Avon Homes’ website states that it focuses on ‘delivering excellence from start to finish’ and this claim is backed up by the fact that the company was recently highly commended within the Best Small Housing Development at the LABC West Midlands Awards for the quality of its Avenue Road scheme. Construction Industry News caught up with Sam Stokes, Director, to see what the achievement means to the business and how it’s looking to build on the success.
“We like to think we go above and beyond what the majority of house builders deliver, so it’s nice that our approach has been recognised with this award,” explains Mr Stokes. “Everyone that looks around our properties always provide very positive feedback on their quality, which is very pleasing.”
Avon Homes’ emphasis on developing high quality products has been honed since its creation five years ago during which time it has built a strong reputation within the Midlands area for the standard of its properties. These range from starter homes for first-time buyers through to bespoke executive houses, such as the Avenue Road development that received the LABC Award.
“Part of what sets us apart is the attention to detail that we invest into our properties,” adds Mr Stokes. “We have a relatively young age demographic within the company so we’re all committed to developing a strong name within the marketplace. The long term objective is to build a reputable brand so we’re fully focused on delivering the best possible product we can.”
This approach was certainly reflected in the Avenue Road development, which involved the demolition of a 1960s-era property and the creation of two large houses on the site. The build on the two new properties, both of which are around 5,500 sq ft in size, took 14 months to complete with a strong emphasis on all aspects of the design and the finishes throughout the project.
“We’re understandably very proud of the Avenue Road development as it really showcases what we’re about and what we can achieve on a large-scale property,” says Mr Stokes. “At the other end of the spectrum, we build smaller properties for those customers that are just getting onto the housing ladder. This means we have full coverage of the market, as we’re able to provide everything from starter homes and apartments through to high-end luxury homes. Whatever the size of the development, they all adhere to the same high standard of workmanship.”
To further cement its quality-led ethos, Avon Homes has put together a tried and trusted cohort of like-minded suppliers that it can fully rely upon. “We use 90% of the same people on every job so there’s many long-standing relationships in place, which helps hugely from a consistency point of view. Our suppliers are very much in-tune with our culture as a company and we all work together as a well-knit team, ensuing that everything runs smoothly.”
As it strives to capitalise further on the well-oiled infrastructure that it has put in place, Avon Homes is keen to use its LABC Award recognition as the springboard for further growth and expansion, although it is finding the marketplace to be an uncertain environment at the moment. “It’s hard to put our finger on exactly what the market is doing so in the meantime we’re focusing on smaller sites and taking a view on larger opportunities as they present themselves. The Brexit situation is definitely taking its toll and there’s a very argument for saying that it’s a buyer’s market, which brings its own challenges. However, we continue to receive strong interest in our properties because their quality is a real point of difference in what remains a very competitive sector.”
Even with the issues that it is facing, Avon Homes remains focused on the Midlands region, tending to operate in a corridor that ranges from Solihull up to Leicester. It is just about to start a six-property development in Coventry and will soon complete its most prestigious development to date of two houses on Temple Road, Dorridge in August. With other luxury homes in the pipeline too, further award recognition can’t be ruled out going forward.