Annual report pursuant to Section 13 and 15(d)

Summary of Significant Accounting Policies (Policies)

Summary of Significant Accounting Policies (Policies)
12 Months Ended
Dec. 31, 2020
Summary of Significant Accounting Policies  
Basis of Presentation and Financial Statement Presentation

Basis of Presentation.  On June 30, 2015, Masco completed the Separation of its Services Business from its other businesses and TopBuild became an independent public company which holds, through its consolidated subsidiaries, the assets and liabilities of the Services Business.  The Separation was achieved through the distribution of 100 percent of the outstanding capital stock of TopBuild to holders of Masco common stock.  TopBuild is a Delaware corporation and trades on the NYSE under the symbol “BLD.”

We report our business in two segments: Installation and Distribution. Our Installation segment primarily installs insulation and other building products. Our Distribution segment primarily sells and distributes insulation and other building products. Our segments are based on our operating units, for which financial information is regularly evaluated by our Chief Operating Decision Maker.

Financial Statement Presentation.  The consolidated financial statements have been developed in conformity with GAAP.  All intercompany transactions between the TopBuild entities have been eliminated.  

Use of Estimates and Assumptions in the Preparation of Financial Statements

Use of Estimates and Assumptions in the Preparation of Financial Statements.  The preparation of our consolidated financial statements in conformity with GAAP requires us to make certain estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amounts of assets and liabilities, and disclosure of any contingent assets and liabilities, at the date of the financial statements, and the reported amounts of sales and expenses during the reporting period.  Actual results may differ from these estimates and assumptions.

Revenue Recognition

Revenue Recognition.  Revenue is disaggregated between our Installation and Distribution segments. A reconciliation of disaggregated revenue by segment is included in Note 8 – Segment Information.

We recognize revenue for our Installation segment over time as the related performance obligation is satisfied with respect to each particular order within a given customer’s contract. Progress toward complete satisfaction of the performance obligation is measured using a cost-to-cost measure of progress method. The cost input is based on the amount of material installed at that customer’s location and the associated labor costs, as compared to the total expected cost for the particular order.  The total expected cost is a significant estimate in the revenue recognition process, requires judgment, and is subject to variability throughout the duration of the contract as a result of contract modifications and other circumstances impacting job completion. Generally, this results in revenue being recognized as the customer is able to receive and utilize the benefits provided by our services. Each contract contains one or more individual orders, which are based on services delivered. When material and installation services are bundled in a contract, we combine these items into one performance obligation as the overall promise is to transfer the combined item.

Revenue from our Distribution segment is recognized when title to products and risk of loss transfers to our customers.  This represents the point in time when the customer is able to direct the use of and obtain substantially all the benefits from the product. The determination of when control is deemed transferred depends on the shipping terms that are agreed upon in the contract.

At time of sale, we record estimated reductions to revenue for customer programs and incentive offerings, including special pricing and other volume-based incentives based on historical experience, which is continuously adjusted. The duration of our contracts with customers is relatively short, generally less than a 90-day period, therefore there is not a significant financing component when considering the determination of the transaction price which gets allocated to the individual performance obligations, generally based on standalone selling prices. Additionally, we consider shipping costs charged to a customer as a fulfillment cost rather than a promised service and expense as incurred. Sales taxes, when incurred, are recorded as a liability and excluded from revenue on a net basis.

We record a contract asset when we have satisfied our performance obligation prior to billing and a contract liability when a customer payment is received prior to the satisfaction of our performance obligation. The difference between the beginning and ending balances of our contract assets and liabilities primarily results from the timing of our performance and the customer’s payment. See Note 3 – Revenue Recognition for more information.

Income Taxes

Income Taxes.  We account for income taxes using the asset and liability method, which requires recognition of deferred tax assets and liabilities for expected future tax consequences of temporary differences that currently exist between tax basis and financial reporting basis of our assets and liabilities. Deferred tax assets and liabilities are measured using enacted tax rates in the respective jurisdictions in which we operate.

Valuation allowances are established against deferred tax assets when it is more likely than not that the realization of those deferred tax assets will not occur. In evaluating our ability to recover our deferred tax assets within the jurisdiction from which they arise, we consider all available positive and negative evidence. If, based upon all available evidence, both positive and negative, it is more likely than not (more than 50 percent likely) such deferred tax assets will not be realized, a valuation allowance is recorded. Significant weight is given to positive and negative evidence that is objectively verifiable. A company’s three-year cumulative loss position is significant negative evidence in considering whether deferred tax assets are realizable and the accounting guidance restricts the amount of reliance we can place on projected taxable income to support the recovery of the deferred tax assets.

Only those income tax positions that have a greater than 50 percent likelihood of being sustained upon examination by taxing authorities are recognized. There is an increased potential for volatility in our effective tax rate because of future changes in the income tax environment and the inherent complexities of income tax law in the various jurisdictions. Accordingly, provisions for tax-related matters, including interest and penalties, could be recorded in income tax expense in the period revised assessments are made.

Cash and Cash Equivalents

Cash and Cash Equivalents.  We consider our highly liquid investments with a maturity of three months or less at the time of purchase to be cash and cash equivalents.

Receivables, net

Receivables, net.  We do business with a significant number of customers, principally homebuilders and contractors.  We monitor our exposure for credit losses on our customer receivable balances and the credit worthiness of our customers on an on-going basis.  Expected credit losses are measured by segment using historical loss rate information adjusted for current conditions, with changes in the allowance recorded as a provision for (or reversal of) credit loss expense. Expected losses are charged against the allowance when management believes a receivable is uncollectible. During downturns in our markets, declines in the financial condition and creditworthiness of customers impact the credit risk of the receivables involved and we have incurred additional expense related to customer defaults. Receivables, net are presented net of certain allowances, including allowance for credit losses.

Inventories, net

Inventories, net.  Inventories, net consist primarily of insulation and insulation accessories, rain gutters, fireplaces, glass and windows, garage doors, fireproofing and firestopping products, and other products.  We value inventory at the lower of cost or net realizable value, where cost is determined by the first in-first out cost method.  Net realizable value is the estimated selling price in the ordinary course of business, less reasonably predictable cost of completion, disposal, and transportation.  Inventory value is evaluated at each balance sheet date to ensure that it is carried at the lower of cost or net realizable value.  Inventory provisions are recorded to reduce inventory to the lower of cost or net realizable value for obsolete or slow moving inventory based on assumptions about future demand and marketability of products, the impact of new product introductions, inventory levels and turns, product spoilage, and specific identification of items such as product discontinuance, engineering/material changes, or regulatory-related changes.  As of December 31, 2020, and 2019, all inventory consisted of finished goods.

Property and Equipment, net

Property and Equipment, net.  Property and equipment, net, including significant betterments to existing facilities, are recorded at cost.  Upon retirement or disposal, the cost and accumulated depreciation are removed from the accounts and any gain or loss is included in the Consolidated Statements of Operations.  Maintenance and repair costs are charged against earnings as incurred.  Gains and losses on the disposal of equipment are included in selling, general, and administrative expense.

We review our property and equipment as an event occurs or circumstances change that would more likely than not reduce the fair value of the property and equipment below the carrying amount.  If the carrying amount is not recoverable from its undiscounted cash flows, we would recognize an impairment loss for the difference between the carrying amount and the current fair value.  Further, we evaluate the remaining useful lives of property and equipment at each reporting period to determine whether events and circumstances warrant a revision to the remaining depreciation periods.


Depreciation.  Depreciation expense is computed principally using the straight-line method over the estimated useful lives of the assets.  Estimated useful lives are generally as follows:

Asset Class

Estimated Useful Life

Buildings and land improvements

2040 years


36 years

Company vehicles

38 years


610 years

Fair Value

Fair Value.  The fair value measurement standard defines fair value as the price that would be received to sell an asset, or paid to transfer a liability, in an orderly transaction between market participants at the measurement date (referred to as an “exit price”).  A fair value hierarchy is established that prioritizes the inputs to valuation techniques used to measure fair value.  The hierarchy gives the highest priority to unadjusted quoted market prices in active markets for identical assets and liabilities (Level 1 measurements) and the lowest priority to unobservable inputs (Level 3 measurements).  The three levels of the fair value hierarchy are:

Level 1: Quoted prices in active markets for identical assets or liabilities.

Level 2: Observable inputs other than Level 1 prices, such as quoted market prices for similar assets or liabilities or other inputs that are observable or can be corroborated by market data.

Level 3: Unobservable inputs in which there is little or no market data, which require the reporting entity to develop its own assumptions.

Goodwill and Other Intangible Assets

Insurance reserves

Insurance Reserves.  We use a combination of high deductible and matching deductible insurance programs for a number of risks including, but not limited to, workers’ compensation, general liability, vehicle, and property liabilities. Our workers’ compensation insurance is primarily a high-deductible insurance program and our primary general liability insurance is a matching deductible program. We are insured for covered claims above the deductibles and retentions on an excess basis. The liabilities represent our best estimate of our costs, using generally accepted actuarial reserving methods, of the ultimate obligations for reported claims plus those incurred but not reported claims through December 31, 2020 and 2019. The accruals are adjusted as new information develops or circumstances change that would affect the estimated liability. We also record an insurance receivable for claims that exceeded the stop loss limit included in other assets on our Consolidated Balance Sheets which offsets an equal liability included within the reserve amount recorded in other liabilities on our Consolidated Balance Sheets. At December 31, 2020 and 2019, the amount of this receivable and liability was $11.2 million and $5.3 million, respectively.


Advertising.  Advertising costs are expensed as incurred.  Advertising expense, net of manufacturers support, was approximately $1.4 million, $1.7 million, and $1.7 million for the years ended December 31, 2020, 2019, and 2018, respectively, and is included in selling, general, and administrative expense.

Share-based Compensation

Share-based Compensation.  Our share-based compensation program currently consists of RSAs and stock options.  Share-based compensation expense is reported in selling, general, and administrative expense.  We do not capitalize any compensation cost related to share-based compensation awards.  The income tax benefits and deficiencies associated with share-based awards are reported as a component of income tax expense.  Excess tax benefits and deficiencies are included in net cash provided by (used in) operating activities while shares withheld for tax-withholding are reported in financing activities under the caption “Taxes withheld and paid on employees’ equity awards” in our Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows.  Award forfeitures are accounted for in the period they occur.  

Award Type:

Fair Value Determination




Restricted Share Awards

Service Condition

Closing stock price on date of grant

3 or 5 years


Fair value at grant date

Performance Condition

Closing stock price on date of grant

3 years

Adjusted based on meeting or exceeding performance targets

Evaluated quarterly;
0 - 200% of fair value at grant date depending on performance

Market Condition

Monte-Carlo Simulation

3 years

Recognized even if condition is not met

Fair value at grant date

Stock Options†

Black-Scholes Options Pricing Model

3 or 5 years


Fair value at grant date

†Stock options expire no later than 10 years after the grant date.

‡Expense is reversed if award is forfeited prior to vesting.

Debt Issuance Costs

Debt Issuance Costs.  Debt issuance costs are amortized as interest expense over the life of the respective debt, which approximates the effective interest rate method.  Unamortized debt issuance costs are presented as a direct deduction from the related debt on our Consolidated Balance Sheets.


Leases.  In February 2016, the FASB issued ASU 2016-02, “Leases.”  This standard requires a lessee to recognize certain leases on its balance sheet.  Effective January 1, 2019, we adopted ASU 2016-02 using the modified retrospective transition method with the optional transition relief provided in targeted improvements ASU 2018-11, which allows the new standard to be applied in financial year 2019.  Adoption of the new standard resulted in the recognition of ROU assets and lease liabilities of $99.1 million and $101.6 million, respectively, as of January 1, 2019 on our Consolidated Balance Sheet.  There was no cumulative adjustment required to be recorded to our beginning retained earnings balance.

At the inception of a contract, we determine whether the contract is, or contains, a lease based on the unique facts and circumstances present.  Our facilities operating leases have lease and non-lease fixed cost components, which we account for as one single lease component in calculating the present value of minimum lease payments.   Variable lease and non-lease cost components are expensed as incurred and are primarily included in cost of sales on the accompanying consolidated statement of operations.

Operating lease payments are recognized as an expense in the consolidated statements of operations on a straight-line basis over the lease term, including future option periods the Company reasonably expects to exercise, whereby an equal amount of rent expense is attributed to each period during the term of the lease, regardless of when actual payments are made.  This generally results in rent expense in excess of cash payments during the early years of a lease and rent expense less than cash payments in later years.  The difference between rent expense recognized and actual rental payments is typically represented as the spread between the ROU asset and lease liability.

We recognize a ROU asset and a lease liability at the lease commencement date.  Our leases may include options to extend or terminate the lease, which will be reflected in the calculation of the lease liability and corresponding ROU asset when it is reasonably certain that we will exercise that option. We do not recognize ROU assets and lease liabilities for short-term leases that have an initial lease term of 12 months or less.  We recognize the lease payments associated with short-term leases as an expense on a straight-line basis over the lease term.

The lease liability is initially measured as the present value of the unpaid lease payments as of the lease commencement date. The lease liability is discounted based on our IBR at the time of modification for an existing lease or at the time of lease commencement for new leases. Our IBR includes significant assumptions regarding our secured borrowing rates obtained on equipment note issuances and adjustments for differences in the remaining lease term, underlying assets and market conditions for companies with similar credit qualities as well as interest rate index fluctuations. The ROU asset is initially measured at cost, which comprises the initial amount of the lease liability adjusted for lease payments made at or before the lease commencement date, plus any initial direct costs incurred less any lease incentives received.  The ROU asset is subsequently measured throughout the lease term as the carrying amount of the lease liability, plus initial direct costs, plus (minus) any prepaid (accrued) lease payments, less the unamortized balance of lease incentives received.  Lease expense for lease payments is recognized on a straight-line basis over the lease term.  Certain vehicle lease agreements have residual value guarantees at the end of the lease which require us to return the asset with a specified percentage of the original or other calculated value.

Recently Adopted and Issued Accounting Pronouncements

Recently Adopted Accounting Pronouncements

Credit Losses. In June 2016, the FASB issued ASU 2016-13, “Financial Instruments – Credit Losses (Topic 326), Measurement of Credit Losses on Financial Instruments,” which replaces the current incurred loss methodology with an expected loss methodology, referred to as the current expected credit loss (CECL) methodology. We adopted Topic 326 on January 1, 2020, using the modified retrospective method, which resulted in a $3.2 million cumulative-effect adjustment recorded through retained earnings at the beginning of 2020.

The following table summarizes additional ASUs which were adopted in fiscal 2020, but did not have a material impact on our accounting policies or our consolidated financial statements and related disclosures:



ASU 2017-04

Simplifying the Test for Goodwill Impairment

ASU 2018-13

Disclosure Framework - Changes to the Disclosure Requirements for Fair Value Measurement

Recently Issued Accounting Pronouncements Not Yet Adopted

In December 2019, the FASB issued ASU 2019-12, “Simplifying the Accounting for Income Taxes”.  This standard simplifies the accounting for income taxes by removing certain exceptions to the general principles included in current guidance, as well as improving consistent application of and simplifying GAAP for other areas by clarifying and amending existing guidance. We adopted this standard on January 1, 2021, using the modified retrospective method related to franchise taxes. There was no cumulative-effect adjustment required to be recorded as of the beginning of 2021.