July 31, 2009
  Home Sizes Shrink as Downturn Continues
A majority of residential architects report home sizes to be declining nationally, according to the latest AIA Home Design Trends Survey. As the industry heads into the next recovery, the economic downturn may have precipitated the most significant right-sizing of U.S. homes in the country’s history.

The World • Raising Money • Energy

The World: China is poised to pass Japan as world’s number two economy.
Raising Money: Munis still struggle, but heating bond market’s a good sign.
Energy: Thorium a safer replacement for uranium in nuclear power plants.

ARE Fee to Increase Oct. 1
The National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) announced in June that it will increase the fees for the Architect Registration Examination® (ARE®) by $40 per division effective October 1, 2009. The increase, which was announced at the NCARB Annual Meeting and Conference in Chicago, is due to recent incidents of exam content disclosure by ARE candidates, they report, noting that the cost to develop and replace the exposed content and handle the administrative and legal costs related to these incidents totals an estimated $1.1 million.

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Welcome to the Business Zone
This is the place for our monthly Work-on-the-Boards survey report, quarterly Housing Trends survey report, and biannual Consensus Forecast, all by AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker, PhD, Hon. AIA. You’ll also find tips for managing the business side of your practice, as well as the weekly Kiplinger Connection.