PHILIP SIMMONS Division president, John Laing Urban, Culver City, Calif.

Although Simmons sees his business as distinct from traditional single-family builders—“urban is something you are rather than something you do”—he says both types of builders will be looking to streamline operations and seek new opportunities in 2006 and beyond.

“Fine tuning the focus and management, limiting expansion of product types, limiting the expansion of markets, and staying true to your core business [is how to succeed in 2006]. … [However, we also have a] long-term strategy of expanding into ‘B' markets and into high-rise [while] avoiding the questionable demographics.”

RICH STAKY Colorado division president, John Laing Homes, Denver, Colo.

Staky believes that his experience in the stagnant Denver market has prepared his business to not only survive but actually excel in a possible downturn in 2006.

“If the pie isn't growing, you've got to get people interested in buying a new home [and getting out of an existing home]. We're looking closely at the 45 to 60 age group and looking at what would get them into a new home. And then we're bringing some of those new products to market in 2006.”

JOHN EBERLE Corporate sales and marketing, Vantage Homes, Corrales, N.M.

For Eberle, 2006 strategies are all about tapping new resources to better reach the target customer.

“We're going to go over [in 2006] with a stronger Web presence. … It'll be two-fold, not just looking at the customer looking for a home but also aimed at Realtors. … [Realtors] have contact with the vast majority of the buying public. Without Realtors we will ultimately struggle.”