slow between 1%-3%.

The building materials industry will see solid strength in some companies no matter what S&P predicts for 2020. Flying-By-The-Seat-Of-Our-Pants, Inc. will have to smarten-up quickly because when times are tough, the tough look to marketing and advertising for survival. This decade’s building materials sales are going to be driven by construction data.

Why We’re Seeing a Slowdown

Tariffs on Chinese imports continue to be the elephant in the room, and negotiators are considering rollbacks. But an increase in tariffs could definitely hit us where we live.

The cement industry is dealing with CO2 emission cuts, primarily in Europe but we know that what impacts the construction industry “over there” is a good predictor of what’s going to happen here. The good news for concrete materials is many states are increasing funding for aging roadway repairs.

Millennials are becoming more conservative about premium building materials (floors, interior design in baths/kitchens) and are opting for mid-range materials instead. 

John McManus in the January 6, 2020 issue of Builder magazine says building materials supplies are being influenced by “L” words:

  • Labor
  • Laws/regulations
  • Lending
  • Lots
  • Lumber/materials

How Applied Construction Data Builds Your Business

Before you begin tightening your belt and laying off employees, know that 2020-2021 will be a year for 1.5% growth in our industry. Any growth is good for business. That’s simply less growth than we’ve seen recently. 

You can use this slowdown to play catch-up or use this time to cultivate your marketing and sales strategy. Request:

  • Area-specific commercial, residential, solar construction leads
  • Detailed statistics
  • Geographic building permit data
  • Project reports
  • Real-time construction leads

…by calling 800-925-6085 or contact a data professional at Construction Monitor.

You have building materials, and we do too. Let us help you build your business this year and beyond.

How to Learn About Construction Trends in Your Area

Construction Trends

Learn to spot construction trends before your competition and you’ll gain access to pools of potential clients eager to get in on the next big trend. Construction data makes it easy to identify emerging trends by showing you exactly how your target market’s demands change over time.

Track Building Permit Data

An increase in building permits issued for a certain type of project is a clear sign demand for this project is trending upward. If you see bathroom remodels are starting to overtake kitchen remodels, that tells you not only what skills your would-be customers might be looking for in a general contractor, but also what kind of cabinets, countertops, and floor coverings will interest them. As a roofing contractor, you might notice the demand for roof replacements is down, but more homeowners are building additions, so you can adjust the focus of your marketing accordingly.

With access to in-depth building permit data, you’ll see not only what types of projects are gaining popularity but also which aspects of those projects are changing. Even if the popularity of kitchen remodeling is holding steady, you might discover the average value of those projects is rising. That could mean homeowners will be increasingly interested in luxury products.

Examine Data on Leading Construction Firms

Paying attention to what the most successful construction companies in your area are doing can lead you toward profitable trends. Data on these companies can tell you what types of residential and commercial projects they’re focusing on, how much these projects are worth on average, and where the work is happening.

Looking over the data on the biggest local company might show you they’re shifting their efforts toward commercial office spaces. If all three of the local top companies are making that move, you’re probably onto a trend. As a building materials supplier, you can get in on the trend by preparing to stock more material suited to office construction and targeting your marketing towards the needs of commercial builders.

For more on using construction data to spot profitable trends, contact us at Construction Monitor.