Based in Amherst, Nova Scotia, Advantage Homes entered the market with a simple goal – to build quality, well designed and reasonably priced homes throughout the Maritimes. They are recognized across the region as a developer and builder of customizable and custom homes as well being known as a “Green” builder, focusing on sustainable, energy efficient homes. Each of their developments is built with an emphasis on preserving the environment and natural resources. From energy conservation measures, to the careful selection of sustainable building materials; each home is designed to reduce heating and energycosts while incorporating stylish finishes.
“Our core philosophy is to ‘Make Home Ownership Easy’. From the purchasing and building of the house, to owning and maintaining the home, we want everything to be easy for our customers,” says General Manager Andrew Cameron. Cameron and the rest of the Advantage New Homes Management Team; Development Manager Gordon Cameron, Operations Manager Ron Furlong, and Construction Manager Mike Arsenault, have been involved in the construction industry in various roles, from sales, to project management to development, and construction, for over 10 years.
Advantage Homes was founded in 2011 when they saw an opportunity to build the kind of practical homes that no one else was doing at the time. Since then, the company has steadily grown in size and reputation. “We created our design and pricing process to be straightforward and simple for our customers. Our customers can go to our website to choose and price their house. If a client has any other custom requests, we work on those choices on a case-by-case basis” says Cameron. “We’ve created our weekly reporting plan to ensure that our customers are up to date and understand what is happening during construction of their house. We don’t want any surprises for our customers during construction.”
Advantage Homes commits themselves to the customer’s vision and works closely with them to create a product that combines the home owner’s personal interests and needs. They ensure continual communication with clients throughout the entire process, and make every effort possible to ensure their experience is hassle-free. “A house is a large purchase, and we want our customers to feel comfortable entrusting us with the responsibility of building their home. Our openness is the first step in building this relationship. On our website, www.advantagehomes.ca, our customers can see our standard home models and how much all the specific options would cost; in fact, it is possible to price a house completely, and know how much it would cost to build. Once we have the initial contract completed, we give our clients a personalized login to our “client portal”. Through our portal, our clients can ask any questions and send us messages. We also send our clients weekly reports that identify what has happened over the last week, what is planned for the following week, any upcoming selection deadlines and lots of current pictures that can be shared with their friends and family.”
Advantage Homes focuses on the quality of the build but even more importantly, they prioritize customer service before and after building, by offering an excellent builder and third-party warranty. For Advantage Homes, business is built on integrity and customer service, which are important values to everyone in the company.
Cameron credits their success to the knowledge, skills, experience and dedication of their team. This includes their committed carpenters, as well as their roster of professional tradesmen. Cameron says that everyone who works with the company has a passion for what they do, and everyone is hired for their exceptional ability in their specific field. Many of Advantage Homes’ key partners have been working with them since the beginning. He says having those longstanding relationships is important, because it means everyone knows the quality that Advantage Homes expects – and Advantage Homes can trust them to deliver that quality.
“These relationships are key as we need strong suppliers, partners, and trades from lawyers to electricians, surveyors to plumbers, or Realtors to drywallers,” says Cameron. “Maintaining these productive relationships is what keeps us successful. We constantly work with all of our trades and suppliers to ensure that they are representing Advantage New Homes, through their high quality work and overall professionalism. For example, our build team and trades had to get used to the idea of us taking pictures of everything behind the walls and giving them to our customers. “
QUALITY IS KING
Advantage Homes gives their clients the ability to customize their home according to their needs and always work with our customers to customize the living space according to their desires and requirements. “We’ve worked with customers who are moving across country to Amherst, which can make the logistics of picking options and materials challenging. Our client portal was instrumental in maintaining communication and avoiding any surprises. We had a customer from Alberta who bought a house from us in preparation of moving to Amherst. In addition to using the client portal, we took the extra step and found stores in Alberta that carried the same product lines as we were offering. The customer went to the store near their house to choose from those samples and we installed them in their house in Amherst, NS. The first day this customers saw their house was on closing day, and they had no surprises; everything was as expected. They were very happy needless to say.”
In terms of design, the company focuses on classical design with a modern style. Their design team of professional architects, engineers, designers, drafts people and decorators have created homes and a subdivision that everyone will be proud of. Advantage Homes is now building in their new subdivision, Marsh View Estates, located in a quiet area off Derby St. in Amherst, NS.
A perfect spot for nature lovers and active families, Marsh View Estates is described as an oasis of detached, semi-detached, two story and bungalow style homes situated in a one of the nicest neighbourhoods in Amherst. Located within close proximity to local shopping, a hospital, schools, and recreation like the Amherst walking trail, Marsh View Estates is a perfect community that offers everything you may need.
ATTRACTIVE QUALITY CUSTOM HOMES
Advantage Homes offers the same level of quality and service for customers who want them to build their designed home on a lot of their choosing. They continue to “make home ownership easy” especially through the custom home construction process. Through the use of the client meetings, the client portal, emails, pictures and video; the custom homebuyer is always informed. Advantage Homes also strives and continues to be the most reasonably priced custom builder in the area.
BRIGHT FUTURE AHEAD
Currently, Advantage Homes builds 10 to 12 homes a year, either Advantage Home models in Marsh View Estates or custom homes requested by customers on land of their choosing. Even though they are the largest new homebuilder in the Amherst area, Advantage New Homes recognizes that home building is not just about the brick and mortar, but also about the people for whom they are building.
While Advantage continues to build a solid reputation across the Maritimes, the company recognizes it needs to remain competitive and sustainable in the years to come. According to Cameron, “We will continue to grow and move forward by building our home models in Amherst and branching out to build custom and personalized homes for people in the surrounding areas. Over the next five years, I see us moving forward into different communities, such as Sackville, NB, and Truro, NS to develop our own subdivisions and custom home building, with the goal of opening another two or three subdivisions over that time frame.”