Category Archives: News

Improve your Multi-Family development process, construct the right mixed complex project for your land, and manage your construction effectively. 

As a multi-family home builder, you understand the extra amount of back-office technology, time and resources needed to bring a multi-family production to market. Whether it is a high-rise condominium or a community of town-homes, managing all aspects of the production is critical to attracting modern buyers to your multi-family project and will ultimately allow you to offer a high-quality condo or unit at a reasonable price.

Research Your Land Options & Maximize Your Project Construction Potential

The building process begins with land development. Due to the increased complexity of bringing a multi-family complex to market, homebuilders should always compare various plots of land prior to the purchase. Factors to consider include the location of the community, its surroundings, and which possible project styles can be developed with the unique attributes of each plot of land.

Homebuilders should be looking at the various ways product design can be optimized to improve the quality of life for homeowners in addition to how profitable the project can be when the community goes up for sale. For example, if you have a land option by a body of water with a nice view, consider optimizing your project design to include a high-rise portion, this way, you can offer a premium value add-on to the high-rise suites by charging extra for the units with a view. If you are considering a rural area, perhaps offering townhomes to allow for more living space for prospective buyers that are families might be a better option since families tend to enjoy more space.

Don’t leave the process of planning the development to chance, you should always leverage tools that allow you to compare building scenarios based on the types of land available against the profitability of the construction type. This ensures that you are purchasing the right land for your business goal, creating an estimate of which construction project is possible on the land, and forecasting how profitable the project will be if you acquire the land.

Make Informed Decisions Through Integrated Accounting

Your accounting team should have clear oversight. Your accounting division should become preemptive regarding company purchasing & costs of resource acquisition and construction. They should be able to forecast profits from the sales opportunities existing in the company pipeline as well as project profits from upgrade offerings sold in your multi-family projects.

All your business functions and processes should tie back into your accounting department. When this process shift occurs, decision makers at your building firm will begin to understand clearly each of their department success metrics, and how to be more efficient to ensure the company meets pre-determined goals. Sales teams will become results driven, your construction team will become time sensitive, and your purchasing team can become more strategic about how they acquire assets for construction. Ultimately, this efficiency in your build process will allow you to offer the suite or unit at a reasonable price while securing your forecasted profit.

Establish a Dynamic and Profitable Operation at your Multi-Family Sales Centers

Making the needed sales records and upgrade revenue is critical to the bottom line for the multi-family project profitability. But multi-family homebuyers often expect special amenities, this is especially true with high-rise productions where homebuyers are still investing large sums in their mortgages for a shared community. Also, décor studio management is a trending must for builders and it could potentially become complicated as the number of units increases in multi-family production in comparison to a single-family project.

Implementing a tight-knit process amongst your sales and décor studio staff is a critical element to the multi-family puzzle. Visiting sales centers has become a ritual for the modern home buyer. Prospects expect to be in awe when they enter a sales center and they want to see the various unit options, amenities and upgrades that are available. Implementing a sales and décor management solution that allows homeowners to create their dream space while still allowing you, the builder, to commit to those upgrades in your build cycle, is key. Your sales and décor management software should digitize the sales an upgrade selections process. It should allow builders and their homebuyers to focus on the experience of enjoying the product offering inside and out instead of being too overworked with paperwork and product catalogues.

To hear a panel of design studio experts and homebuilders discuss décor center management technology trends, watch “The All NEW Design Studio Experience” recording.

Select a system that showcases all your available suites/units for sale in real time, your system should allow your décor agents to link upgrade packages to a homebuyer’s contract and seamlessly drive that data from the sales center to the job site where construction has every detail needed to deliver these upgrades. After all, if there is one thing that should be autonomous and accurate is the process between sales to construction.

Manage More Deficiency Requests while Optimizing Your Customer Experience

If you are a home builder considering the production of a multi-family project, be aware that you will be catering to more homebuyers since you would be building upwards as well as outwards. How can home builders manage deficiencies or warranty requests in large amounts? The secret can be found in homeowner portal technology, perfect for multi-family projects and popular amongst condominium property managers. These portals allow homeowners to self-serve their warranty needs directly with the product vendor – and can issue claims through the portal anytime, anywhere via mobile. This eliminates long hours on the phone and standardizes the way builders manage and fix homeowner deficiencies. After all, a modern multi-family project needs all the smart features and technology that will enhance your home quality and still prove to be helpful in managing large amounts of warranty requests the modern way.

The Verdict

If you are interested in an integrated solution for your next multi-family project, feel free to contact us. Learn more about NEWSTAR’s capabilities for multi-family productions. Whether you are an existing Constellation customer or a homebuilder, find out how NEWSTAR can support multi-family builders in various building functions.

 

Source – The Many faces of Multi-Family

Posted in Best Practices, Blog, Builder Resources, Conasys, Constellation CRM, Customer Service, Field Scheduling, LandDev, News, NEWSTAR, OnLocation, The Constellation Team | Tagged | Leave a comment

Challenges and opportunities for builders and developers in the state of Texas – where technology stands in North America’s biggest housing market

The Texas Opportunity

Six of the top 10 most desirable cities for homeowners are in the great state of Texas. These cities have growing home values, growing population, and shrinking unemployment and crime rates. Houston, for instance, is the 4th largest city in the United States and is a dynamic, growing city, rich in culture and diversity – and the home of our next Smart Strategies for Builders Seminar Series.

Here are some of the unique challenges affecting Texas builders and developers:

Challenges and Opportunities for Texas Builders in 2018

Demand for new homes is high while labor is hard to find – Demand is high, which means Texas home builders can expect higher margins as homeowners are willing to outbid their neighbors, but this too comes at a cost since skilled tradespeople are now a hot commodity. Add in the effects of Hurricane Harvey, which has pitched homebuilders against renovators in the competition for skilled labor.

The opportunity: be the builder that trades WANT to work with. Communicate more effectively with your trade partners, establishing a culture of trust and accountability. Pay trades immediately upon completion of work. Make it easy for trades to schedule their time – by offering real-time schedules on their mobile AND notifications in their inbox when important changes affect their timeline. Keep job sites clean – the trades have to work there all day!

The Texas market is getting crowded – The price tags on homes are increasing, the population and demand are growing, and the cost of building and acquiring land is also increasing. Builders from across the country are taking notice.

For successful land acquisition strategies, try “Top 3 Secrets to Land Acquisition for Home Builders”.

The opportunity: be the builder that customers WANT to buy from. Stand out from other builders by offering clients some customization in their homes without sacrificing your workflows with automated design studios. Out-compete your competition with homeowner care platforms that track, monitor, and increase referrals by creating happy customers who will say great things about you. When demand is high, you can be certain that homeowners are considering all their builder options. Lastly, ensure you have an industry standard accounting system dedicated to builders. Efficient budgeting and financial decision making can speed up build times allowing you to scale into different local Texas markets.

How to bring it all together – In a booming yet expensive market, customers are interested in purchasing homes but how can you stay ahead by maximizing your company earnings? Bigger builders tend to focus on the bigger picture and strategy involved in choosing the right locations for new communities, how receptive homeowners are to the product, and ways they can add on to the product for a quality home. As quality lots become more expensive for builders, the price tag will increase on homes. This could have a feedback effect and increase the costs of all other resources critical to building.

The opportunity: Focus on resource procurement using accounting software that will ensure you are on a budget and on track for your established growth. But why stop there? Choose an integrated building solution for the whole package that can offer all your other departments and building functions more data that can impact your companies financial responsiveness. For example, during adverse building errors, your warranty department should have an integrated process that alerts your accountants and trades with the same information so all departments are accountable.

LIMITED TIME: Get 40 percent off the Texas Builder Panel
Use the discount code “Houston 40”, we have gathered housing market experts, a panel of big builders, and software specialists with years of experience in the building industry. This is your opportunity to thoroughly understand the Texas market and to learn about opportunities and top business strategies to meet the changing Texas market.

 

Event Details:
Rapid Growth, Hurricane Fallout, and Labor Shortages:
Navigating Your Company for Continued Success
April 19, 2018, | Houston, TX
Hotel ZAZA in Memorial City
Get Your Tickets Now

 

 

Sources

2017 Best Places to Buy a Forever Home | GoodCall.com

What Does TechLash Mean for Needed Change in Home Construction | John McManus BuilderOnline.com

 

 

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Toronto, ON (September 8th, 2016) – Constellation HomeBuilder Systems, provider of software solutions for the homebuilding industry, will host 200+ builders for their annual conference on November 14-16, 2016. Building Cities, Creating Connections will bring major home builders from across North America to the upscale J.W. Marriott hotel, a beautifully restored heritage property in downtown Chicago, Illinois.

With well over 50 software training sessions on the latest product updates, future roadmaps, networking events, user groups, and live demos of new software, builders will learn to maximize each area of their software, and to further streamline the flow of information between them. From analysts to CEOs, superintendents and managers, attendees can expect to come away with actionable insights and spend time with 200 of their peers – with similar experiences and solutions to share.

“Every day, we work with builders looking for new efficiencies in technologies and operations,” says Chris Graham, Vice President of Constellation HomeBuilder Systems. “We discuss new products and features, user training and adoption, and best practices, benchmarking and industry trends. Spending two days at the Constellation conference brings all of this together – with builders like you.”

The conference features Amazon.com #1 bestselling author Garrison Wynn, revealing the secret to how influence beats logic, and helping builders improve communication across departments. An expert in operational excellence and customer satisfaction, Charlie Scott will present best practices on how builders can impact buyer satisfaction throughout the build cycle and down the road. Charlie is well-known to the industry: as judge of the National Housing Quality Awards, an author and a contributing editor for Professional Builder Magazine, and Director of Woodland, O’Brien & Scott, recently acquired by Constellation HomeBuilder Systems.

Attendees will also see innovative products and services from Constellation’s partners and sponsors: DocuSign, G.1440, informXL and Progress will help builders keep ahead of the competition.

The Constellation HomeBuilder Systems annual customer conference has grown to become a primary industry event for builders. Seats are limited, and the conference is expected to sell out before the deadline of October 14. Register today!

 

About the event:

2016 Customer Conference: Building Cities, Creating Connections
Constellation HomeBuilder Systems
November 14-16 | Chicago, IL
JW Marriot Chicago

About Constellation HomeBuilder Systems:

Constellation HomeBuilder Systems builds software solutions for private and public production home builders, and efficient custom builders. Their innovative solutions empower builders with information, driving business objectives from website to warranty. Constellation HomeBuilder Systems is the home building software division of Constellation Software Inc., an international provider of market-leading software and services for specialized industries, and is traded publicly on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

For more information, please contact:

Elmira Abushayeva
Director of Marketing, Constellation HomeBuilder Systems
888-723-2222
eabushayeva@constellationhb.com

 

 

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TORONTO, Aug. 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ – Constellation HomeBuilder Systems, provider of software solutions for home builders and developers, has acquired Woodland, O’Brien & Scott, a Minneapolis-based company specializing in customer satisfaction and data analysis for the home building industry. With many customers in common, the Woodland, O’Brien & Scott team will be joining Constellation HomeBuilder Systems to provide customer insight expertise and expand the business services available to the industry.

The purchase of Woodland, O’Brien & Scott compliments Constellation HomeBuilder Systems‘ leading position in the North American residential construction market, and is particularly notable in the customer satisfaction space. “The addition of Woodland, O’Brien & Scott’s services to our suite of solutions will allow builders to analyze the data that really drives customer satisfaction across the entire homebuying, construction, and warranty process.” said Chris Graham, Vice President of Constellation HomeBuilder Systems. “Combined with our acquisition of Conasys Homeowner Care in 2014, Constellation HomeBuilder Systems can help builders increase homeowner satisfaction with better communication and convenient online resources. Now they can benchmark and demonstrate that improvement.”

“The alignment with Constellation HomeBuilder Systems will allow Woodland, O’Brien & Scott services to integrate with the most authoritative software in the market and further increase awareness and growth of our services,” said Charlie Scott, president of Woodland, O’Brien & Scott. “This acquisition will also provide a long-term home for Woodland, O’Brien & Scott’s staff and valued customers.”

Established in 1986, Woodland, O’Brien & Scott has become a trusted consultant for operational excellence, and considers over 100 premium builders to be long-term partners. The “Voice of the Customer” survey is considered an industry benchmark. Company founder Keith O’Brien, managing partner Charlie Scott, and the rest of the Woodland, O’Brien & Scott team will join the Constellation family. Charlie Scott will continue to be closely involved as Director with Constellation HomeBuilder Systems’ professional services team, bringing 25 years of experience in home building operations and managing Woodland, O’Brien & Scott since 2007. Charlie Scott is also a National Housing Quality Award judge and an author for Professional Builder magazine, bringing substantial operational expertise to the Constellation HomeBuilder Systems team and customers.

This acquisition, along with substantial new personnel and software investments, will significantly benefit current and future customers of Constellation HomeBuilder Systems and Woodland, O’Brien & Scott.

About Constellation HomeBuilder Systems:

Constellation HomeBuilder Systems builds software solutions for private and public production home builders, and efficient custom builders. Their innovative solutions empower builders with information, driving business objectives from website to warranty. Constellation HomeBuilder Systems continuously improves home construction software, and is committed to maximizing your return on technology investment. Constellation HomeBuilder Systems is the home building software division of Constellation Software Inc., an international provider of market-leading software and services for specialized industries, and is traded publicly on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

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Albi Homes, 2016 SAM Award Winner

We’re turning the spotlight on our customers this week, as the 2015/16 awards season comes to a close. With the 2016 Builder 100 list announced, the Housing Leadership Summit about to kick off, and associations from Florida to B.C. announcing their top prizes, this awards season did not disappoint. While we tip our hats to award-winning builders everywhere, we would like to take a moment to single out a few special prizes won by Constellation customers.

 

2016 CHBA National Awards for Housing Excellence

The Canadian Home Builders’ Association held it’s annual National Awards for Housing Excellence on May 6. The CHBA presented 33 awards this year, at its 73rd National Conference in Kelowna, BC. The prestigious awards recognize builders from across Canada, in categories from sales and marketing through custom renovations.

Albi Homes from Calgary received both the Design Excellence Award and the Marketing Excellence Award in a sweep of the two top awards given for cumulative results in the New Home Awards and Marketing Awards categories. Albi received four awards in total and 11 nominations in a highly competitive competition. Wow!

Congratulations to Albi Homes on this impressive double win — and see below for more honorable mentions from the CHBA Awards.

Read more about Albi’s win in The Calgary Herald.

 

2016 BILD Awards - Great Gulf Homes

2016 BILD Awards

The Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD) of the Greater Toronto Area held their annual BILD Awards on April 28. The GTA’s top builders, developers, communities, designs, and campaigns were honored in 47 categories from over 900 submissions.

Great Gulf Homes took home Home Builder of the Year for Low-Rise. The award is selected with input from surveys of new homeowners — happy customers are a true testament of quality construction and service. Many buyers plan to consider Great Gulf first when it comes time for their next purchase.

“We are very proud and excited to have been recognized with this award and want to congratulate and thank the entire Great Gulf team on our win for the Homebuilder of the Year Low-Rise. I would also like to thank recent new home buyers for their trust and confidence in our ability to provide them with well-built, architecturally well-designed homes,” said Christopher Wein, President Great Gulf. “This is the third time in our company’s history that we have won this prestigious award and at a particularly fitting time as we celebrate our 40th anniversary.” [via The Star]

Congratulations, Great Gulf!

Read more from The Toronto Star, and click here for more photos from the BILD Awards.

 

Neal Communities, Professional Builder's 2015 Builder of the Year

Professional Builder 2015 Builder of the Year

Back in December, Professional Builder presented this prestigious and sought-after award to only one builder, who did not actively apply for the award, and whose innovative ideas and business results represent the best in home building.

“Our consistent goal is to combine the discipline, efficiency, skill and processes of a publicly owned homebuilder with the agility, customer care and attention to detail of a private builder,” says Pat Neal, founder and CEO of Neal Communities. “To be recognized for excellence with this respected award is a special honor that we are humbled and pleased to accept.” [via Neal Communities]

Neal Communities closed close to 1,000 homes in 2015, and was named #45 on the Builder 100 list. Congratulations to Neal Communities – winners of the “Academy Awards” of homebuilding!

Read more from Professional Builder.

 

Broadview Homes, Builder of the Year 2015 SAM Awards

2015 CHBA-UDI Calgary Region Association SAM Awards

Last month, the newly amalgamated Canadian Home Builders’ Association-Urban Development Institute Calgary Region presented their annual SAM Awards for sales and marketing excellence.

Broadview Homes, part of the Qualico Group of Companies, was named 2015 Builder of the Year as well as taking home the New Homebuyers Choice Award. The latter award is based on feedback from new buyers – who may have been influenced by Broadview’s commitment to pushing boundaries. “We keep taking chances,” says Broadview Homes vice-president Peter-John Woolf. “We sit down in our design room and if we see something that’s innovative and new, we get excited that maybe some aspects of it haven’t been done. That’s what we want to do for our show homes.” [via Calgary Herald]

Congratulations to Broadview Homes! Read more in The Calgary Herald.

 

Honorable Mentions from the 2015/16 Awards Season

Sterling Homes, winners of two print marketing awards at the CHBA National Awards for Housing Excellence
Branthaven Homes, winners for Multi-Family Homes in the under 1000 Square Foot category at the CHBA National Awards for Housing Excellence
SigNature Communities, winners of the Best Logo and Best Brochure, High-Rise at the BILD Awards
Geranium Homes, winners of a number of BILD Awards, including the People’s Choice Award
Empire Communities, winners of Best Sales video at the BILD Awards
Homes by Avi, Multi-Family Builder of the Year at the CHBA-UDI Calgary Region Association SAM Awards
Brookfield Residential, winners of multiple community and marketing awards at the CHBA-UDI Calgary Region Association SAM Awards
Hopewell Residential, winners of the Show Home Parade of the Year at the CHBA-UDI Calgary Region Association SAM Awards

 

Credits:
http://www.chba.ca/about/news-pubs.aspx?id=119
http://calgaryherald.com/life/homes/new-homes/albi-homes-wins-top-national-awards-for-housing-marketing-excellence
http://www.bildgta.ca/media_releases_2016_detail.asp?id=1012
https://www.thestar.com/life/homes/2016/04/29/tridel-great-gulf-honoured-for-great-work.html
http://www.probuilder.com/2015-builder-year-neal-communities
http://www.nealcommunities.com/about/news-and-awards/news/2015/december/neal-communities-dubbed-builder-of-the-year/
http://www.chbacalgary.com/photo-gallery/60546-sam-awards
http://calgaryherald.com/life/homes/new-homes/broadview
https://assets-production-webvanta-com.s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/000000/38/66/original/news-releases/2016/2015%20SAM%20-%20Winner%20Press%20Release%20SG%20FINAL%20with%20List.pdf

 

Photo credits:
Albi Homes (Facebook)
BILD (Facebook)
Neal Communities
The Calgary Herald

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