Residential and commercial structures continue to pop-up everywhere now that the worst economic crisis in US modern history is well behind us. The housing market is starting to boom again which means so is the insulation industry.
The acceleration in construction activity is nothing but good news for our industry as the insulation demand is forecasted to rise somewhere between 6% - 7% annually for the coming years. It is also estimated that by 2019, the insulation demand will reach upwards of $10.4 billion (PR Newswire).
And what is leading the way as the largest insulation product type?
Fiberglass is and (projections claim) will remain the insulation product type leader by weight (Freedonia Group). Fiberglass will account for almost 50% of the $10.4 billion insulation demand.
How much fiberglass can be bought with $5 billion? Oh, not much, just a little over 4.5 billion pounds.
But, more stringent building codes, like those coming from the IECC (International Energy Conservation Code), might push companies to use insulation better suited for energy efficiency. The 2012 IECC and 2015 IECC have instilled code changes that look for a higher R-value and a focus on preventing air leaks. The 2018 IECC will look to continue the energy efficiency already being pursued by former code updates. Many in the industry believe that for these reasons, foamed plastic insulation might see a surge in installment despite the higher cost.
Regardless of what insulation product is used, it’s apparent with the increased insulation demand there is also the insistence for increased efficiency not just from the IECC, but also from consumers who are looking for savings with future energy cost.
With the large market increase and the potential for greater profits comes a greater sense of responsibility to our customers. Before, consumers had to essentially decide between having their structure be energy efficient or cost effective. New technology and product advancements have given installers the ability to now supply a consumer with both.
So, what will the future of the insulation industry look like?
Fiberglass looks to remain king with foamed plastic insulation not far behind it and a greater emphasis will be put on the energy efficiency of an insulation product.
The insulation industry, for the near future, is looking nowhere but up. Clearly, the industry is not without its own challenges, but hey, for $10.4 billion there aren’t many challenges we wouldn’t take on.