Like other business sectors, the digital age is impacting the residential construction industry. Many builders and developers have been integrating web technology into their businesses and leveraging social media to reach new markets and fill buyer needs. One of the key drivers of the digital age is the insatiable appetite for information - hence the digital age is often also referred to as the information age.
New home buyers have access to more information than ever before, which enables them to make educated buying decisions. Online they are able to evaluate various builders, share experiences with other purchasers and learn what to look for in a new home. The gap has been the post-sales experience for them. Once a buyer moves into their home, they are typically left with very little material about the biggest investment they are likely to make.
Where builders may have traditionally provided some information to the purchaser in the form of a binder, they can now leverage the web to enhance the quality, quantity, and availability of new home information. Homeowners benefit by having access to manufacturer's warranty information, home maintenance details, and contact details for suppliers and tradespeople. The result - increased satisfaction for homeowners and reduced service-related issues for the builder.
As the "Generation Y's" take over the marketplace, a higher degree of information disclosure will be required to appease this demographic and a web-based platform allows builders to provide it in the form to which are are accustomed.
This article was published in OHBA Magazine, 2011 Trends issue released May 2011.