Toll Brothers, best known for its super-sized homes, and available in a number of Massachusetts communities, surprised the market recently with a 44% surge in orders from its second quarter. It was their first quarterly increase in signed contracts in four years.
This is all happening at a time when builders have been working on plans to shrink and downsize homes based on their perception that the market has changed. According to the Census Bureau, the average size of new detached single-family homes sold in the U.S. has declined over the past year.
"Buyers are more conservative and careful than they were during the housing boom," says Doug Yearley, a regional president for Toll. But many "still want the big house with all the upgrades."
The company has cut their house prices considerably with a national average at around $535,000. That's down about 8% from last year and has enabled more buyers to purchase with conforming loans rather than having to go the "jumbo route."
A Toll spokesperson said that about 17% of their buyers paid cash for their homes with only 10% needing jumbo loans.
It also helped that the company offered its own special financing program with an interest of 3% for the first year. The rate climbs to 4% in the second year and then settles at 5% for the 30-year duration.
For buyers of McMansions, that is a pretty good deal.
Copyright 2009 - Claudette Millette, President, The Buyers Counsel - 800-392-1446
Serving Home Buyers in: Ashland, Holliston, Hopkinton, Natick, Newton, Northborough, Framingham, Sherborn, Southborough, Sudbury, Wayland, Westborough