What was the main objective of the Innovation + Housing panel discussion?
The intent of the recent panel discussion was to open up the lines of communication between community leaders in hopes to find new and innovative solutions to our area’s housing challenges. Community leaders now have a place to start collaborating and sharing ideas to create a more positive, vibrant community in the Wilmington area. Majestic Kitchen and Bath Creations wants to help engage in conversation between the community, government leaders, and builders.
What are some of the items that need to be discussed when considering changes to our area’s housing process?
We need to step back and look at the entire housing process starting with land development, regulatory challenges, and the home building process. From there, we can innovate to create more affordable housing in our area. The word “affordable,” when discussing housing, has changed over the years. In our community, many middle-class working residents struggle to become homeowners because the affordable homes are in short supply and priced beyond their capabilities. By finding ways to improve the housing process, we can help make it a better fit for the future needs of our working residents. The speed and efficiency of land development, how it’s zoned, density rules, and even the inspection process are all things that need attention and discussion in order to improve. Streamlining all these processes will help everyone involved create more affordable housing. The housing challenges we face are holistic in nature, so each community leader has a role in creating a more efficient process to compliment the needs of our growing market.
What established cities can we learn from while planning for growth Wilmington?
Cities like Charleston, Savannah, and other coastal communities are dealing with an influx of population and are facing many of the same challenges as Wilmington. We can look to these communities for ideas that have been tested and led to positive results, but we also need to learn from their mistakes. While we can model some of these cities’ planning efforts, Wilmington is unique and will require a thoughtful and specific plan of its own.
How are builders in our area helping to promote change and growth in our community?
We have several outstanding builders - local and national - who are contributing to positive growth in our community and open to innovation. Each builder contributes something different to our area and what creates success and innovation in our market are the different perspectives they have. Reusing and adapting space are both unique strategies that builders in our area are adopting as they evolve with the demands of our current market. All of their combined strategies and ideas will work together to innovate our housing market.
What do you hope this community leader panel discussion will achieve?
My hope is that we each can play a part to adjust and contribute to the needs of our growing community. Wilmington is growing, and with growth comes an opportunity to make changes that better fit our housing needs. This event was another step in the right direction to promote collaboration between community leaders and Majestic will continue to make efforts to keep the conversation going.
What do you think is in store for the housing market in the year ahead?
The year ahead has a much different look than the previous two years. In the Fall of 2018, our area was slammed by Hurricane Florence and the clean-up effort consumed the rest of that year and in to 2019. While 2019 marked a new year, our area was still dealing with the aftermath of the hurricane. The strength of our community prevailed and by the middle of 2019, our area was in a place of recovery from the storm. The new year in 2020 has started with more clarity and strength than previous years. Interest rates are attractive and our economy is strong, because of this, homebuying is on the rise, leading to strong demand for new and existing homes in the Wilmington area.This is the time to discuss innovation as we experience this type of growth.
Why do you think Wilmington continues to grow?
Recognizing the beaches and beautiful weather of the Wilmington area is one thing, but we have way more to offer. The resilience our community displayedafter Hurricane Florence was incredible. Not only did we pick up the pieces from the storm, our economy has been in growth mode ever since. Folks from around the country are visiting and moving to Wilmington because of its charm, local history, and innovative growth. We need to continue to grow and change with the needs of our community. Addressing the growth demand in our area will be no easy feat, but if we can all work together to make changes and improvements, the quality of life for all residents will increase dramatically. Coordinated planning between government and businesses to meet the long-term needs of the community is key.
Majestic will continue to promote discussions within the community so that Wilmington will continue to be a vibrant place to live, work, and play.
For a quarter century, Majestic has offered a wide selection of products for homebuilders, from counter tops, shower enclosures, shelving, door hardware and accessories for kitchens and bathrooms, in North and South Carolina. Acquisitions just within the last year of many well-established companies – including Builders Glass & Hardware Inc. in Wilmington and similar businesses in Greensboro and Charlotte – allow Majestic to be the most professional trade partner. Visit www.gomajestic.com or call (910) 762-2252 for more information.
Christina Haley O'Neal - Jul 31, 2020
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