So how will the US economy reward or punish Construction Supervisors? As usual, the answer is “It depends.” Regional trends may greatly overwhelm the national trend. Places like Florida that are so overbuilt may experience some depression like consequences. For example, I recently read about a Florida Contractor having his bank line of credit pulled (about $2,000,000) even though he was never late on a payment and was operating in the black.
For the national economy, though, I think the construction industry may not get whacked too badly. The hundreds of billions of dollars being offered from the Federal Government to banks will likely jump start many construction projects. When the banks have extra money to lend and the interest rates are low, developers tend to pull the trigger on projects. That gives those of us in the Building Construction Industry something to build. So what has been called the “Bank Bailout” will likely loosen the lending market and get more projects started.
President Obama will be pushing a huge Federal spending increase and construction infastructure projects will get more than their share of added funding. In these potentially terrible economic times, many economists seem to be agreeing that governments need to overspend and ready-to-build construction projects seem to be getting lots of attention.
Finally, as construction material prices drop and firms tighten their margins, it’s a great time for smart Owners to get their projects built. These Owners (that have the flexibility to time their start dates) probably won’t find a better time to get great pricing on a project than Spring of 2009. That phenomena will also help the overall construction climate.
I’ll end these musing by confirming that I’m no expert predicting the future of the construction market, but I do see a few promising trends that don’t get noted in the newspapers. Next year at this time you can tell me I was on the mark or a pie-in-the-sky bonehead. I’m hoping for the former.