Our Blog

Share:

May 18 2021

Executive Q&A: The Strategy and Technology that led Dream Finders Homes to the NASDAQ

Get the answers directly from Doug Moran, Chief Operation Officer at Dream Finders Homes. In a conversation with Bob Swainhart from their technology partners at Constellation HomeBuilder Systems, get insights on Dream Finders Homes’ growth, scaling, data management, Jacksonville Jaguars partnership and more!

Bob Swainhart, General Manager, Enterprise Solutions at Constellation HomeBuilder Systems: Doug, I remember visiting your office in 2015 shortly after you had been hired. We were working together to ensure that Dream Finders Homes could scale to 500+ homes per year while maximizing the value of your technology platform. Did you envision transforming from that point, to an expanded regional builder, to a publicly traded company?

Doug Moran, Chief Operating Officer at Dream Finders Homes: Bob, great to visit with you again. Back in the early days with the company, I certainly felt confident in our product, land positions and the team we were building that we could continue to grow and expand. We took the approach to concentrate on the demographics and the relationships we built over the years to find the right locations to expand.

Bob: What variables did you see in the market that gave you and the leadership team the confidence to expand at this level?

Doug: Our approach to expansion was based on reviewing the economic data and customer demographics in each market. As well as reviewing the competition in the markets. We believed that with our product, which focuses on first-time and first-time move-up buyers along with a superior sales process, we could be very successful.

Bob: As you’ve grown, how does it change your mindset in how you manage the business day-to-day? What’s more important now than ever?

Doug: The challenges vary across all our markets but being proactive to address them as soon as they arise has become increasingly important. Good communication from our division leaders has been key along with reliable reporting systems.

Bob: The further you are from the divisions, the more important it is that you have good technology, access to mission-critical data in real time, and perhaps, most importantly, confidence in the data you are looking at. As an organization, what processes have you implemented to ensure effective user adoption and confidence in the quality of your data?

Doug: We have now completed three acquisitions. As we have worked on diligence with each of them, the migration to the NEWSTAR system has been a significant consideration. For us, it was important to minimize the time we operated on multiple platforms, so we took a methodical approach to make sure we got everyone on the same system as soon as possible. This allowed us to compare costs in the same format, operational reporting consistency, and to cross train to support employees that were new to the system. For all our divisions, we have ongoing training for all functional areas. We also have an open dialogue for feedback from our divisions about what tools they need to manage their business better.

Bob: COVID-19 has changed the technology landscape for the homebuilding industry. How has your digital footprint changed and now that the “cat is out of the bag”, do you see technology playing a bigger role in the homebuying process going forward?

Doug: We have expanded our online presence and have provided additional opportunities for buyers to “buy from home” via virtual appointments. We are continuing to enhance our online presence and provide our customers a great online experience.

Bob: On a recent bike ride, I met an investor of yours and he mentioned what you are doing with the Jacksonville Jaguars. He said you’ve built a house next to the stadium and use it to host events and more. How is that working out for you and what does that look like logistically? It sounds fun!

Doug: That’s true! This is now our second model we have built at the stadium through our partnership with the Jaguars. We utilize the home to host events and bring fans through to see our home. After a few years, the home is donated to a deserving veteran. We learned a lot after the first house and invested significantly in the engineering of the second home to allow it to be disassembled and relocated to its new location.

Bob: And finally, what’s the plan going forward for Dream Finders – what are the areas of focus for the rest of 2021 and going into 2022?

Doug: Dream Finders is focused on delivering on our promise to our customers, growing our employees and the business. We have new shareholders that we want to provide value to as well.

Constellation HomeBuilder Systems is proud to partner with Dream Finders Homes as they continue to reach new heights. As a leading software & services provider to builders, developers and trades, Constellation is dedicated to the homebuilding industry, its customers, and to helping homebuilders achieve their goals no matter if you build 10 or 10,000 homes. Constellation powers nearly half of the top 200 builders in the United States. To learn more about the systems supporting Dream Finders Homes and many other incredible builders, please visit ConstellationHB.com.

Source: Builder Online Magazine

Recent blog posts

    October 5 2021

    How to make the most of the Build Smarter 2021 Virtual Conference

     

    Get a front-row seat at the upcoming Build Smarter Conference, from November 15th to 18th and see the new challenges and strategies in the building industry. In this four-day virtual conference, Constellation is bringing together leading veterans and fresh faces from all around the continent to share their knowledge, answer questions, and hash out contested approaches to the latest obstacles.

    The benefits of Build Smarter 2021

     

    Truly Virtual

    This year's conference is completely virtual, allowing you flexibility, accessibility, and networking bonuses impossible with onsite conferences. It's also free to attend. We'll showcase our home base of Toronto while guiding this diverse group of professionals to collectively tackle the current challenges and changes.

     

    1-1 Tech Lab Meetings

    Make the most out of sessions, and our 1-1 Tech lab meetings, all from the comfort of your home or office. This virtual space provides the perfect platform for intimate connections and strategizing. It's even the premier space to showcase the latest tech. We're offering more than 70 hands-on training sessions that cover the newest Constellation products. Learn ERP with NEWSTAR, integrated construction management with BuildTopia, workflow automation with LandDev, and so much more.

     

    Industry Trends

    We all know that the industry changes rapidly, but the global pandemic accelerated the evolution at a rapid pace. You won't want to miss the chance to speak directly with expert panelists, soak up the latest market research trends, and even scope out the competition. Whether you work in construction, marketing, or development, the conference is designed to help guide your team towards success in a shifting landscape.

     

    What You Can Truly Learn From the Experts

    Our mission is to empower you with information that simplifies the building process and maximizes your return on investment. This event is an homage to the dissemination of

    knowledge. A place where you'll be provided innovative solutions that drive business objectives and bring about clarity in your projects. By the end of this conference, attendees will gain new insights into everything from land development to customer success strategies.

     

    Celebrate Success and Excellence with H.O.M.E Awards

    We’re also welcoming the 11th Annual HOME-Owner Mark of Excellence Awards Gala to the Build Smarter Conference this year. The H.O.M.E. Awards symbolize excellence in the homeownership experience. Customers and clients themselves vote on award recipients through our CustomerInsight management software. You won’t want to miss this evening dedicated to celebrating what we all do best—stellar customer service.

     

    Registration is Now open

    Don’t miss out on one of the most important educational and social events our industry has to offer. While Constellation HomeBuilder Systems is pleased to offer this conference completely free, customers would want to register early to secure your coveted spot. Registration is now open click here to register to here to register today and save your seat.

    Read more >

    September 28 2021

    5 Straightforward Improvements Construction Companies (Really) Need Now

     

    The real estate market is experiencing a boom nationwide with inventory in the 50 largest U.S. metro areas down by 51% and homes spending an average of 20 fewer days on the market in April 2021 over April 2020, according to Realtor.com®. In nearly every market I visit, I hear stories about how low – or even non-existent – the resale market is, so new construction is often the only game in town for buyers that need to make a life change. Residential construction has been under-supplied for years, and it will take years for us to build enough inventory to meet natural demand.

    While there is a huge opportunity right now, lead times for nearly all building components are on extended time frames. Most of the industry is adapting by shortening buyer change periods and placing orders well in advance, but you can ease the strain further with excellent communication, creative thinking, and by streamlining business processes.

    Here are five business improvements every builder should consider:

     

    1. Keep in regular communication with trade partners and buyers.

    You can’t sit back and wait to hear from your trade partners during a shortage. Stay in constant communication, so they can keep you notified of current timelines and so you can notify them of your needs. Share your regional starts schedules and preliminary purchase orders at the time of contract to give as much time as possible. By implementing these practices proactively, you can limit exposure to uncertainty around lumber and appliances.

    Buyers are fully informed on the frenzy that is occurring in new construction and understands the implication. Be candid and accurate in the delivery dates you quote, and buyers will understand. Many builders are offering creative solutions, too. For example, some builders are installing temporary loaner appliances to avoid delaying closings.

    “Be candid and accurate in the delivery dates you quote, and buyers will understand.”

     

    1. Join a network.

    Builders with significant buying power with manufacturers and trade partners are receiving priority treatment. If you are a smaller builder, seek out opportunities that increase your buying power by joining a network of other builders working in similar spaces. Most markets have established buying groups that charge an initiation fee and then retain a portion of manufacturer rebates to generate revenue for the administrator of the group. Franchising is also a great opportunity to increase buying power, as franchisees are able to consolidate the buying power of the franchisees to negotiate preferred supplier pricing and rebate programs that go directly to the owners of each franchise.


    1. Standardize your product line.

    Builders that have standardized floor plans and specifications across their plan collection are more insulated from the materials issues. Settle on a handful of window models across your entire portfolio. Work with your engineer to provide consistency in your construction drawings so that you are ordering only the most common types of engineered wood. Simplify your floor plans so that framers can work through your jobs quickly, instead of designing odd corners or exterior details. Too often, builders don’t view their job sites as a manufacturing facility and don’t appreciate the need for trade partners to see consistency from house to house.

     

    1. Raise prices cautiously.

    With interest rates persisting at such low levels, buyers are able to absorb higher prices to cover the cost increases you are facing. For example, we have raised prices several times in the last six months while still seeing record sales. Each of these increases, though, was moderate and just covered our cost increases. Builders should not think the price ceiling is unlimited and, instead, work on modest increases to maintain desired margins.

    While these supply chain issues and inflation pressures are certainly affecting smaller builders more than larger builders, all builders are dealing with it to some degree. These concerns will likely last into 2022, so there is time to make the necessary adjustments. With demand being so strong – and expected to continue – the need to build collective buying power and standardize the offering is a long-term discipline that will reap benefits for the long term.

     

    1. Streamline your processes through fully integrated business software.

    From the construction site to your office, construction management systems help facilitate good communication, reliable scheduling, and effective budgeting. While hiccups are inevitable, cloud-based software can minimize errors and delays. Automation empowers builders, customers, and trade partners at every stage of the building process, creating positive experiences across all collaborating parties.

    Several of Epcon’s Franchise Builders use Constellation HomeBuilder System’s user-friendly construction management platform to manage their projects towards timely deliveries that are within budget. Systems such as theirs streamline and optimize business processes through integrated accounting practices, automated workflows, and a centralized portal where customers can access information. The entire production pipeline is managed from start to end, with financial projections, customizable reports, and clear analytics. Empowering your team with a fully integrated business management tool will reap benefits for years and give you an edge over many of your competitors in the highly fragmented homebuilding industry.

     

    Disclaimer: The offer of a franchise can only be made through the delivery of a Franchise Disclosure Document. Certain jurisdictions require registration prior to the offer or sale of a franchise. We do not offer franchises in jurisdictions where we are not registered (or exempt from registration). Epcon Communities Franchising, Inc. 500 Stonehenge Parkway, Dublin, Ohio 43017. Minnesota Franchise Registration No. F-3531.

    Read more >

    May 18 2021

    Executive Q&A: The Strategy and Technology that led Dream Finders Homes to the NASDAQ

    Get the answers directly from Doug Moran, Chief Operation Officer at Dream Finders Homes. In a conversation with Bob Swainhart from their technology partners at Constellation HomeBuilder Systems, get insights on Dream Finders Homes’ growth, scaling, data management, Jacksonville Jaguars partnership and more!

    Bob Swainhart, General Manager, Enterprise Solutions at Constellation HomeBuilder Systems: Doug, I remember visiting your office in 2015 shortly after you had been hired. We were working together to ensure that Dream Finders Homes could scale to 500+ homes per year while maximizing the value of your technology platform. Did you envision transforming from that point, to an expanded regional builder, to a publicly traded company?

    Doug Moran, Chief Operating Officer at Dream Finders Homes: Bob, great to visit with you again. Back in the early days with the company, I certainly felt confident in our product, land positions and the team we were building that we could continue to grow and expand. We took the approach to concentrate on the demographics and the relationships we built over the years to find the right locations to expand.

    Bob: What variables did you see in the market that gave you and the leadership team the confidence to expand at this level?

    Doug: Our approach to expansion was based on reviewing the economic data and customer demographics in each market. As well as reviewing the competition in the markets. We believed that with our product, which focuses on first-time and first-time move-up buyers along with a superior sales process, we could be very successful.

    Bob: As you’ve grown, how does it change your mindset in how you manage the business day-to-day? What’s more important now than ever?

    Doug: The challenges vary across all our markets but being proactive to address them as soon as they arise has become increasingly important. Good communication from our division leaders has been key along with reliable reporting systems.

    Bob: The further you are from the divisions, the more important it is that you have good technology, access to mission-critical data in real time, and perhaps, most importantly, confidence in the data you are looking at. As an organization, what processes have you implemented to ensure effective user adoption and confidence in the quality of your data?

    Doug: We have now completed three acquisitions. As we have worked on diligence with each of them, the migration to the NEWSTAR system has been a significant consideration. For us, it was important to minimize the time we operated on multiple platforms, so we took a methodical approach to make sure we got everyone on the same system as soon as possible. This allowed us to compare costs in the same format, operational reporting consistency, and to cross train to support employees that were new to the system. For all our divisions, we have ongoing training for all functional areas. We also have an open dialogue for feedback from our divisions about what tools they need to manage their business better.

    Bob: COVID-19 has changed the technology landscape for the homebuilding industry. How has your digital footprint changed and now that the “cat is out of the bag”, do you see technology playing a bigger role in the homebuying process going forward?

    Doug: We have expanded our online presence and have provided additional opportunities for buyers to “buy from home” via virtual appointments. We are continuing to enhance our online presence and provide our customers a great online experience.

    Bob: On a recent bike ride, I met an investor of yours and he mentioned what you are doing with the Jacksonville Jaguars. He said you’ve built a house next to the stadium and use it to host events and more. How is that working out for you and what does that look like logistically? It sounds fun!

    Doug: That’s true! This is now our second model we have built at the stadium through our partnership with the Jaguars. We utilize the home to host events and bring fans through to see our home. After a few years, the home is donated to a deserving veteran. We learned a lot after the first house and invested significantly in the engineering of the second home to allow it to be disassembled and relocated to its new location.

    Bob: And finally, what’s the plan going forward for Dream Finders – what are the areas of focus for the rest of 2021 and going into 2022?

    Doug: Dream Finders is focused on delivering on our promise to our customers, growing our employees and the business. We have new shareholders that we want to provide value to as well.

    Constellation HomeBuilder Systems is proud to partner with Dream Finders Homes as they continue to reach new heights. As a leading software & services provider to builders, developers and trades, Constellation is dedicated to the homebuilding industry, its customers, and to helping homebuilders achieve their goals no matter if you build 10 or 10,000 homes. Constellation powers nearly half of the top 200 builders in the United States. To learn more about the systems supporting Dream Finders Homes and many other incredible builders, please visit ConstellationHB.com.

    Source: Builder Online Magazine

    Read more >

    April 14 2021

    Reasons why a Homebuilding Management Software is the most powerful tool in your toolbox than a Point Solution

     

    Homebuilder Management Software is a tool designed to improve productivity, enhance efficiencies, and streamline operations for a residential construction company. It is so much more than a sales system or an accounting system or a home production system: the true value of the software is in linking all these business functions together.

    What is a Homebuilder Management software not?

     

    • A Standalone Software System
      Homebuilder Management Software is more than just a single software system such as estimating, project management, or warranty management. While these systems offer software to complete a specific task, or set of tasks, they lack integration with the other functional business areas.

    • A System that only benefits one department
      While certain departments may benefit from Homebuilder Management Software more than others, the goal is to improve the business overall. A more streamlined and efficient business tends to increase productivity and profit, as well as improve employee and customer satisfaction.

    • A Short-term solution
      Homebuilder Management Software is not something you buy or use as needed, rather it is a complete solution that becomes the lifeline of your business. With the ability to automate and integrate the functional areas of any residential construction business, Homebuilder Management Software quickly becomes a solution that is heavily relied upon.

     

    homebuilding-software-vs-point-solutions

     

    Benefits of Homebuilder Management Software

    • One Dashboards, 360-Degree View
      All pertinent information, including all billings, costing, labor, materials, committed costs, change orders, purchase orders and profitability is displayed in a single view. Drill down on each item to find and correct anomalies quickly and efficiently.

    • Integrate Back Office and Field Personnel
      With fully integrated mobile and document management solutions, superintendents, trades and vendors can perform complex tasks with ease, including schedule changes, invoices and purchase orders.

    • Report Up-Down and Side-to-Side
      Measure the business effectively by reporting from the individual lot level to the community, division, and company level, including multi-company and joint ventures, and automated bank reporting for loan draws.

    • Single Version of Truth
      Everyone is aligned across the business and has access to the same information. Every number entered into the software reconciles and is the same across all functional areas of the business from accounting to sales to project management.

    • Complete Project Life-cycle Management
      From the beginning of project, manage estimating, scheduling and purchasing. Workflow and document management enables capturing all completed activities, tasks, reviews and approvals, compiling real-time actual to estimate reporting, ensuring projects are completed on time and on budget.

     

    Let Constellation help you chose the homebuilder management software solution that is right for your business

    These are just a few examples of the benefits of adopting modern homebuilding software and services, and how it can help you simply the entire home buying process. By utilizing Constellation HomeBuilder Systems Software and Services Ecosystem you’ll ensure you’re always an industry leader.  

    If you want to get started with fully integrated systems and standalone solutions for builders, vendors, developers, and buyers, schedule a demo now.

    Read more >

    March 19 2021

    How Digital Technology Helped Home Builders During the Pandemic

     

    If you know these proverbs about change: “If it isn’t broke don’t fix it”, “Why change something that’s always worked?”, “Don’t improve what’s efficient.” – the list goes on and on.

    Other than the Homebuilding industry can you name an industry that adapted to technology more slowly?

    What happens when industries don’t change? They became obsolete.

    Still it nearly took a global pandemic for the homebuilding industry to go digital!

     

    Digital trends for home builders

    Pre pandemic contractors or homebuilders that felt a little hesitant about adopting or fully embracing new technology have had to adapt fast. They now agree they are seeing the benefits.

    Saying that construction software and cloud-based platforms have revolutionized the entire construction process during the pandemic is an understatement.

    • Communication has been streamlined: Cloud-based software houses all communications, proposals, CRM’s, and more in one single location.

    • Cost control and budgets are better managed: Utilizing construction software ensures home builders meet their target budget.

    • Internal team communication has never been easier – whether you’re a trade, vendor, a home builder or in corporate management, you’re able to get valuable insight on all your current projects in real-time.

    Even so it almost took a global pandemic for the homebuilding industry to quickly learn how the right software makes the difference.

     

    Keeping an eye on your ROI

    With so many changes in the last year it’s important to take a step back and assess your results.

    Growing companies need to optimize productivity, visibility, and collaboration in order to maximize revenue.

    Big Question: How do you know what platforms are providing you with the highest ROI?

    Through using online platforms that are built and track internal metrics, you can easily push operational efficiency throughout scheduling, estimating, and purchasing through to sales management and CRM’s and also include websites and digital marketing.

    Evaluating your tasks’ ROI’s helps you determine which practices and platforms work best for your company and which ones can be retired.

    Find out how our homebuilding software and solutions can provide you with the highest ROI

     

    How Technology Is Impacting The Home Buying Process

    If we’re already buying everything online, why should purchasing a home be any different? Since social distancing has become the new norm -- voluntary or not -- technology is more important than ever. Or is it?

    From virtual open houses to contactless home inspections and never-ending Zoom meetings, how we approach the home-buying process post-pandemic has changed. GONE are the days of opening and closing every door to ensure they don’t rub or squeak to knocking on neighbors’ doors for a friendly conversation during the due diligence phase and running our hands over every surface, checking for hidden repairs during our final inspection.

    Real estate is quickly becoming a digital asset.

    In the coming decade don’t be surprised if you see real estate sales taking place entirely online, iBuying growing in popularity or properties being sold for cryptocurrencies.

    Remember it wasn’t that long ago when real estate agents had to drive to get all the signatures. 

     

    Let Constellation help you bridge the gap between Homebuilding & Technology

    These are just a few examples of the benefits of adopting modern homebuilding software and services, monitoring platform ROI and how technology is impacting the home buying process. By utilizing Constellation HomeBuilder Systems Software and Services Ecosystem you’ll ensure you’re always an industry leader.  

    If you want to get started with fully integrated systems and standalone solutions for builders, vendors, developers and buyers, schedule a demo now.

    Read more >

    February 9 2021

    Explore the Future of Digital Homebuilding Solutions with Constellation at IBSx 2021

    The last year has been a challenging time for anyone working in the home building industry. Homebuilders have had to innovate quickly and take advantage of new technology to effectively meet the needs of their customers.

    With so many introductions, first meetings, design consultations, and closings happening virtually, builders must ensure that their online presence and virtual solutions are as welcoming and personable as the atmosphere in their offices and showrooms.

     All these changes have been challenging, especially since we’ve been separated from most of our colleagues and professional network for the last year. That’s why we’re so excited to announce that Constellation HomeBuilder Systems will be a Gold Sponsor of this year’s virtual International Builders’ Show, IBSx 2021

     

     Why We’re Excited for the All-Virtual IBSx 2021

    Although the Constellation team is saddened that we can’t gather in person, we’re thrilled at the opportunity to attend IBSx 2021 and showcase some of the solutions and technologies that have been critical to helping builders around the world adapt to the new virtual home building process.

    This is a fantastic opportunity to learn from experts, who can speak to the process of digitizing every aspect of a homebuilder’s business. In addition to these active learning opportunities, there will be live and interactive networking events, forums, and meet-ups, which offer attendees the chance to discuss relevant topics in the building industry with small groups of their peers.


    Constellation’s Solutions You Can Explore at IBSx 2021

    In addition to these educational and networking events, there will be many opportunities to explore a variety of Constellation’s solutions through live product demos conducted by our experts.

    These solutions include:

    NEWSTAR SalesXpress

    Make smarter, data-led decisions with SalesXpress, an innovative solution that allows builders to support their digitally savvy customers at every step of the purchasing journey. This sophisticated software allows builders to capture leads, create proposals, and even initiate sales directly from their website.

    CustomerInsight 

    Builders who want to impress customers need to offer a personalized experience. CustomerInsight helps to deliver the advanced analytics that are required to build meaningful relationships with customers. Don’t rely on surveys or metrics – CustomerInsight can help win referrals while simultaneously lowering margins and promotional costs.

    NHLS Distribution Engine

    This platform is dedicated exclusively to NEW homes. NHLS provides the listing hub and distribution portal builders need to connect with buyers across North America. NHLS can help you manage, aggregate, and distribute your listing information to multiple marketing channels, and then manage the leads coming back in.

    Design Studio Manager

    Design Studio Manager allows builders to offer a fully responsive design studio environment to customers shopping both online and in-person. The intuitive layout allows your staff to curate collections for each customer with the touch of a button, simplifying the sales experience.

    BuildTopia Reporting Dashboards

    Get a visual representation of your live data with BuildTopia Reporting Dashboards, a solution designed to give your team a range of valuable insights packaged together a slick, easy-to-use layout.

    Attend IBSx Free as a Guest of Constellation HomeBuilder Systems

    There are so many new solutions to explore, and it can be a challenge to find the time to learn each one in-depth. IBSx 2021 is a great opportunity to get an introduction to all of the innovative solutions offered by Constellation HomeBuilder Systems at our virtual booth.

    We’re excited to see all of our colleagues and friends at IBSx 2021 from February 9th to 12th. For a unique opportunity to attend as our guest, click here to register for a free expo-only pass.

     

    Read more >

    August 21 2019

    How Attending the Tech Lab at the Build Smarter 2019 Conference will Help to Streamline Your Team’s System and the Homebuyer Journey

    Almost 80% of customers expect consistency across departments when they’re interacting with a company, according to the 2019 State of the Connected Customer Report by Salesforce.

    Is your team hitting that expectation?

    According to this same report, 60% of customers see most companies as having siloed departments rather than one cohesive system.

    What does this tell us?

    Businesses who aren’t already using an ERP system that syncs across departments must innovate or they’ll get left behind. But what if you’re not sure how to use certain functions? Attending the Tech Lab at the Build Smarter 2019 Conference will help you out with that because it’s not just about having the software.

    It’s about knowing how to maximize efficiency so that every department is working as one big system.

    For example, if there’s a breakdown of information from the sales center to the purchasing department, the homebuyer isn’t going to have sympathy for you. This applies to all data that travels across departments. So, making sure that every department knows how to use the ERP efficiently is paramount.

    Homebuyers see that through the experience they’re going through starting from their first interaction with your company all the way to referral sales. Based on the same Salesforce report, 84% of customers say the experience they had with the company they bought from is just as important as its products or services. That’s 4% up from last year’s report.

    It’s safe to say that if your departments aren’t working together to create an exceptional experience for your homebuyer, then you should start thinking about it now.

    When you get a ticket to the Build Smarter 2019 Conference, you’ll be able to spend time at our Tech Lab to clarify information about features, clear up any confusions you had, and ask about functionalities you’d like to know more about. It would be like having a live product specialist at your side all day.

    The conference will be held on November 18-20th at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess Hotel in Scottsdale, Arizona where hundreds of North America’s most information-hungry builders will attend. Whether you’re in marketing, sales, estimating, purchasing, warranty, customer success, or leadership, this conference will help you be more efficient day-to-day.

    Read more >

    July 18 2019

    Top 5 Discoveries at the Build Smarter 2019 Conference

    Decoding Today’s Home Buyer, and So Much More.

    The Build Smarter 2019 Conference is just around the corner, kicking off on Nov. 18 in Scottsdale, Arizona. This year’s event will take place amidst a much more positive outlook than the industry experienced in the recent past. According to a report from Wells Fargo, “The outlook for residential construction in 2019 is improving versus late 2018, and there are sufficient tailwinds to carry the industry through any near-term economic turbulence.”

    That’s very good news. It also makes this an interesting time to be a builder. We’re entering a ‘now or never’ reality in which builders must adopt new ways to market, manage, and communicate – or risk getting left behind. Critically, they also find themselves catering to a whole new class of home buyers that are accustomed to convenience and personalization in the digital age.

    To that point, we’ve themed this year’s conference, The Expectation RevolutionExploring Building Trends, Technology, and Innovation for the Evolving Home Buyer, featuring an agenda packed with fresh content, education, and technical training. Here’s a taste of what’s to come, including five discoveries attendees can uncover at Build Smarter 2019.

    (Check out the full agenda and registration details at the Build Smarter Conference site)

    #1:  Buyer behavior is radically changing, and we’ve got the data to prove it.

    The building industry is experiencing an expectation revolution, driven by highly-discerning home buyers. It can be difficult to know when and how to adapt your business to keep pace. Understanding buyer expectations takes the right strategy and insights. In our keynote, Decoding Today’s Home Buyer, Mollie Carmichael, principal with Meyers Research, will join us to reveal the latest home buyer data to help you understand their evolving demographics, preferences, and expectations.

    (For more on 2019 Industry Predictions and Building Trends presented to you by Meyers Research, try our webinar, “2019 Industry Predictions and Building Trends”.

    #2:  Digital innovation has impacted the home shopping journey – just ask the buyers.

    According to a Builder Online article, millennials are set to finally enter the housing market in a very big way, stating, “aging millennials are set to close the headship rate gap with prior generations – likely driving steady long-term growth in residential new construction.”

    That’s one explanation for drastic changes in builder/buyer interactions – from the way buyers search for listings, to how they view homes, and how they prefer to interact before, during, and after the sale. The whole industry is undergoing a digital transformation urged by consumers that are digitally-savvy and always on-the-go. How do you respond?

    We’ve put together a variety of sessions to help builders tackle this trend from the inside out. In a live Q&A session during our Innovation Panel, attendees will hear from real-life home buyers, builders, and industry experts about how innovation has impacted their personal journey and experience.

    We’ll also present Social Media: 5 Tips from Builders,a how-to session on Maximizing Your Online Marketing and Listing Exposure, and bring in a design expert to talk about New Design Trends and Tools – packed with ideas to help you ride the digital wave, expand your online presence, and attract a steady stream of buyers to your listings.

    #3:  The market is unpredictable, but you can rise above it.

    As every builder understands, there are many factors that are beyond control. It can be difficult to know how to evolve in an unpredictable market. Luckily, builders have access to a secret weapon – and it lives right next door. Your customer is a powerful asset to sharing the insights you need.

    In our Live Builder Interview: Marketing & Sales Strategies to Win Home Buyers and Earn Trust Forever, a builder will share their strategies for attracting buyers in an often-unpredictable market, and how to build positive customer relationships throughout the process.

    We’ll continue the discussion in Best Ways to Earn Referrals and Transform Your Customer Experience, as well as our Builder Panel: Finding Your ‘Aha’ Moment from Customer Feedback. Guests will learn from our CustomerInsight expert how to acquire and translate customer feedback, and hear first-hand from builders how they walk alongside their homebuyers and use what they learned as a catalyst for process and business transformation.

    #4:  Trade management can either be a thorn in your side or a chance to excel.

    According to a recent NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Marketing Index survey, the availability of labor is the leading concern for builders in 2019. Issues with trade management have long plagued builders, often resulting in delayed closings, construction quality issues, and diminished customer trust. Builders must keep projects running smoothly to ensure they are prioritized by the most dependable trades, as well as proactively pinpoint quality concerns.

    This is an issue we’ll tackle in one of our Builder University sessions, The Top 3 Challenges of Trade Management. In this session, a builder will share what approaches they find most useful for fostering a positive builder/trade relationship, and talk about the best tools to use to improve trade communication and management.

    For effective methods to enhance your trade management, try “5 Keys to Effective Trade Management”.

    #5:  Relevant builders understand how to bridge the gap between construction and technology.

    From evolving expectations to digital disruption, we know the industry is rapidly changing. We don’t want you to simply survive, we want you to thrive. Our goal is to give you the power to build smarter, equipping you with the technology and data you need to remain agile to adapt and grow. Constellation’s solutions help you bridge the gap between technology and construction, and our Build Smarter Conference reflects this approach. Ultimately, we know you need hands-on training to get the most out of your technology investment. With a myriad of software training seminars, our tech lab, and product user groups, you’ll gain the best practices, tools, and technical know-how you need to improve and grow your business.

    To learn more about the Build Smarter 2019 Conference, read the press release, watch the video, or visit our conference registration site.  We hope to see you there!

    Resources:

    Navigating Volatility in the U.S. Residential New Construction Sector, © 2019 Wells Fargo Securities and L.E.K. Consulting

    Report: 2019 Will Be Good for New Home Building, February 19, 2019, BuilderOnline.com,  Builders: Materials in 2018, Labor in 2019, March 18, 2019, NAHB

    Chaluvadi, Ashok, Top Challenges for Builders: Materials in 2018, Labor in 2019, March 18, 2019, NAHB

    Read more >

    April 4 2019

    Top Strategies & Technologies for Multi-Family Home Builders

    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 home builder, find out how NEWSTAR can support multi-family builders in various building functions.

     

    Source – The Many faces of Multi-Family

    Read more >

Live Chat Person
Chat Now