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North Texas homebuilder: ‘It’s still a very fluid market’

This CEO shares his thoughts on the market for new homes in North Texas.
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Southlake-based Bloomfield Homes is building and selling homes in more than 40 residential communities throughout North Texas, with most of those being in the smaller and midsize cities outside of Dallas and Fort Worth.

True to form, Bloomfield recently launched its latest project in Glenn Heights, a city with a population of about 13,000 south of Dallas.

That development on South Hampton Road will have 286 houses priced from the high $200s to the low $400s, said Don Dykstra, chairman of Bloomfield Homes and president of Bloomfield Properties Inc. You can read more about that one here.

We checked in with Dykstra on the new-housing market:

How are home sales for Bloomfield?

We’re open for business every day. We sold 49 houses last weekend. We’ve got all the same precautions as far as distancing and masks and cleaning. We have an extra person there to clean up after each person that walks the models, but we are open.

How many communities are you selling homes in right now?

A lot. Probably 45 active selling neighborhoods.

What areas within DFW are you seeing the most sales in?

We're seeing them all over.

How are your sales comparing to last year at this time?

In the month of April, we were down 9 percent from the prior year. In the month of May, we’re up about 25 percent over the prior year for the first couple of weeks.

What’s driving the market right now?

You’ve got some real positives and you’ve got some negatives. The positives are that there are people who want out of apartments. And you’ve got very low inventory of resale homes. I think there’s also a preference for the new, fresh, clean, unlived-in home vs. a used home right now. We’re also offering some very attractive financing — 2.99 percent fixed for 30 years.

What are the negatives?

The negative is we’re seeing cancellations due to job loss and to general buyer nervousness. It’s still a very fluid market, but there’s a lot of business being done.

When you talk to other homebuilders, has their experience been the same?

There’s a wide range of experiences depending on price point. The lower price point is stronger right now, where people don’t have a house they have to sell. Also, (builders) are adopting different strategies. People are focusing on their online efforts. While I think that works and we also offer that, most people still want to walk through a model home and see what they’re buying.

And your models are open?

They’re open and staffed seven days a week. We do limit the number of people in a model home at any one time to two groups at a time. We will do private appointments or virtual tours if they would like that.

 

This interview has been edited for brevity and clarity.

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