St. Louis unions pool $1.1 million to stimulate homebuilding here

union-2012-logoSt. Louis – For only the third time in the history of homebuilding in the United States, eight St. Louis unions involved in building homes have created a $1.15 million pool to help homebuyers purchase 100 percent union-built homes. The first program originated in St. Louis in 2011 followed by a second similar stimulus last year. In those two programs, the unions put up $1.6 million for this unique bonus program.

The program is a “win-win” for construction workers and consumers alike, designed to put union tradesmen back to work and give consumers a great deal on a new home they’ve been thinking about purchasing.

The unions will partner with seven local homebuilders to provide funds ranging from $2,000 to $10,000 (amounts based on price of the home but will average $5,000) to be used a closing for whatever the homebuyers desires: for closing cost, additional down payments, interest rate reduction, buying extras for the home, making upgrades such as a brick front or different flooring, a finished basement, said John Eilermann Jr., chairman and CEO of McBride & Son Companies.

The program is available this month only (May) on a first-come, first served basis for as long as the funds last and is available only for participating builders in the Missouri side of the region.

Participating are:

Unions: Painters & Allied Trades District 2, Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 562, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1, Sheet Metal Workers Local 36, Greater St. Louis Construction Laborers, Operating Engineers Local 513, Cement Mason’s Local 527 and the Carpenters’ District Council of Greater St. Louis.

The unions will provide the funds based on the number of hours they have in an average home. The actual dollars will come from either from the local’s treasury, their local or national market recovery programs, or from their industry market recovery programs.

Home builders: Bridgewater Communities, Dettmer Homes, Fischer & Frichtel, McBride & Son Homes, McKelvey Homes, Payne Family Homes and Simon Homes. These builders will provide an additional $100,000 in marketing funds over and above their normal marking budgets for print, radio, TV and Internet advertising.

A new key element to the effort is an agreement by participating homebuilders that they will ensure all the work on their homes is 100 percent union for a full year. On rare occasion, in the past, a participating builder had used a non-union subcontractor.


 “This program is a testament to the relationship between St. Louis’ leading home builders and its union partners,” Eilermann said.“ And most importantly it shows how the best way to stimulate our local economy and get people working again is to all work together.”

The promotion is called Neighborhoods Built by Your Neighbors, with the theme, “Working together to keep St. Louis working.”


 “It’s real cash for use at closing and it’s in addition to St. Louis Union Homebuilding Partnership Builder’s best deal,” stated Jim Brennan, owner of McKelvey Homes. “It’s really an amazing deal for buyers.”

“Our local unions are truly putting their money where there mouth is when it comes to getting people back to work,” said Ken Kruse, president of Payne Family Homes. “They have committed $1,150,000 in cash for use at closing to home buyers. That really says a lot.”

“ “This program is about neighbors coming together to make a difference,” stated Ted Dettmer president and CEO of Dettmer Homes. “That fact is when Union trades people are working they are buying other goods and services and that helps the economy grow.”


Barry Simon of Simon Homes agreed, “It is a great testament to the ‘can do’ spirit in St. Louis homebuilding. We are excited to be a part of it.”

The Neighborhoods Built by Your Neighbors program is exclusive to Partnership members, limited to Missouri communities and runs only during May 2013.

“We are proud to be a part of this program; it gets the economy moving and gives unprecedented deals for buyers,” said Bridgewater Communities president Tim Miller.

See for more details.

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