If you go
What: Inaugural meeting of the Home Builders Association of Steamboat Springs and Routt County
When: 6 p.m. July 15
Where: Bear River Bar & Grill
Call: RSVP to Debbie Rich at 970-245-0253. More information is at www.hbanwco.com.
Steamboat Springs Gary and Teri Wall hope to elevate the reputation of Routt County builders.
Construction companies sometimes get a bad rap, Gary Wall said, and the two think the formation of a home builders group could help. Along with the Home Builders Association of Northwest Colorado, they've scheduled the first meeting of the Home Builders Association of Steamboat Springs and Routt County.
Gary Wall, who shares a name with Routt County Sheriff Gary Wall, was an HBA member in Grand Junction.
"It was a great benefit to the company," he said. "It let us network with contractors in town that we wouldn't have met otherwise."
Gary Wall has been in Steamboat since 1998 and runs Associated Building and Remodeling. He and Teri Wall are making the rounds, soliciting members and sponsors for the new HBA.
The group meeting is scheduled for July 15 and will include representatives from the Colorado Association of Home Builders and the National Association of Home Builders, said Debbie Rich, executive officer of the Northwest Colorado chapter. The first meeting is free, though the group charges membership dues.
Members of Steamboat's chapter will be members of the state and national groups also.
"They promote professionalism, higher standards of quality, advocacy," Teri Wall said. "You get a voice on a local, state and national level."
According to a flyer from the Walls, the group is "a professional organization committed to the advancement of our membership and the home building industry through political representation, community service and education."
The HBA has about 225,000 members nationally, Rich said. The Northwest Colorado segment has members in towns including Aspen and Glenwood Springs. Telluride just started a chapter, she said.
The Walls still are looking for sponsors and have raised all but $350 of the $2,000 meeting costs, Teri Wall said. The Home Builders Association is open to anyone connected to building. That includes developers, contractors, architects, subcontractors, real-estate agents, designers, home-theater specialists, plumbers, surveyors and others.
"If you're involved with the building trade whatsoever, you're as important as anybody," Gary Wall said.
The first meeting is open to all, but the group requires people to apply for membership, the Walls said.
Members are required to settle disputes with customers reasonably and without litigation, Gary Wall said. Those who don't could be kicked out. By requiring members to meet standards, the group tells customers that their builder is reputable, the Walls said.
"Steamboat's going to know if you're hiring HBA members, you're hiring the best," Teri Wall said.
The group needs only 15 people to start a chapter. The Walls said they've garnered a great deal of interest and thanks from builders who want an association chapter in the area. Once it gets going, the HBA of Steamboat and Routt probably would meet monthly.
The networking the group provides is good for anyone, Teri Wall said.
"I talked to a gentleman who said, 'I've been in the valley an X number of years, I know everybody,'" she said. "But you don't know the new people."
Gary Wall said membership in the group would be good for business. His wife said it would help people in the industry work together.
"It's going to bring a unity to builders, contractors, suppliers," Teri Wall said. "It's going to bring a unity to everybody who's involved in building in this town."