What is a Model Home and How Do You Create One That Entices Buyers?

Ever since 2011, home sales in the U.S. have been steadily on the rise (barring a slight dip in 2014). With 6.5 million homes sold in 2020 alone, both the demand for homes as well as their prices continue to grow

The number of real estate and interior design firms competing to provide the best experience to potential homeowners has also been growing proportionally. In such a market, well-designed and beautifully presented model homes can give your business a competitive edge. 

This article discusses what a model home is, why it’s important for Home Builders and how you can design one that captures the hearts of your homebuyers. 

Let’s dive in.

What Is a Model Home? 

A model home is a sample property built while developing a real estate subdivision or community. Builders and realtors use it to showcase their work and help prospective buyers visualize their fully furnished new homes. 

Just as in actual houses, model homes will have electricity and water. Plus, they often include popular wishlist items like luxurious flooring, granite kitchen countertops, more open floor plans, etc. to attract buyers. 

Model homes play a critical role in the home buying process and help buyers come to a decision more easily. And sometimes they may be sold just like the rest of the houses.

Why Do You Need Model Homes? 

When houses are under construction, they don’t make a pretty picture. The dust, construction materials and equipment lying around at homesites hardly create a pleasant experience for visiting homebuyers. Plus, there may be safety risks too. 

Even if construction is complete, prospective buyers can’t actually visualize what a home may look like once its interiors are done. Sellers can certainly stage all the houses in a community, but it wouldn’t be practical considering the expense. 

Homeownership is often a life-long dream for most people and an expensive and long-term investment. The average homeowner lives in their house for about 16 years, while a small percentage lives in them for as long as 40 years. That’s why potential buyers want to “test” a house before fully committing to a purchase. 

While floor plans or 3D models can give some idea, it’s still difficult for people to judge if a house may actually turn out to be what they want. For example, the average person may not be able to visualize the size of the rooms just from their sq. ft. measurements.

A model home solves all of these problems and also provides a great way for Home Builders to showcase their latest features, techniques and product options. 

How to Design a Model Home That Converts Buyers

Designing a model home may not be that difficult, but certain decisions can make or break a sale. Here are four great tips to design a model home that attracts buyers. 

1. Determine Your Target Market and Objectives

Before you start, think about who you want to build a home for. Are you looking to build vacation homes for wealthy customers or suburban residences for small families? 

You need to identify who your ideal buyers might be. Where do they live? What age groups do they belong to? What jobs do they work? What do their families look like? 

Also, consider what they might be looking for in a new home. Are they into gardening? Do they enjoy working out? Do they host parties frequently? All of these will help you design a model home that appeals to your target buyer’s interests. 

Prospective buyers are often well aware of the latest trends in home design and look out for them when buying a house. So, work with interior designers to incorporate the latest trends in home decor in your model homes. 

It’s best to use a neutral color palette and boost visual interest with decorative elements such as tile patterns, light fixtures, etc. Using these elements near the front of a home helps to attract attention easily. 

However, avoid overcrowding your model home’s furnishings and fixtures with the latest design themes and fads. The idea is to engage buyers and not to detract them from the home’s appeal.  

3. Enable Customization

Here’s where your buyer personas (described above) will come in handy. Focus on incorporating elements that reflect your target customer’s priorities — natural materials, open layouts, spa-like baths, blended indoor and outdoor living spaces, etc.

You can even take this up a notch. Instead of just customizing your model home for a particular demographic, you can customize it for individual customers. With tools like Hyphen HomeSight, you can offer your prospective homebuyers the ability to customize their homes and see their selections come to life while building their dream home.

Hyphen HomeSight allows them to design a custom home by selecting loaded structural elements, interior and exterior colors, elevations, fixtures, etc. so they can compare different options/upgrades and visualize their new home easily.

4. Use the Right Software to Streamline Design and Customization  

It’s not easy to create highly-detailed and customizable model homes for your target audience. But modern design tools make it possible. Hyphen HomeSight uses easy drag-and-drop features that allow you to modify your designs quickly and represent them accurately. 

This makes it incredibly easy for Builders and real estate agents to showcase perfectly customized homes to buyers, thus increasing conversions and profitability. 

Final Words 

Designing a model home goes way beyond simply making it look pretty. It’s about understanding the target demographic and making informed merchandising decisions so that prospective buyers may picture themselves living there. 

Model homes coupled with the right design tools can help you create very strong first impressions. Contact us today to learn how Hyphen HomeSight can make your model homes feel like home to prospective buyers. 

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