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Articles by Mike Murphy

Murphy's Law: Find the R in ROI

The concept of return on investment (ROI) is fairly simple: everyone wants something back from their investment. The complication begins when you question the customer as to how they measure ROI. Is the return measured in dollars, or design, or bragging rights? It is different for everyone.
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Murphy's Law: Happy Fourth of July

The Fourth of July weekend is always one of the most dangerous on the highways, primarily because there are a lot of celebrations involving alcohol. Here’s hoping everyone you know is safe and sound today.
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Murphy's Law: Stimulus Funds Hit the Streets

Having been on the phone with commercial contractors the last week or two, there is a little bit of discussion as to how the 2009 stimulus funds will be spent.
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Murphy's Law: Tax Credits and Efficiency

A recent opinion on this page (“Tax Credits Tough to Use,” May 25, 2009) received a lot of attention from our vast readership and we received a variety of comments. Since that point in time, The NEWS has spoken to quite a few people and unraveled a bit more of this very large ball of twine.
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Murphy's Law: 10 Next Big Things

Have you ever thought about what new information or technologies might influence your future? Sure, while waiting in a city log jam you have thought of jet packs that can fly you across town in rush-hour traffic, but have you given consideration as to what might change your business life?
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Murphy's Law: Refrigerant Change Is Plentiful

A recent front page story described an acceleration of the transition from HFC refrigerants to even more environmentally friendly carbon dioxide or hydrocarbon (HC) alternatives. And, this, before many contractors have begun to comprehend the nearing transition of HCFCs to HFCs.
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Murphy's Law: Taxes - The Good and Bad News

In 2006, the federal government enacted a 3 percent withholding tax on public construction contracts. The good news is that the enactment date is still pending - it won’t go into effect until 2012. The bad news is that it was a bad idea in the first place.
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Murphy's Law: Tax Credits Tough to Use

Some of us have come to the conclusion that the tax credits provided for in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) are very confusing. Unless you are promoting geothermal or other renewable energy products, you may be having a hard time finding tidy little system matches for your customers.
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Murphy's Law: Tax Credit Confusion

The basic HVAC system tax credit for 2009 and 2010 that went into effect in January of this year is for up to 30 percent of an installation, not to exceed $1,500. (A geothermal installation can provide even greater tax credits for your customers.)
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Murphy's Law: Twitter, Facebook, The NEWS

Social networking is quite the rage - I read that Twitter is the fastest growing, rapidly catching up to Facebook for total members. The NEWS has had a Facebook page for a while, and I just started tweeting about three weeks ago.
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2014 SMACNA Annual Convention

Views from the 2014 SMACNA Annual Convention in San Antonio.


NEWSMakers: Chris Mathis

Chris Mathis, president of Mathis Consulting Co. and vice chair of ASHRAE’s residential ad hoc committee, talks about ASHRAE’s exploration into the residential market. Posted on Oct. 17.

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NEWS 10-20-14 cover

2014 October 20

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DOE has denied AHRI’s petition for reconsideration of walk-in standards. Is it getting harder to reach consensus on efficiency standards?
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2015 National Plumbing & HVAC Estimator

Every plumbing and HVAC estimator can use the cost estimates in this practical manual!

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