Texas Builder Brings Tech to Multi-Family Developments

Lennar Multifamily Community’s Justin Foster is embracing the Summit’s new elements to help LMC become a multifamily tech leader.

The 2018 TecHome Builder Summit, held from Dec. 5-7, was the largest in the event’s five-year history. In its return to the Phoenix Convention Center, 251 of the United States’ and Canada’s most progressive high-volume, luxury and multifamily homebuilders came together to take the next steps in developing their companies’ home tech strategies.

From one-on-one meetings with sponsors, small group boardroom presentations with those home tech vendors and general session content on the top tech topics of today, the event sets up attendees to better leverage the possibilities of home technology to impress and serve their buyers.

One of this year’s guests was Lennar Multifamily Communities manager of community technology Justin Foster, who attended for his second year. As LMC is committed to finding the best ways to incorporate technology in its projects, Foster felt it was important to include the Summit on his schedule.

“It’s great. It’s always a good conference,” Foster says. “It takes you out of your comfort zone a little bit. At a lot of conferences, you just meet the same people over and over again. But here, we are assigned to meet other folks, both vendors and partners.”

One of those vendors he met with was Delta Products where he was introduced to one of its BreezeSignature fans. The product was recognized last year as the Best Overall Product in the TecHome Brilliance Awards, and it blew him away at this year’s event.

“I’ve never thought that a bathroom fan could be so cool,” Foster says. “But, it’s super impressive and it makes me want to go back home and change out all of my fans.”

Also taking his TecHome Builder Summit experience to another level this year was the implementation of the Peer Study Group program, an initiative designed to help small groups of builders form mutually beneficial peer relationships. These groups spent two days learning together and developing connections with each other to encourage them to share ideas and trade advice on tech options long after the event ended.

Foster says it was a great concept and one he and his other group members are embracing moving forward.

“A lot of our group was from Dallas, so we all kind of had common areas that we work in and different vendors we’ve used,” he explains. “So, we were all able to share lessons learned on the projects we’ve worked on, what worked, what didn’t work and what we all can collectively do to improve process.”

Foster says his group has committed to meet quarterly going forward to continue to talk about new technologies. He believes this group approach can help them all navigate the growing TecHome world and become assets for each other.

It’s another way the TecHome Builder Summit is separating itself as the premier home technology event for builders.

“It’s evolved, and it gets better and better each year,” Foster says. “You’re getting schedules down and you know what to expect so you’re not caught off-guard. It’s a great event.”