On February 15, 2022, Natalia Dobrynina, head of sales, Mighty Buildings; Brian Gaudio, chief executive officer, Module; and Steve Linton, president Deltec Homes joined in a discussion with facilitator Katy Biggerstaff, vice president of public relations, NewGround PR & Marketing on managing consumer expectations in the off-site housing market.
The off-site construction method is not the only thing customers are after. They recognize that off-site offers a lot of different solutions: it’s price point for some; sustainability for others, or it’s stronger or it’s going to last longer or maybe it’s a combination of those. People make decisions about their homes in an emotional way, and we have to have something that is attractive to them and exciting to them.
Off-site companies need to turn the focus from the still-stigmatized “off-site” aspect of their businesses to their values: commitment to community to designing homes that are sustainable, resilient and have a connection with the natural world; the importance of good design; turnkey services; and faster delivery dates.
On spreading the good news:
Educate builders, realtors, appraisers, and lenders as well as consumers: share educational videos, create showrooms and pop-ups, bring people to your factories, develop a broker referral program. But, beyond that, create a disruption that is going to make the consumer drive the desire for off-site products. Said, Linton, “The more people ask for it, the more Realtors and builders will pay attention.”