It's time to crank up the volume. This year's Trade Secrets focuses on how new homes can become more competitive, stand out from the crowd, and be simply irresistible. Interspersed with some hopefully forgivable, cheesy music metaphors will be a set of tools you can use to take your products to the next level of profitability and performance. The tips outlined here can't be found in a book—they come from the experiences of some of the best and brightest in the business.

It all starts with the dirt, and we've collected some great suggestions for creating an incredible site plan that offers the lifestyle elements today's buyers crave. Behind the walls, we've assembled a solid plan to sell buyers on the value of quality construction, energy efficiency, and durability. It may not sound like a way to take their breath away, but the long-term cost savings will keep them happy long after the sex appeal of granite countertops has faded.

Next are ideas for redefining luxury in your designs with high-end attributes for nearly every room of the house. What was once limited to custom building is making its way into more-affordable construction, and we highlight elements to make your floor plans sing. We've also put together a list of the latest and greatest options and upgrades buyers can't and don't want to live without, including that techno-diva, the plasma screen.

We've also given model homes the rock star treatment, asking industry experts for their advice on how to make the most of merchandising, no matter your price point or marketing budget.

All together, it's a plan to make your next project the must-have ticket in your market. All you need now is a lighter—and somebody to yell, “Freebird!”