Positive economic factors predict a welcome increase in the number of construction starts during 2017. Led by low-interest rates and coupled with low unemployment, the picture looks particularly good for single-family homes, institutional and commercial projects. According to Dodge Data & Analytics, new starts are expected to increase by 5 percent in 2017, an increase over 2016.
Staying abreast of trends and locations in the types of construction starts can help a contractor bring in clients and stay busy throughout the year. Since 2017 is predicted to offer more work to contractors, this would be a good time for those thinking of going into the business to become licensed and for current contractors to complete continuing educational requirements by taking convenient contractor classes.
General Construction Forecasts in 2017
According to Dodge Data & Analytics, new construction starts are expected to increase by 5 percent in 2017 overall, residential and nonresidential construction starts are expected to increase by 8 percent. Multifamily housing starts are expected to fall about 2 percent, while construction for gas plants and electric utilities is expected to drop 29 percent.
Home Purchase Trends in 2017
According to a survey conducted by the National Association of Realtors, more than half of those who completed the survey said they expected to purchase a home in 2017. Over 60 percent are millennials. In addition, as baby boomers retire, many may be wanting to downsize. Because mortgage lenders have eased up on lending standards, according to the Federal Reserve, more buyers are in the market for both residential and commercial properties. This may be part of the reason that single-family housing is expected to lead the way in construction projects with a 12-percent increase over 2016. Because of a shortage of existing homes for sale, a trend that is expected to continue, now is a good time to help supply the market by constructing new single-family homes.
Areas Poised for Construction Opportunities
Big metropolitan markets will lead the way in 2017, with six of the top 10 being on the West Coast. However, some millennials, who previously located in the west because of job and earnings potential, are moving to the Midwest around cities such as Omaha, Columbus and Des Moines. While millennials represent 38 percent of first-time homebuyers nationwide, they represent 42 percent of home purchasers in the Midwest. Planned communities, energy efficiency and a smaller footprint are features important to many millennials.
Construction of Institutional Buildings Expected to Increase 10 Percent
After lackluster performances in both 2015 and 2016, the construction of institutional buildings is expected to increase in demand in 2017. From transportation terminals to schools, even larger projects such as convention centers and casinos are expected to be on the rise.
Commercial Construction Will Remain Popular
The demand for commercial buildings is predicted to increase 6 percent in 2017. An increased demand for offices, office towers, redevelopment projects in downtown areas and warehouses is expected to lead the way.
Completing Continuing Education Courses Easily
Continuing education helps a contractor keep up-to-date on new technologies and laws, improve construction methods and increase efficiency. PDH Contractor Academy offers easy ways to keep up your requirements for continuing education. With both correspondence and online contractor classes, a contractor can take advantage of our cost-effective services, and complete the requirements conveniently from any location. Once the courses are completed, we notify the licensing board and give you a completion certificate for your own records. To find out more, browse courses by state to see how we can help you.