Feb 05, 2016

Housing Trends

Finding Inspiration in Innovation

Design was the gold that was mined at January’s National Sales and Marketing Awards in Las Vegas during the International Builders Show (IBS). I had the privilege of hosting the ceremony, and during the show, I noticed that our industry is truly striving for new and better products and that innovation is being embraced. In fact, Gold Awards were earned by organizations in at least eight states and four countries (Canada, Mexico, Panama and the United States). Here are some takeaways from the proceedings:

Reinvention is rampant. The Master Planned Community of the Year went to The Cannery in Davis, California. The New Home Company’s first farm-to-table new home community in California offers a terrific mix of uses on the site of a former Hunt Wesson Plant with a focus on farming and bicycle transportation. From a product diversity standpoint, Toll Brothers has reinvented itself by successfully penetrating a wide variety of regional markets in the West, diverse consumer segments, outdoor living spaces and architectural design. This rebirth earned their Marbella at Hidden Canyon in Irvine, California the Gold Award for Detached Community of the Year. This community has captured a predominantly Asian buyer (from the local market and overseas) that have responded well to the showcase living spaces.

Source: www.livecannerydavis.com/#community


Source: www.tollbrothers.com

Connecting to the consumer and speaking their language pays off. East United Condos by Signature Communities in Toronto, Ontario, Canada has tapped into the zeitgeist of the 30-40 year old local population who identify with the culture of the dynamic and eclectic West End but who feel the high-rise development nearby is “soulless”. Combining cool living spaces in a 21-story building sitting on a six-story podium, East United earned five Gold Awards including their direct mail, signage and Presentation Center. The image below conjures up just a touch of the East United vibe.
East United Vibe

Source: www.thestar.com

It is more natural to highlight an authentic place than to create something from scratch. This was highlighted by the Gold Award that Tres Santos earned for Best Brochure for a Master Planned Community. While the new components of the community are still in the pre-development stages, the website messages focused on “The Here and Now,” highlighting the charming town of Tres Santos near Cabos San Lucas, Baja, Mexico. Images of pristine beaches, local farms, the historic town of Tres Santos and the existing ocean-oriented lifestyle conveys a reality that is in place (and has been for hundreds of years). The aforementioned Cannery tapped into a similar authenticity by embracing its agricultural history with the bike-oriented town of Davis.
Tres Santos Ocean
Tres Santos Town

Source: www.tressantosbaja.com

You don’t have to be big (or public) to be great. Ohio-based Schumacher Homes has mastered the art of ongoing engagement with their buyers. Schumacher’s business model offers “on your lot” construction in multiple states so their consumers may be spread far and wide. To best manage this challenge, they created an Email Campaign that continuously connects with their consumers over the sales and construction process. Along with the Gold for Best Email Campaign, they also earned a Gold Award for Best Builder Website. A few other builders to note and the diverse states in which they are located:

  • IdahoThe Oaks by Coleman Homes
    Best Sales Center
  • AlabamaBattles Trace at The Colony
    Best Architectural Design for a Single Family Home Priced $350,000-$500,000
  • ColoradoAlto at Midtown by Infinity Home Collection
    Best Architectural Design of a Single Family Detached Home Priced $500,000-$750,000
  • GeorgiaEdward Andrews Homes-Design Center
    Best Design Center

Our industry continues to evolve and as this year’s Nationals have shown, innovation is not limited by geography or the size of an organization.

Please contact me if we may be of service assisting you in finding new market and product opportunities to help elevate and inspire your operation.

Congratulations to all Silver and Gold Award winners!

Timothy P. Sullivan, Practice Leader – Advisory San Diego


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