New Home Co.—No. 81 on the 2023 Builder 100—announced its expansion into Texas with the acquisition of privately owned Hamilton Thomas Homes.

Led by veteran home building executives John Bohnen and Jennifer Keller, Hamilton Thomas was founded in 2021 and operates in the Houston and Austin, Texas, markets.

“We are thrilled to announce that we are bringing the New Home Co. brand to Texas,” says Matthew Zaist, CEO at New Home Co. “With Houston and Austin, we are entering the second and fourth largest home building markets in the nation, both of which feature dynamic, robust, and growing job bases fueled by diversified industries including manufacturing, health care, technology, trade, and energy.”

Bohnen and Keller will remain at the company to lead the newly formed Texas region of New Home Co.

“At its core, home building is a people business, and there are no two finer people in this industry than John and Jennifer,” continues Zaist. “Their entrepreneurial drive and local market expertise coupled with their integrity and track record made this the right time and opportunity to plant the New Home Co. flag in Texas. We look forward to growing and scaling our business in Houston and Austin, and we plan to expand throughout the state in years to come.”

Bohnen was formerly an area president for Taylor Morrison. He joined Taylor Morrison by way of the William Lyon Homes acquisition in 2020. Prior to William Lyon Homes, Bohnen was chief operations officer (COO) and co-founder of RSI Communities, before selling the company to William Lyon Homes in 2018. He also previously served as the Austin division president at Cal Atlantic Homes and Standard Pacific Homes.

Keller has previously served as division president for William Lyon Homes, COO for Land Tejas, and a senior manager at KB Home and AECOM. She has more than 25 years of experience in home building, land acquisition, land development, and water resources engineering.

“Jennifer and I could not be more excited about our Hamilton Thomas family joining with the incredible team at New Home Co.,” says Bohnen. “We’ve both known Matt Zaist for many years, and when we discussed the idea of combining our two companies, we immediately saw the strategic value for all parties.”

New Home Co. has assumed a portfolio of approximately 2,000 lots owned and controlled by Hamilton Thomas, representing an estimated 12 new-home communities. The company operates three active communities in Houston, and its first two Austin communities are anticipated to open in early 2024.

"Our goal is to grow New Home Co. into a top 15 national builder in the coming years. This involves scaling our existing operations and expanding both organically and inorganically through strategic acquisitions," states Zaist. "From the start, Houston and Austin were on our radar and wish list. While Houston and Austin have proven to be excellent long-term home building markets, the landscape has evolved into a highly competitive and intricate land market, often underestimated by many. John and Jennifer's expertise in land acquisition, entitlement, and development positions New Home to navigate and succeed in this environment, making a significant difference for our company."