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Bruce Williams relaunches Lakewood home sales

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  • | 5:00 a.m. November 4, 2009
  • East County
  • Real Estate
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LAKEWOOD RANCH — After more than four years of virtually standstill business, Bruce Williams Homes is ready to jump back into the new home market.

The company plans to build two spec homes in Greenbrook Banks and to work hard to sell its remaining 30-plus lots in Greenbrook, Bruce Williams President Britt Williams said.

“You couldn’t build a home and beat the foreclosures and short sales (before),” Williams said. “This is an attempt to get back in the market. We can compete now.”

To do so, the company is introducing a set of housing designs called the Heritage Collection. Floor plans for the new collection are smaller than before, ranging from about 1,300 to 1,700 square feet, but they offer high quality, more eco-friendly materials and designs at lower price points, Williams said.

New home prices in Greenbrook will start at $189,900.

The company, now celebrating its 40th year, has made adjustments in the last few years to survive changes in the market, but the virtual rebirth of its new home construction division has been a major morale boost.

“Internally, we’re calling it the new BW,” Williams said.

It’s an exciting time for Williams, who saw new home sales drop from 30 a month during the real estate boom to just four.

“The market for us stopped Oct. 1, 2005,” Williams said.

The company did not recognize that fact at first, but saw sales numbers steadily decline. To combat the changing market, the company began offering custom home renovations while trying to sell off existing inventory.

And now as the company celebrates its 40th year, it will continue its high-end custom home building and renovation while also offering its new high-value green product.

“We’re on two different tracks right now,” Williams said.

Williams said he is proud of how his company worked closely with trade partners to come up with ideas for new designs and products to make homes more affordable and eco-friendly without cutting quality.

“It’s fun to be back in the business of building things and it’s neat to see the rest of the team pulling together and get energized,” Williams said.

Williams said homes in the new Heritage Collection will be sold out of an existing model home in Greenbrook Banks rather than built and turned into furnished model homes. The idea is for buyers either to purchase an inventory home or to select a different lot on which to build.

“People looking at existing (homes) want to know they can move in right away,” he said.

Williams said his company is working on developing larger floor plans for the Heritage Collection.

Contact Pam Eubanks at [email protected].

The Heritage Collection
Bruce Williams’ new home designs go back to a feel offered earlier in the company’s history when it was first building in Summerfield in Lakewood Ranch and offered homes with front porches.

But this time, every design has a front porch. Garages have been pushed back to de-emphasize that space.

“I think that front porch kind of symbolizes that getting back to the basics,” Williams said, noting buyers are less interested in upgrades such as granite counter tops than in simply finding a good home.

Heritage Collection houses are smaller than the company’s more recent designs, ranging from about 1,300 to 1,700 square feet, but Williams said they have a great room, foyer and plenty of storage.