Although Neal Communities' founder Pat Neal has seen the “recession movie” many times in his career, the Lakewood Ranch, Fla. builder says President Trump’s tariffs have started to affect the business. The builder’s popular Rose Cottage model, an entry-level home in the $150,000 to $250,000 price range, has become impossible to build and sell, Neal tells the Business Observer. The company has sold at least 700 of the models since the line's introduction in 2008, but with rising costs of land, labor and regulatory fees, the home will be discontinued.
Neal, in the statement, recognizes some companies pass tariff costs on to consumers. But he also recognizes if the price climbs much higher than $250,000, or reaches $300,000, than it’s no longer an entry-level home and defeats the purpose of being in that market.
While this is a setback, Neal adds he’s not totally discouraged, yet, and is “currently working on designs and plans that may be able to circumvent the rise in production costs while also providing affordable housing solutions.”Read More