Building Permit Reports Can Help You Make Better Business Decisions

building permit reports

Building permit reports are necessary for all construction and some home remodeling projects. To obtain a building permit, companies apply to the local (city/county) government and include a construction site plan and architectural blueprints. Getting building plan approval can sometimes take weeks or even months.

While the project stakeholders are waiting for the go-ahead, what are you doing? You should be using the information – building permit reports – to quickly begin cultivating marketing potential.

Big Business Strategies Also Work for Small Businesses 

If you think the largest chain stores in the U.S. use building permit reports, you’re right. Everything imaginable that is sold or serviced has a demographic or the potential to create a need in a region.

Up-to-date information is critical but historical data is necessary as well. Here are 4 ways to use building permit reports:

  1. Direct sales – Connect with contractors, subcontractors, architects, developers…key players involved in all building projects. Arrange a face-to-face to explain what you can do for them and why they need your product and/or service. And remember, when you don’t close a sale, open a relationship.
  2. Door-to-door marketing – New homeowners pay close attention to snail-mail advertisements. Never lose a chance to introduce your company to prospective customers.
  3. Expand – Subdivisions and new developments in a specific geographic area are your cues to consider another location for your business.
  4. Sit tight – Housing starts are the primary indicator for the economic situation in every locale. If you look at recent building permit reports and see a downhill trend, it’s time to assess your company position.

Business Decisions and Priorities

Making payroll, earning a profit, quality workmanship, customer satisfaction; these are priorities. Your business decisions consider those and many more factors. 

We are facing economic uncertainty and you may be making business decisions you’d rather avoid. But it’s a good time for building permits research and development. Take one or more tutorials and get a free report.

Subscribing to regular building permit reports from Construction Monitor is a good business decision. Contact us now to begin building your business for a new economy.

Using Construction Data to Compare Market Share

market share construction data

“Market share” is the percentage or portion of the market controlled by a company or its products/services. If you’re the largest distributor of construction widgets in Maricopa County, AZ, you have the majority market share.

You should use construction data analytics to keep an eye on other companies. (They may try to cut into your market share.)

Perhaps you would like to target another market; a different location. You need to evaluate your competitors. What market share does each company have and what are their vulnerabilities? Construction data using last year’s building permit information and historical trends will give you the numbers you need.

How to Calculate Your Market Share

There’s an easy, logical formula to calculate your construction-industry widget sales market share. First, pick the timeframe, such as 2Q 2019.

Take your total revenue, 2Q 2019 and – this is where it gets tricky – find the total sales revenue for all construction widgets in your market.

Divide your revenue by the total revenue and you now have your market share percentage. Or you could simply request a construction data detailed statistics report.

Markets Vary by Location

For every 1,000 average single-family homes built,
2,975 jobs are created.
Builder magazine

New home building trends show an overall drop in new housing between the mid-2000s and 2020. The world is so much smaller today! You should closely follow national and global industry trends. But you can’t lose sight of the fact that data for Mississippi may have no bearing on your company in Washington.

Coronavirus 2020 and You

Put your market share information to work, and do it now, while you’ve got some “down” time. This is no time to spend working jigsaw puzzles at home (Although many of us in the construction industry enjoy that particular hobby).

Pull the reports you need from Construction Monitor, then contact us and ask one of our construction data professionals for suggestions on how to implement a market-share action plan using construction data. Call 800-925-6085 to learn more.

Meanwhile, we wish continued good health for you and your loved ones.

Can Construction Data Help Your Appliance Business?

construction data

The small home appliance market forecast¹ for 2020-2026 was released in February. The small home appliance market includes:

  • Food Preparation Appliances
  • Heating Appliances
  • Irons
  • Personal Care Appliances
  • Small Kitchen Appliances
  • Vacuum Cleaners

The large home appliance market² includes:

  • Air Conditioners
  • Kitchen Appliances
  • Refrigerators
  • Television
  • Washing Machines
  • Others

If you sell appliances – small or large – you’re part of the construction industry, which means construction data can help you develop marketing strategies for tough times. Like today.

Use Construction Data to Strategize

The coronavirus pandemic may not have caught us completely by surprise. But few could have predicted the global shut-down for many industries, including the appliance market.

Contractors and homeowners are concerned about income, but when the economy bounces back – and it will – construction data tools will have you poised to take control of your geographic market share.

Timing is Everything

The only thing that overcomes hard luck is hard work. -Harry Golden

It’s slow right now; that can be a good thing. Developing real-time leads using building permits information is going to give you a competitive edge. Now is the time for you to lay the foundation to better your business. Building reports generate construction data that can be sorted by project information such as: 

  • Address
  • Scheduled start date
  • Types/job specifics
  • Value

How to Boost Your Appliance-Industry Business

Your first task is to decide what type of construction data will best provide the information you require. Building permit tools are available. Plugging them in is your job.

Basic construction data information may give you exactly what you need. It will also tell you the top 15 general contractors you should cultivate in any area of the U.S. (It’s free.)

Sometimes, more really is more:

Powersearch – Choose from:

  • Architects
  • Contractors
  • Developer/tenants
  • Owner/builders
  • Owners

…Then select residential and/or commercial construction. Whether it’s in-the-works new builds or temporarily paused renovations, connect with decision-makers. Let them know when they’re ready for appliances, you’ll be ready.

Construction Monitor: 30 Years of Construction Data Development

Startups must work hard to overcome experienced competitors. Established companies work even harder to reinforce their brand.

We understand what your business needs to succeed, and we want to help. Construction Monitor is the flagship building permits reports information source, and we work hard to be the best.

Let us partner with you today for a better tomorrow.

¹https://www.marketwatch.com/press-release/small-home-appliance-market-2020-global-industry-analysis-size-share-growth-trends-key-players-and-forecast-to-2026-2020-02-06
²https://www.marketwatch.com/press-release/home-appliance-market-overview-2020–impact-of-industry-peers-driving-factors-distributors-wholesalers-end-use-sector-by-region-by-country-forecast-to-2026-2020-01-27

Using Construction Data for Your Cabinet Business

construction data for your cabinet business

Basic building permit reports are public information. Anyone can access them. It takes time – a great deal of time – to fine-tune the construction data your organization needs and can use.

By the time you have sorted trends, projections, new housing starts, renovation requests, historical data… You may be too tired to structure a marketing plan. And that’s the primary purpose of identifying construction data found in building permit reports: to give companies a competitive edge in any kind of economic environment.

Trends in the Cabinet Industry

The U.S. market for kitchen cabinets is estimated at $9.5 billion and estimated to reach $17.1 billion globally by 2021. The growth is being driven by “showpiece” kitchens for new housing starts. Age-in-place renovations for single-story homes should include easy-access cabinets with pull-out shelving and racks.

Building Permits Give You Acess to What, When, and Where

If your business is focused on selling cabinets for kitchens and baths, you should know your customer base. Also know this: Your customer base changes and in this fast-paced economy, 5-year plans are ridiculous. Savvy organizations access construction data monthly and weekly.

Large companies use local retailers to market their brand. If your cabinetry demographics are national, building permit reports can tell you which areas of the country need nurturing. Which areas of our country are building-boomers? Your retailers need up-to-date, local construction industry data to develop marketing campaigns.

Strong Foundations for Future Success

If you pride yourself on creation and artistry – you are a cabinet-maker – your customer base can be national as well. “I’ve got more business than I can handle,” may work for you today, but your granddaughter crafting alongside you may feel differently someday. Provide the local, state, and national building permit information she can evaluate and use when the time comes.

Local Contracts, Cabinetry Jobs

Even though most cabinet remodeling does not require building permits, knowing which areas are aging and prime for renovation is important to your business. Also, keep in mind as more homeowners need wifi ports and charging stations in kitchens, the need for business permits may change as the need for cabinetry/countertop electrical installations increases.

The construction industry depends on special trades and subcontractors, including your cabinet business. If you want the jobs, use construction data customized for your area and your company. Contact Construction Monitor.

What Can I Learn from Building Permit Reports?

building permit reports

It’s difficult to think of any industry that isn’t impacted by housing starts and residential or commercial development. Business magazine Entrepreneur¹ says any organization that depends on a physical location needs to evaluate customer availability, accessibility, and proximity to other businesses/services. Building permit reports provide that information.

Location, Location, Location

Even internet-based companies target their audiences based on geographics. You can sell vacuum cleaners in dust storms if you target the right market. (Buy-online DIY swimming pool kits don’t sell well in Antarctica.)

Building permit reports give you information about which locales are developing, remodeling, or stagnant. You can drill down U.S. housing starts and building permits by region (East, Midwest, North, South), state, county, city, subdivision development… These analytics can lead to informed, up-to-date decision-making.

Do you want to grow your nail salon business? Look for up-and-coming commercial and residential development. Is it time to franchise your unique bakery? High-traffic communities might be the places to examine. Building permit reports are the foundation for business development.

Types of Building Permit Reports

January 2020 saw the strongest gain in building permits² since September 2012. This information offers insight into key economic indicators: jobs, income levels, and tax rates.  

Building permit reports give companies information to increase income and profits:

  • Develop sales leads
  • Discover potentials for partnering
  • Identify competitors
  • Plan marketing strategies/campaigns

Types of building permit reports you can use include:

  • Agricultural buildings/sheds
  • Arts/museums
  • Banks
  • Cabins (private)
  • Churches
  • Commercial
  • Entertainment venues
  • Footing/foundations (commercial, residential)
  • Garages/carports
  • Grading/dust (commercial/residential)
  • Hospitals/healthcare facilities
  • Industrial manufacturing sites
  • Mobile homes
  • Motels/hotels
  • Office complexes
  • Parks/recreation sites
  • Personal care (commercial)
  • Private/public schools
  • Professional buildings
  • Remodeling/additions (commercial/residential)
  • Reroofs (commercial/residential)
  • Residential (single-family, duplexes, apartments/condos)
  • RV parks
  • Solar/alternative energy provider sites (commercial/residential)
  • Storage buildings
  • Swimming pools/spas
  • Transportation-related structures
  • Utility provider sites
  • Vehicle (auto/truck) sites for sales/service
  • Warehouses
  • Wholesale facilities

Successful Businesses Use Building Permit Data

Spring 2020 will be filled with profitable opportunities. You can be the company others look to for ideas and inspiration. Information is your differential. 

Let Construction Monitor explain more about construction data and analytics customized for your business. Call 800-925-6085 or contact us today.

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.

4 Ways to Use Building Permits

Building Permits

Few can predict the future, but economists try. U.S. economists watch building permit application trends very carefully. They review monthly statistics. Based on the number and types of building permits applied for by homeowners, land developers, and businesses, economists can reveal “economic indicators.”

Let’s say you’re considering expanding your flooring business. There has been a marked increase in single-family home building permits in one region just outside your service area.

You’ll cultivate the contractors and builders winning the new construction bids. But it might be worth your time and money to add a satellite center in an area that will be frequented by the new homeowners.

That’s one way to use building permits data to grow your business. Here are four more:

1. Competitive Analysis

If your business is doing more than it can handle, work that success and expand. If your competitor is getting the work you need, figure out why. Use building permits information to determine the relationships your competitors have with customers, builders, architects, and plumbing contractors. Analyze their strengths and weaknesses. Develop your marketing strategy to build upon your strengths and take advantage of their weaknesses.

2. Demand Generation

When building permits reports indicate remodeling business permits are dwindling (and your business depends on renovations and conversions), take advantage of the downtime to create demand. This is the time to educate buyers about what your business can do for them.

Substitute your product or service word in place of the word “it.”

One customer said, “I didn’t know I needed it until you told me how great it was. Then I wanted it.”

That’s demand generation.

3. Demographic Data

Where are your industry’s products/services most utilized in your locale, state, and in the country? Those areas are great places to be but using building permits information can give you the information edge: Where are the demographic areas that will soon need your services?

4. Opportunities and Risks

You may understand how building permits can reveal opportunities. With targeted analysis, you will also be able to pinpoint marked economic downturn and potential risks.

Call 800-925-6085 (international callers 435-586-1205) or contact Construction Monitor to discuss how up-to-date information can benefit your organization.

Using Construction Data to Improve Your Website

construction data to improve your website

Construction data can help make your website more relevant and informational to your most likely prospective clients. Research shows interested customers don’t linger long on sites where products and services are not specific to the customer’s needs or locale.

Effectively prioritizing the information on a website helps generate maximum exposure and amplify sales potential. Utilizing construction data from building permits provides the raw information to accurately aim website content and attract the most suitable prospects.

Target your marketing

Data from building permits offers the opportunity to more accurately match services on your website to specific demands and/or a particular season. For example, building permit data can indicate particular areas where renovations and remodels are trending upward this spring. This information gives you an edge by enabling you to synchronize the information on your site to the rising demand in that specific area.

Localize specific services

Construction data can also pinpoint particular areas where certain services are increasing in demand. With accurate data, you’re empowered to target the site accordingly by emphasizing closely related services and products.

A spike in recent permits issued for water damage recovery might indicate areas where a market for structural repair and rehab of flood damage also exists. Increases in permits for installation of high-efficiency HVAC (heating, ventilation, air conditioning) and/or high-tech insulation retrofits could be a sign of increasing concern about local energy costs or environmental issues.

Track your competitors

Information about who’s getting what kind of work—and where—can be derived from permit data. If you learn contractors and other companies providing services similar to yours are thriving in a particular geographic zone or income level, that’s information you can use. For example, you can use such data to adjust your website content appropriately as well as localize your sales outreach to the most promising locale.   

Use construction data to effectively fine-tune your website content and engage potential customers in a targeted market.  Contact the professionals at Construction Monitor for more information.

Construction Data: What to Review This Spring

construction data

Construction data included in building permits changes with the seasons. Projects encountered in autumn, for example, are generally not the same as what’s happening in spring and early summer. Contractors and subcontractors can benefit from targeting their focus to fit the time of year.

Spring is the season for home improvements and remodeling. As the weather improves, houses open up and homeowners tend to start planning updates. Among the most popular are:

  • Kitchen renovation. Kitchen revamps typically appear in building permits as electrical alterations to accommodate the new appliances as well as replacement/expansion of kitchen plumbing. Cosmetic changes like installing new counters or cabinets, conversely, generally don’t require building permits in most locales.
  • Room additions. Adding a new room to a home or converting a garage is often not feasible during winter. As spring arrives, however, permit data shows that room additions spike. In addition to the general construction permit, there will be increases for specialty trades including electrical, HVAC, and plumbing.
  • Roofing repairs. That leaky or snow-damaged roof homeowners put up with all winter requires a permanent fix now that the weather’s improving. Any roofing work more complex than a simple single patch shows up in building permit data, including new shingles and subroof repair.  
  • Window replacement. Cold drafts and heat loss due to aging single-pane windows have taken their toll this winter. As summer approaches, the installation of new energy-efficient windows is often on the agenda. Because installing dual-pane energy-efficient windows usually involves alterations to the window opening or other structural changes, it requires a permit.
  • HVAC and associated work. Residents ready to upgrade a central air conditioner or furnace often put it off until outdoor temperatures moderate in spring. Replacement of a central A/C or furnace—or associated work such as replacing or extending HVAC ductwork—requires permitting and appears in building permit data for that locale.

Reviewing construction data for season-specific projects helps keep work and profits consistent as the calendar changes. Contact Construction Monitor for more details.

Why Windows Require Building Permits

building permits for windows

Construction data included in building permits reveals that both window retrofits and new installations are more popular than ever. Homeowners who are getting these new windows, however, often have a question: Why is a building permit required in the first place for the usually simple process of installing new windows? 

County building departments actually do have valid reasons for ensuring that replacement windows are subject to the permit process. Here’s why certain specifics about window installations often appear in building permit data:

Safety

Not all windows are created equal nor installed in similar places in a residence. Many building codes require windows in certain locations to have tempered glass rather than standard glass (i.e., windows immediately next to a door, windows that extend all the way to the floor, and windows in or near a bathtub or shower). 

Tempered glass is more resilient than standard glass; plus, it shatters into small pieces rather than splintering into more hazardous sharp splinters. Thus, tempered is considered safer in these locations and must be stipulated in building permit data.

Egress

Egress means that windows installed in bedrooms need to be openable and large enough for an adult-sized person to climb out in the event of a fire or other emergency. 

However, some existing homes may have been built before the egress safety standard became common. In that case, upgrading windows in bedrooms of these homes may require also enlarging the opening and/or other changes to accommodate today’s standards. To verify compliance, this alteration must appear in the building permit.

Style Matters

It’s not just finicky neighbors who want all houses to blend into the neighborhood. In many locales, the building department does, too. To that end, building permit data may require details about the replacement window style to ensure it doesn’t clash with other houses. For example, installing cheap, bare aluminum window frames might be prohibited by the building code in a neighborhood with traditional homes that have more subtle, classic frame styles.

For more information about construction data included in building permits for windows (and why), contact Construction Monitor.