The 4th quarter is a time most homebuilders should be coasting to a smooth finish. It’s a time to prepare a new budget, brainstorm new strategies, and learn from the highs and lows of the past twelve months.
Unfortunately, this period often finds homebuilders struggling to finish homes in an effort to save their bottom line. The delays and procrastination from prior months come crashing down into a hectic, fiery December.
Centers of excellence should be a catalyst for developing a process-driven culture that is focused on delivering world-class results.
Clark Ellis, Principal with Continuum Advisory Group, and author of the recent article featured on builderonline.com “Moneyball for Homebuilders: Take an ‘everything matters’ approach to operations, and ‘small ball’ will get you the wins”, was recently invited to join an outstanding lineup of speakers at the 5th annual UBS Homebuilder University on April 9th in New York City. The theme of this year’s conference was how homebuilders can overcome increased lot, material and labor costs to build a profitable home that addresses the desires of the First Time Homebuyer. The conference is attended by professional investors who are interested in learning the true challenges that are facing today’s homebuilder, and which builders are best positioned for overcoming these challenges.
At Continuum, we get a little excited when baseball starts. We love the game, and of course the weather that comes along with it. If you’re in the same boat, our recent Big Builder article is for you. We see a big opportunity for builders to transition their strategy to a “small ball” approach, one that has seemed to work well for MLB teams in the post-steroid era (see the San Francisco Giants).
A strong estimator that is trained to accurately estimate a house and understands material management at the field level can be a home-run hire for any homebuilder. Unfortunately, in-house estimating functions were largely eliminated during the downturn. Most builders outsourced their estimating needs, allowed the trades or suppliers to do their own estimates, or transitioned from direct-buy to turnkey. Choosing to recreate an estimating function and finding space for it in your budget may seem unrealistic. But would $83,000 in direct savings change your mind?
Imagine that you were lost in the Arctic for months, or 7 years as the case may be. It has taken every ounce of your strength, endurance and resources to make it back to civilization alive, barely. You have lost…