TOP/BEST U.S. HOME BUILDERS

TOP/BEST U.S. HOME BUILDERS

1. Schumacher Homes

Overview

It is America’s largest custom home builder with an experience of around three decades in customized home building. Below is a summary of our key findings.

Selected Findings

  • Schumacher Homes designs customized homes for individuals and real estate companies. The company was founded in 1992 and is headquartered in Canton, Ohio. It is America’s largest custom home builder, with operations in 32 markets in 14 states across the country.
  • The company’s specialties include custom home building, on-your-lot building, home building, house plans, handicap-accessible design, multi-generational homes, new home construction, and floor plans.
  • The company is known for its high-quality work output. Its housing portfolio consists of 53 award-winning showcase homes. The company has received the National Housing Quality Award for excellence in construction standards and customer satisfaction.
  • It is also the recipient of the National Gold Winning Home of the Year and the National Gold Winning Best Digital Sales Tool/Use of Technology for its exclusive pricing system from the National Association of Home Builders.
  • The company’s most recent marketing effort has been centered around its Summer Sales Event, which ends in about 4 days. As per the offer messaging, the company is providing up to $20,000 in upgrades to its customers on their dream homes. The company has leveraged various marketing channels, including social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, as well as its website to promote the event.

Schumacher Homes: Perception

Schumacher Homes has been commended for its “beautiful” model homes and courteous staff. However, there have been complaints about the company’s inability to meet deadlines and its poor workmanship.
The customer perceptions of Schumacher Homes were gathered from customer reviews across Google Reviews, Better Business Bureau, Angies List and Yelp. To avoid any form of bias, reviews on Schumacher’s official website were not examined. While the research team scoured social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, no recent reviews about the company could be found on these platforms.

Showroom & Model Homes

  • There are a lot of positive reviews about Schumacher’s model homes and showroom. Customers appreciate the fact that these model homes can be viewed virtually.
  • Those who actually see its model homes in person claim they love it and describe it as clean and beautiful.
  • Its showroom is described as a spacious area that allows for an informative experience.

Staff

  • Customers commend Schumacher’s staff for being attentive and courteous.
  • Others mention that its sales professionals are top-notch and knowledgeable. At least two customers appreciated the fact that they were not bothered by the company’s sales team.
  • Its employees are also described as informative and professional.

Home Quality

  • Schumacher Homes has been praised by several customers for its high quality homes. It reportedly builds semi-custom homes tailored to each customer’s preference.
  • It is also known for its superior building materials.
  • A few customers have expressed their gratitude to Schumacher Homes for making their dream homes a reality.

Pain Points

  • A lot of complaints about Schumacher Homes have to do with their sub-par finished work. According to several customers, the equipment and materials the company uses do not last as long as expected.
  • There are a few customers who have expressed their disappointment in the company because they were promised a specific deadline or turnaround and had to wait much longer.
  • Several customers have also mentioned that Schumacher Homes is overpriced and not worth what it offers.
  • There have been several complaints about Schumacher’s workmanship. Some customers mentioned being frustrated that the home built for them by the company in no way resembles the model home they were showed.
  • Quite a lot of customers are not happy with the painting Schumacher does. Some stated that several corners in their homes were not painted, while others complained of cracked paint in their homes.
  • There are also a few complaints about Schumacher homes dishonoring the warranty it promises.

Schumacher Homes: SWOT

Introduction

Schumacher Homes, based in Canton, Ohio, is the largest custom home builder in the US, operating specifically within the single-family housing space. The well-known company has been recognized for leadership in their industry. Below is a SWOT analysis of the company including their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.

Strengths

  • The company has been recognized within the industry for their growth in size and profitability within the past five years, as well as their industry leadership.
  • At present, they are the largest custom home builder in the US.
  • The company has also won many awards within the space, including the National Housing Quality Award, and award given for “excellence in construction standards and customer satisfaction”.
  • They were also the 2019 recipient of the National Gold Winning Home of the Year an award granted by the National Association of Home Builders, as well as being granted the title of #1 Design Studio in America.
  • Their design centers are top of the line, and each of the 32 Schumacher Homes locations features a design center for their customers, which include full experience model homes and features.

Weaknesses

  • While they have an overall positive rating via the Better Business Bureau, the company has quite a few online consumer complaints and negative reviews.
  • These complaints primarily relate to issues with scheduling contracted services as well as warranty issues.
  • The company takes a traditional custom approach, which leaves them vulnerable to competition from companies now that offer customizable product built on land owned by the home buyer.
  • They also only offer services within 75 miles of their locations, which leaves quite a few US locations out of building range.

Opportunities

  • Given the company is regionally concentrated within 14 states, primarily in the US Midwest and Southern states, the company has the opportunity to continue growing through expansion into other regions.
  • Custom homes offer the ability to support homeowners that have been displaced by natural disasters such as floods and wild-fire.
  • Specifically, custom home builders like Schumacher are equipped with the ability to rebuild on lots, with newly updated protection codes and regulations to support insuring against future disaster, and add on features such as tempered windows, noncombustible wall services, and weather proofing.

Threats

  • One of the key challenges facing custom home builders like Schumacher Homes is design and budget misalignment, and their competitors offering to do a similar build for a lower price.
  • Semi-custom competitors like Kilbargerhomes and Wayne Homes may be able to offer an advantage through their less customized but more economical approach to customers focused on cost.
  • The impact of the coronavirus has also created vulnerability for custom home builders, as they face postponement of projects that may cause clients to cancel or compare options and go with an alternative builder.
  • Revenue growth for the Home Builder’s industry declined by 5.3% in 2020 as a whole, and potential builders may lack access to the disposable income and credit required to build in the next year.

Research Strategy

In order to provide a SWOT analysis of Schumacher homes including their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, we consulted industry experts, company PR reports, and other reliable business media sources.

2. America’s Home Place

Overview

America’s Home Place describes itself as an established company with over four decades of industry experience and the nation’s number-one “On-Your-Lot Custom Home Builder.” Additional information has been provided in column D of the attached spreadsheet.

Target Market

  • America’s Home Place reports that it operates in 12 states across the Eastern U.S. It also targets clients from all economic levels by designing and building homes in all budget categories. There was not much else found about the company’s target market despite searching through the company’s website as well as through the public domain for media reports, company communications, survey results, or third-party publications.
  • Customer reviews were also explored and examined in an effort to determine the demographic profiles of the reviewers. However, there were too little reviewer details provided to be able to determine much about the company’s customer profiles. Regardless, 23 of the first 50 reviewers were made by female names, and the rest were male (24) and company/non-specific names (3).

Stated Goals

  • According to a Building Consultant with America’s Home Place, it is the goal of the company’s leadership to provide a stress-free and comfortable home building experience for the client. There were no other sentiment by the company’s leadership regarding the company’s stated goals either in interviews or the company’s website. The company is privately-owned and does not provide financial statements.

Positioning Statements

  • While America’s Home Place does not make any direct comparison statements or references to its competitors, it describes itself as an established company with over four decades of industry experience and the nation’s number-one “On-Your-Lot Custom Home Builder.” It also states that it offers the “nation’s leading new home limited warranty,” and that its home warranty has maintained a reputation of trust and integrity. Additionally, the company says that it has “built thousands of homes for thousands of satisfied customers.”

Branding/Marketing Efforts

  • Based on its website, Twitter profile, and Facebook page, America’s Home Place’s recent marketing efforts seem to be focused on events such as open houses and seminars. The events are being promoted on its website and social media pages. The company states that the events are meant to enlighten potential home builders.
  • Although there were no recent commercials found despite searching through the public domain for reports by marketing-focused resources and media resources, as well as video-sharing sites such as iSpot.tv and YouTube, the company releases regular promotional videos on its YouTube channel. The videos are showcase the company’s products and expertise, as well as providing an opportunity for interacting with customers in real time (live videos). There was no specific messaging used by the company.

3. Wayne Homes

Overview

4. K Hovnanian

Overview

“K. Hovnanian Homes” is very well positioned in the real estate market in relation to its competitors. In 2019, the company’s revenue was estimated at $2 billion. More information is available in the attached spreadsheet.

  • K. Hovnanian is a US company founded in 1959 by Kevork S. Hovnanian with the purpose of building homes for all families. Since then, the company has offered diverse home styles and they have used excellent materials to meet the standards and expectations of their clients.
  • It has 1,868 employees and its revenue for 2019 has been estimated at $2 billion.

Products/Services

Competitive Advantage

  • For more than 60 years, since 1959, the company has succeeded in the real estate industry.
  • Hovnanian Enterprises Inc. also trades on the New York Stock Exchange what gives them financial strength.
  • The company ranks among the top ten homebuilding companies in the U.S.

Target Market

  • The company provides the clients with a simulator with charts that give them an insight into the benefits of buying instead of continuing renting.
  • The charts also show other concepts such as fees, taxes, and inflation among others.
  • Locations are in the U.S. in Arizona, California, Delaware, Florida, Illinois, Georgia, Maryland, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, Washington D. C., and West Virginia.
  • Examples of the simulator can be seen Home Equity vs Investmentand Monthly Payment Breakdown

Company’s Stated Goals

Positioning

  • Hovnanian’s philosophy is to make sure they build a house that meets every client’s desire.
  • Hovnanian’s revenue has been estimated at $2 billion.
  • Two of its main competitors, NVR and Brookfield Residential have informed their revenues at $7 billion and $363 million respectively.
  • According to reviews, we can say that in the minds of the consumers the company has impacted positively.
  • Homeowners have given the company an average rating of 4.4 stars.
  • They remarked Hovnanian’s beautiful floor plans, customer service, affordable upgrades, and skilled craftsmanship among others.
  • From a total of 991 reviews, 676 homeowners rated the company with 5 stars.

Branding Marketing

  • The company, together with its associates and business partners, donates $1 million to those affected by the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
  • Their message is always oriented to stop renting and become owners.

Campaigns

  • The company promotes its products and services on its website by showing videos to make a tour of different types of homes. The same videos are available on the YouTube channel, as can be seen here.

5. Diyanni Homes

Overview

Founded in 1979, Diyanni Homes is a family-owned, full-service residential custom home builder with operations throughout Ohio and Kentucky. The company has built more than 2,500 custom-made homes since its inception. More details regarding Diyanni Homes have been provided in column E of the attached spreadsheet.

  • With more than 40 years in the building and construction industry, Diyanni Homes has been leading in providing a clear and understandable building process that ultimately meets its clients’ needs. The company also claims to have the highest educated and best-trained workforce.
  • The company builds custom homes for customers in regions across Ohio, including Dayton, Delaware, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Columbus, Sandusky, and Cleveland. They also offer their services in regions across Louisville, Kentucky, specifically in Clark, Bullitt, Jefferson, Shelby, Henry, and Oldham counties.
  • Most of their clients are married couples with children and couples whose children have moved out and have decided to downsize to a home that is suitable for the two of them.
  • According to the company, their “customer focus and ability to deliver accessible and professional home building experience” is what sets them apart from other custom home builders in Kentucky and Ohio.
  • Since its inception, Diyanni Homes has been an innovator in the housing industry. As a result, they have won numerous awards, including the People’s Choice Award and the BIA Parade of Homes for several years.

6. Drees Homes

Overview

Dree Homes is a family-owned and operated company founded in 1928. The company’s head office is in Ft. Mitchell, Kentucky. Details of the company are in the project spreadsheet.

Drees Homes

  • Drees offers move-in ready homes and custom home building services to customers looking to buy new homes.
  • Knowledge, experience and expertise garnered over 90 years of operating in the industry are some key factors differentiating the company from its competitors.
  • The company targets first-time and move-up buyers looking for affordable or luxury homes.
  • Drees currently has over 25 active ads on Facebook showing off available houses, communities and interior design styles.
  • It serves customers in ten states, including Kentucky, Virginia, Ohio, and North Carolina.

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