08 Feb Winter Development

Temperatures across America reached record lows last week. During the kind of brutal conditions that have marred winter 2019, homebuilders have to strategize the safest, most cost-efficient way to build new housing.

Safety must be the number one priority on any project. Construction workers need adequate protections against workplace hazards like falling debris, as well as acts of nature, like the current polar vortex. Before and during the building process, developers should ensure protocols are in place to secure the safety of their team. While monitoring builder safety, developers should also be sure they’re using construction materials that can withstand icy conditions and keep the future homeowners safe. This includes using tools such as casings to protect electrical wiring and concrete curing blankets. These items are essential to maintaining building quality year-round.

Developing homes during the winter may lead to unavoidable, but necessary expenses. For example, areas with heavy snowfall will require daily snow removal from the construction site. Labor expenses can also increase due to worker safety compliance. There may be a need for an increased rotation of builder teams or it may be appropriate to offer hazard pay. To save on construction costs, developers can have parts of the home built indoors, then moved to the site. Some home parts are prefabricated and available through factories, allowing your team to get a jump start on phases of the project that can only be completed onsite. Before construction begins, you may find that building during the winter helps with the logistics of development. For example, building permits are often easier to acquire during the winter due to a lack of competition.

When temperatures drop around the country, safer quality-built homes are more necessary than ever. Developers seeking to address housing needs can provide solutions while saving costs and keeping their teams safe.

Bruce Freides