Industry Trends5 min

Helping Small Builders Compete Against the Giants

Big builder market share has doubled in the last 25 years and now represents about 50 percent of housing starts nationwide – and even 75 percent in some major metro areas. These mega-builders have huge budgets for both land development and marketing. It’s increasingly difficult for small and medium-sized builders to compete, but LP is committed to helping them prosper. 

“It all starts with product performance,” says David Klarich, LP’s Regional Marketing Manager for the upper Midwest. “We have many small and medium-size customers who tell us, ‘When I see the LP stamp on the back, I trust that it’s a great product and know you’ll stand behind it.’”

Gaining Data Insights and Pricing Advantages

Klarich says that LP’s service to smaller customers includes sharing data insights. “We want them to see us as a truecollaborator, not just a manufacturer,” he says. “That’s why we’re constantly sharing industry insights and data with them to help guide their decision-making. It’s also advantageous for them to use more than one LP product. Customers who have had a good experience with are very open to adding our new products like LP WeatherLogic Air & Water Barrier. When a customer purchases more than one LP product for a project, we can offer them pricing opportunities and assistance with sourcing of those products. Right now, we’re also offering first-time user rebates on several new LP products in our portfolio.” 

Valuable Training

Small builders usually have modest training budgets, so LP provides timely on-site training and numerous lunch and learns each year. “Smaller companies benefit greatly when the installation is done right the first time to reduce callbacks and gain installation efficiencies, and we feel that on-site training is of the utmost importance,” says Klarich. LP also hosts a variety of local training events, like the LP® FlameBlock® Fire-Rated Sheathing burn events where both builders and architects were able to see how the product performs with their own eyes. 

Direct Support for Success

This responsive, face-to-face support is helping many small builders stay on the winning path. “Every week you’ll find us out in the field,” says Klarich. “Sometimes we’re meeting at the builder’s office to discuss marketing strategy. Other times we’re providing installation tips and on-site training. We’re here to help smaller builders succeed.” 

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Industry Trends5 min

Solutions for the Starter Home Shortage

The supply of modestly priced starter homes continues to drop nationwide. A recent report by Realtor.com found that the number of homes priced above $750,000 grew 11 percent last year, while the number of starter homes priced under $200,000 fell by 8 percent.

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News & Stories6 min
The What’s & Why’s of the LP® SmartSide® 5/50 Limited Warranty

Any building professional will tell you that the quality of a building material is only as good as its warranty. This is why LP Building Solutions created an industry-leading limited warranty for our line of LP® SmartSide® siding products. One that aims to ensure peace-of-mind for builders and homeowners.

Business Advice6 min
Why It’s Important To “Respect the Spec”

While it’s perfectly alright for a jazz musician to improvise, that approach doesn’t always work as well in homebuilding. Architects, specifiers, engineers and product reps spend many hours collaboratively choosing the right materials for each job – and an abrupt substitution to save a few dollars can ironically be very costly in terms of callbacks, design underperformance and even code violations. “Ideally, all parties involved – the architect, builder and developer – have reviewed the spec before it’s final and have agreed on all the products being used,” says Karen Alves, LP Brand Marketing Associate. “That’s because finding an ‘equivalent’ for siding or fire-rated sheathing involves not just the substrate but the codes that the product meets as well.”

Business Advice4 min
Siding That’s a Cut Above

Siding installers use many different brands of circular saws, but their preferred saw may not be as important as the siding material they are cutting with it. Some builders can sometimes be a bit removed from the importance placed on saw choice and would probably rely on their subcontractors choice, like Brent Taylor. “I don’t have much of an opinion on that because I use subcontracted labor,” says Brent Taylor, owner of O.C. Taylor in Raleigh, North Carolina, who was featured in an episode of Designing Spaces on Lifetime Network renovating a century-old house using LP® SmartSide® Trim & Siding.