Surpassing the Lifespan of a Mortgage

Jun 28, 2023DMA Engineering, Steven Forrester - Principal

In my recent blog posts, I’ve been discussing the significance of codes in our building industry. These codes serve as a foundation for successful projects, although I strongly believe that adhering to code requirements should be considered the bare minimum in most jurisdictions. To truly excel in building exceptional structures, we must strive to surpass these minimum standards and introduce innovation into every project we undertake.

At present, our ongoing luxury residential projects are a testament to DMA’s commitment to going above and beyond code requirements. Using the EnergyStar NextGen standards as a minimum benchmark, we can surpass basic code expectations. Some of our current exceptional projects include a Marshall Fire rebuild and several others in Boulder County that meet this standard.

However, it’s important to acknowledge that embracing a mindset of surpassing code requirements is not universally embraced among general contractors. While certain regions exhibit a culture of striving for excellence beyond code, it is not yet widespread. As a mechanical engineer driven by a desire for superior results, I advocate for surpassing code requirements to achieve multiple benefits. By doing so, we have smaller mechanical systems, enhanced occupant comfort, and reduced operating costs. Ultimately, our goal is to deliver a homeowner a product that surpasses the lifespan of their mortgage.

Malcom Caldwell describes a critical juncture where something unique transitions from being an exception to being widely accepted by the masses as a tipping point. Presently, we have yet to reach a tipping point in the building industry, as most general contractors are not yet prepared to exceed code requirements. Therefore, I envision a future in which localized codes will be necessary to propel the industry forward. Nevertheless, we must approach this transition with caution, as outlined in my previous blog post. If not handled correctly, imposing doctrinarian localized codes could inadvertently stifle innovation and hinder industry progress.