DALLAS – Despite COVID-19, residential real estate sales remain strong due to virtual experiences, and experts believe this trend will continue after the pandemic ends. And Dallas continues to be one of the country's high-growth markets.
Two communities in the DFW metropolitan area, 114 homes in Gateway Parks in Forney, TX, and 104 homes in Creeks of Legacy in Celina, TX, mark the launch of the new line of Trendmaker Homes. With lower prices, these new designs also help solve affordability issues.
Sales and daily model home tours are ongoing. Customers also have a range of interactive online home shopping tools that they can use to experience the new homes before making an on-site or virtual appointment.
"We're excited to bring fresh, open-concept designs at affordable prices to this high-growth market," said Sean Ricks, president of Trendmaker Homes Dallas-Fort Worth. “We also focus intensely on improving the customer experience, starting with the visit to our website and throughout the journey with us. The houses in the Discovery Collection and the virtual reality tools we have developed are strategically designed to set them apart from the competition with a first-class lifestyle experience. They will be an important building block as we expand our business in one of the top housing markets in the country. "
With the grand openings of Gateway Parks and Creeks of Legacy, the Discovery Collection is unveiled, offering open-concept designs with flexibility at affordable prices. The Discovery Collection's unique VR tools are exclusive to Trendmaker Homes in Dallas-Fort Worth and offer a lifelike experience of viewing a model home. This VR experience has interactive features that customers can use to visualize a home by virtually making room and option selections and changing combinations of flooring, cabinets, countertops, backsplash and colors.
"The Discovery Collection contains design features designed to meet the needs of today's home buyers," said Peter Altuchow, vice president, community experience, Trendmaker Homes Dallas-Fort Worth. “With multiple floor plan options and design layouts, including flexible spaces that can be used as home offices, gyms, study rooms or playrooms, and a link to outdoor living with large covered patios and large sliding glass doors, the Discovery Collection offers a new way of life. The VR tools go one step further, allowing customers to explore design opportunities, inspire them, and simplify and guide them on their home buying journey. "
The Gateway Parks homes, located 30 minutes east of downtown Dallas, start at $ 200,000. These homes are designed to meet the growing demand in the Dallas Fort Worth market for premium first-time and first-time customers.
Creeks of Legacy is just a short drive from the high-growth cities of Frisco and Plano. Starting from the low $ 300,000, the new homes are located near future PGA headquarters and a 2,500-acre mixed-use community in Frisco that will add another omni-convention center to the area.
Ricks recently shared some insights into the DFW real estate market, the impact of COVID, and how home builders will address these issues.
GlobeSt.com: What's your outlook for the rest of the year for the Dallas-Fort Worth area?
Ricks: This year was anything but a normal sales cycle. The demand environment for new homes in DFW has been strong since May and I expect that strength will continue through the remainder of this year given the historically low interest rate environment and low inventory levels in general. I think consumers will continue to reassess their life situations as well as many of us have changed the way we live and how we think about our homes. I believe renters will consider owning a home and existing homeowners will seek homes that better suit their needs. I am also encouraged by the recovery in employment in the DFW area. Many people are gradually returning to the office and I continue to see headlines announcing new business relocations to the DFW space. I think we will continue to see strong employment growth in the region.
GlobeSt.com: What challenges do builders like Trendmaker Homes have to face?
Ricks: We face several headwinds going forward, including supply chain and lot supply restrictions that will ultimately affect affordability. The supply chain has struggled to keep up with increased demand, particularly due to the impact of COVID-19 on the production and availability of materials, which is driving costs up significantly. Lumber is probably the best-documented category, with cost increases of $ 15,000 to $ 20,000 per home year-to-date. In addition, the sharp rebound in demand has increased the demand for new lot and community items and ticket supply may not be able to keep pace with that demand. With this potential under-supply, builders are willing to pay more for available land. These increases in costs for both material and land ultimately affect affordability. This may not be a big problem in this low interest rate environment as consumers have greater purchasing power, but we will likely crack down on an affordability cap, especially if interest rates rise.
GlobeSt.com: How is COVID affecting your business?
Ricks: Consumers are sure to reassess their current housing needs due to the pandemic, be it in terms of location, amenities or amenities. We see tenants making the purchase decision because they want more space and no longer live in the apartment. Existing homeowners are looking for a bigger house or a house that is more conducive to work / school from home. People are moving mainly for the sake of employment and affordability. Additionally, we have found that people do a lot of research online before visiting our communities so that they have a good idea of what they want in their homes. Our recent launch of our Discovery Collection product with flexible spaces that can serve as home offices, gyms or study rooms has been very well received. Many customers have viewed our virtual reality visualization tools and material options online and can visualize how our homes meet their needs. The customer gets an even more interactive experience in our new home galleries, where they can walk and make option changes using our virtual reality tools. They can also view our physical model homes so customers can experience their home before it is built.
Trendmaker Homes is a member of the TRI Pointe Group building owner family.