PodcastNational Housing Market Outlook

A Great Time to Be Delivering the American Dream

Dean_Wehrli_web
JBurns Headshot_web

Dean Wehrli

John Burns

August 12, 2020

Steve Hilton, the CEO and founder of the 7th-largest home builder in country, flipped luxury home builder Meritage Homes upside down a few years ago, turning them into one of the largest entry-level spec builders in the country. That spec strategy (build the home before it is sold) has helped Meritage tremendously this year. They were priced right and didn’t get caught without ready-to-move-in homes to sell, as many other builders did.

Featured guest

Steve Hilton, Chairman, CEO, and Co-Founder, Meritage Homes

Steve shares his thoughts with host Dean Wehrli on the cultural transition he went through, the ups and downs of 2020, and the strategic importance of Meritage’s pioneering investments in energy efficiency.

Like most, 2020’s boom, bust, and then bigger boom caught Steve off guard. However, he is now calling this the perfect storm for home builders. His customers are taking advantage of:

  • the lowest mortgage rates in history, which are very important to Meritage’s payment-focused buyers
 
  • a societal shift back toward more home buying in suburban locations, where there is more elbow room and where Meritage can build and sell more homes
 

Steve also discusses how his team has addressed the national lot shortage by developing their own lots. While land development is a riskier business than home building, Meritage handles that risk by paying down debt to the point where their balance sheet has never been stronger and purchasing the land in phases whenever possible.

Enjoy the words of wisdom from Steve Hilton and Dean Wehrli.

Want to Subscribe to the New Home Insights Podcast?

The New Home Insights Podcast is available on all major podcast platforms. Click any of the platforms below to subscribe.​

Building Market Intelligence™

Every week, we deliver analysis to over 40,000 subscribers with our Building Market Intelligence™ newsletter. Subscribe to our weekly BMI newsletters to stay current on pressing topics in the housing industry.

About The Author

Dean Wehrli
Principal
Dean helps housing sector clients figure out not just what might work and what might not, but why.
John Burns
Chief Executive Officer
As CEO, John grows, leads, and supports a team of passionate, articulate, likable, and smart experts. Together, we solve today so our clients can navigate to tomorrow.

Contact Us

If you have any questions about our services or if you would like to speak to one of our experts about we can help your business, please contact Client Relations at clientservices@jbrec.com.

Products and Services Mentioned

New Home Insights Podcast

Issues, interviews, and insights into the U.S. housing market. Monthly takes on what’s happening in the housing market today, and what might be happening tomorrow.

Research Membership

Our research services enable our clients to gauge housing market conditions and better align their business and strategic investments in the housing industry. We provide a thoughtful and unique holistic approach of both quantitative and qualitative analysis to help clients make informed housing investment decisions.

Real Estate Consulting

Our experienced team of consultants helps clients make sound housing investment decisions. We thrive on their success and work with many clients over multiple years and numerous projects. ​

Latest Insights

Earth, Wind, and Fire: NileBuilt Homes Defy the Elements
Design Disruption: Architects’ Floor Plan Forecasts
Keep, Stop, Start: Homebuilding’s Health Kick