Suburbia: It has been a panacea and an expletive. Touted for affordability and maligned for automobile dependence, suburbia is a fact of life in the U.S.
Sales All-Star: Tim Moncrief
After the technology boom went bust, so did much of the demand for higher-end housing in Austin, Texas.
Company: Newmark Homes, Austin, Texas
Awards: Numerous company awards
2001 net sales units: 17
2001 net sales dollars: $9.8 million
Buyer referral rate: 35%
Activity gauge: 300 e-mails twice per month; 50 follow-up calls per month with previous buyers; 40 follow-up calls per month with potential buyers
Cancellation or bust-out rate: 3%
After the technology boom went bust, so did much of the demand for higher-end housing in Austin, Texas. In 2001, it fell to new home sales specialists such as Tim Moncrief of Newmark Homes (a subsidiary of Technical Olympic Corp.) to move homes with price tags as high as $800,000. Moncrief, who has sold new homes for 20 years, appears to have taken it all in stride by concentrating on the Realtor and referral markets.
Moncrief's approach to the Realtor market is nothing short of a full-court press. First, he runs a well-attended weekly Realtor property tour that starts with his models, moves to other builders' models and even stops at a few resales. By including a mix of product on his tours, Moncrief says he benefits from increased trust from Realtors. "My whole theory is that they are going to have that tour anyway, whether I was involved with it or not."
A second initiative in Moncrief's Realtor courtship is a monthly marketing report "that shows all new homes and resales within my community. I include all the square footages, prices and who the builder is. I know I am hitting the mark because of the phone calls I get if it is ever late."
When prospects arrive at his sales center for the first time, Moncrief makes sure they get an opportunity to enjoy the community's many amenities. He invited his family clients to enjoy the community's Fourth of July parade of decorated bicycles. Golfers get a complimentary round of golf, and tennis players get court time. Everyone gets lunch at the club.
"Once I do that, I am fairly sure they are going to buy out here," Moncrief says. "The key is to get involved with what makes them tick."
Tim on his sales technique Tim on time management