By R.E. Blake Evans
Clichés are sometimes true--Texans like things big. Hammond Homes capitalizes on this preference at New Forest-Texas Big Series in Houston. Its Longhorn plan is a two-story Texas traditional model with soaring ceilings and a kitchen large enough to feed a posse.
The Series targets move-up family buyers seeking large media rooms, home offices, libraries, and dramatic entrances. The homes, located on large wooded sites, feature five bedrooms and two and a half baths.
Hammond sells the homes without many options and upgrades. Instead, it uses a firm base price and then encourages buyers to purchase upgrades. "We overcame the selling of 'the base price only' by demonstrating the value of the home on a price per square foot basis," says Jenny Conrad, marketing manager for Hammond Homes. Buyers pick and choose from numerous options, customizing their homes. Hammond builds the homes for about $25.75 per square foot, excluding the lot costs.
Project: The Longhorn Plan at New Forest-Texas Big Series, Houston; Sales started: March 2000; Sales through July 2001: 21; Units planned: 23; Units released through July 2001: 21; Price: $190,490; Unit size: 4,541 square feet; Builder: Hammond Homes, Houston; Architect: Kipps Flores Architects, Austin, Texas; Interior merchandiser: Nancy Hammond, Houston; Landscape design: In-house; Ad agency: Baldwin by Design, Sugarland, Texas