President’s Message: Will You Paddle into the Wave or Let it Crash Over You?

John WilliamsAdvocacy, Custom Builders, President's Message, Remodelers

The GHBA provides an excellent venue for staying up to date on policy, ordinance, and code changes which can affect your business’s viability. Depending on your line of business, how quickly you are able to adjust your business plan may be the deciding factor on whether you can ride the wave into a profitable year or get pummeled by the tidal surge and shut your doors.

For some of us, the line of sight may be short and a smaller business may be able to make quick, nimble changes. Others, like developers and builders, they may be making business plan decisions and investments years in advance. For these larger businesses with complex scopes of work and long term business plans, making changes may be like turning a battleship. You need to stay informed in order to make the best, timely decisions.

Accurate foresight is key to success for all of us—large or small. Our market and the “rules of the game” are always changing.


Most recently many of us are still reeling from changes to flood plain regulations. As I write this, many are also working feverishly to help abate serious issues with proposed drainage and detention requirements for much of the surrounding area that may go into effect with little or no transition period.

Just yesterday we were discussing a local developer who has several years and millions of dollars invested in a project that now may be cost prohibitive to proceed. This kind of rash and hastily implemented policy change can ruin companies. You may ask, what can we do about it and how can we protect affordable housing?

In addition to keeping members well informed about policy, ordinance and code changes, the GHBA also provides an excellent collaboration of industry experts and lobbyists to address our concerns through providing unparalleled stakeholder expertise in working with various governing bodies.

Being part of the discussion allows for an opportunity to shape more reasonable policy as well as giving our members the business advantage of being first informed about important expected industry changes.

What makes our team so great is the concerted effort of informed and committed industry stakeholders. We wouldn’t enjoy these benefits without the engagement of our members, so I ask you all to contribute where you can. There are many different ways to get more involved.

The easiest access is simply reviewing the weekly GHBA newsletter email, which highlights several areas of topical information. This is supplemented by the monthly Houston Builder magazine you are reading now.

Once you come across a topic of interest, I strongly suggest attending the most applicable council or committee that relates to your business, whether it be Volume Builders Committee, Developers Council, Associate Council, Remodelers Council, Custom Builders Council, Sales and Marketing Council, or our regional Bay Area Builders Association and Montgomery County Builders & Developers Division.

To dive in or contribute on a wider and deeper spectrum, GHBA’s Government Affairs Committee and HOME-PAC are on the front lines of our lobbying efforts and provide some of the best opportunities for impactful engagement.

We should all be committed to be excellent stewards of our industry and fearlessly protect affordable housing. As we associate together and focus our interests, we are much stronger and effective than as individuals. Through the GHBA we can stay most informed about important changes affecting our livelihood as well as create a meaningful and lasting impact for our region.

Get involved, stay engaged, and pass the word along to others. If I can be of any help, please don’t hesitate to reach out. Let’s continue the work this summer and paddle into the wave together instead of letting affordable housing wash away.

About the Author

John Williams

2019 GHBA Board President John Williams is a local home builder with K. Hovnanian Homes.