For years, every time construction attorney D.S. Berenson, a regular contributor to REMODELING and a partner at Johanson Berenson LLP, in Washington, D.C., spoke at a gathering of remodelers he inevitably saw heads shake and heard people say, “How come we didn’t know about that?”
So he readily agreed that his law firm would support the formation of NAPAC, The National Association of Professionally Accredited Contractors, a new trade association for home improvement and remodeling contractors designed to offer — as its slogan says — “business and compliance tools for the trade.”
NAPAC focuses on sharing information on state-by-state legal and operational issues such as licensing, contracts, compliance solutions, legal risks, and technology as well as on business finances. Membership, which includes the monthly “NAPAC Report” newsletter and exclusive Web content, costs $499 per year and is open only to contractors, manufacturers, and others whose primary focus is on remodeling. Non-members may purchase the newsletter.
Meeting a Need
The association’s website, NAPAC.net, offers industry-specific news and developments, agency audit concerns, lawsuit alerts, downloadable contracts and other documents. “NAPAC will offer first-class intellectual, legal, and operational advice at a Wal-Mart price,” says Stephen Klein, president of Anthony Home Improvements, in Philadelphia, and a NAPAC benefactor.
The organization made its official debut at this year’s Remodeling Show in Baltimore. Founders hope NAPAC can fill the gaps that they believe other industry associations have left open. “So many business owners in the industry have nowhere to go to find timely and vital information [like this]. NAPAC’s newsletter [will] solve that problem,” says Mark Curry, president of Those Remodeling Guys, headquartered in Pennsylvania, and a member of NAPAC’s executive team.
Berenson, who sees a large chasm developing between professional remodelers and those flying under the radar, says, “You have to run a legitimate business to make money and stay safe doing it. I support NAPAC’s ambition to help a fragmented industry toward unity,” he says.
—Stacey Freed, senior editor, REMODELING.