Alaska Construction and Home Improvement AssociationsAlaska's home building and remodeling industry's problems are unique from the problems of the other 49 United States. Their main concern is how to build homes with insulation and heating systems that can weather Alaska's extremely cold weather. Alaska experiences the coldest climate of any of the United States. So, builders and remodeling contractors need to construct homes that are insulated and structurally sound to keep residents warm.

Cold climate experts have compiled a set of standards and recommendations home builders can follow to improve the energy efficient of Alaska's homes. The state funded program is designed to reduce building costs and energy bills which is especially important for remodeling contractors. In a recent state poll on housing conditions, 7.5% of residents said their homes needed major repairs. 5% said their homes needed structural repairs or replacing. And, 68% of those surveyed said their homes are very drafty. But, due to their economic conditions, none of the residents polled were able to remedy these problems and make their homes efficient.

To resolve the problem, Alaska formed a statewide industrial partnership between cold climate experts from Building America and Alaska's building and remodeling contractors. The objective is to develop building guidelines for energy efficient cost effective homes. The cold climate designs have a performance rating of five stars plus, which is the highest level of efficiency. Contractors can receive a final report outlining the house's design, material list, and construction costs. Other recommendation from the cold climate experts call for the re-education of home builders through the Department of Energy. Contractors are

Anchorage Home Builders Association

The association was chartered in 1959 as the Home Builders Association of Alaska, Inc. to represent the needs of Alaska's home builders. The formation of the organization gave workers an opportunity to meet, share ideas, technical or product information with others in home building and remodeling. After, the economic and housing boom of 1976, the organization centralized their representation and formed the Home Builders Association of Anchorage. Since then, it has been known as the Anchorage Home Builders Association.

The organization is staffed by its 340 member volunteers who work on councils and committees. The association has councils for building, remodeling, membership/education, a home show committee, and government affairs/developers council.

Members can also take advantage of business management instruction in ways to reduce operation cost and increase profits. Or, they can access experts in the fields of finance, law, or technology to assist them with current issues happening in the home building industry. Members can also take advantage of the Pro-builders General Liability Program to reduce premiums and injury claims costs.

National Roofing Contractors Association Alaska

The NRCA is a nonprofit association formed to represent roofing contractors, manufacturers, engineers, and consultants in the United States including Alaska. They work to improve the industry by giving their members a competitive edge in the industry through networking, classes, seminars, awards, and charity affiliations. Their Washington D.C. representatives lobby for better tax policies, energy efficiency, workplace regulation and training, insurance and healthcare issues. Their member funded political action committee ROOFPAC supports pro-labor legislators and federal official.

The NRCA gives Alaska's roofing contractors the chance to meet others in their field at technical conferences. The forums offer an exchange for ideas on new technical developments in the field. Individual members have the opportunity to continue their education at the NRCA University. Roofers can receive training in technical programs, safety training, and professional development. While, NRCA contractors can customize their training programs to suit their business's needs.

Click here for the NRCA Alaska members or click here to find more roofing services in the state.

United Association Local Union 375

The union was chartered in 1946 as a unit of the United Association of Journeyman and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry. Currently, they serve over 500 members from their headquarters in Fairbanks, Alaska. Union members receive health and welfare benefits, pensions, training, contractor services, and financial aid.

The union has set a high standard of training for its member so they will earn higher wages and receive better benefits. The five year training programs are sponsored by the Fairbanks, Alaska area Plumbers and Pipe Fitters Joint Apprenticeship Training Committee and strengthen the skill level of member welders, pipe fitters, and plumbers. Members have access to training in EPRI rigging, UPC code, foreman training, UPC DWV review, basics of geothermics, boiler controls and combustion, refrigeration, and first aid/CPR.

The classes are available at no cost to members in good standing. To qualify for the apprenticeship program an applicant should be 18 years or older, have either a high school diploma or GED, possess a valid Alaska drivers license, and have been a resident of Alaska for the past three years. In addition, they must pass a Reading for Information Test, Locating Information Test, and Applied Mathematics Test. If the student breeches their apprenticeship agreement, they will owe for the cost of the training. You can read more about the union on their website

A wide range of home building, improvement and maintenance professionals can be found here.

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