Luxury housebuilder eyes growth with expansion into middle-market

High-end Welsh housebuilder Waterstone Homes has announced ambitious plans to expand its housebuilding activities into the mainstream market, as part of the company’s growth strategy.

The family firm, which is renowned for building large, luxury homes in exclusive sought-after locations, is set to diversify its residential offering, adding more affordable homes to its housebuilding repertoire.

As part of the expansion, the business will continue to offer the premium houses its clients are accustomed to under the Waterstone Homes brand, while also introducing a new range of smaller properties through its new subsidiary company.

The new subsidiary, Abode by Waterstone LTD, will specialise in building smaller scale homes, which will offer the high quality and stylish design that Waterstone Homes is renowned for, but at a more competitive price, with plans to complete more than 100 of the new-style homes across south Wales by the end of 2020.

Waterstone Homes’ change in direction follows a highly successful year for the business, which has seen the company sell more than £19.5m worth of homes in the last 12 months alone. The new subsidiary will provide customers with a greater choice of collections tailored to all budgets.

The company’s expansion into mainstream housebuilding comes in response to market trends and a demand from prospective customers for a more competitively priced housing range.

Lee Woodfine, Managing Director at Waterstone Homes, said: “We pride ourselves on being a housebuilder that adapts to public demand and market trends to ensure that we continually offer homes that meet our customers’ changing requirements.

“Over the last few years, we have seen a significant rise in the number of requests for smaller scale properties from individuals wanting the Waterstone Homes style and quality, but in a more affordable range of homes.

“Diversifying into new markets was the obvious next step for Waterstone Homes, enabling us to grow as a business by attracting a broader range of customers, while also fulfilling our vision of being able to offer everyone – regardless of their budget or home-owning history – the ability to have a beautiful, quality home. This move will enable us to offer customers real choice – it is a very exciting time for Waterstone Homes.”

As part of the business’ evolution, Waterstone Homes will continue to offer luxury four- and five-bedroom homes on small, exclusive developments of around 10 to 30 plots. In comparison, Abode by Waterstone will comprise of larger developments of approximately 50-100 homes, containing a mixture of two, three and four-bedroom properties.

Whereas Waterstone Homes’ properties retail at an average cost of £650,000, the new more affordable homes will be priced between £130k and £375k, varying between developments, and will be available to purchase via the Welsh Government’s Help to Buy Scheme.

Each Abode by Waterstone development will consist of competitively priced and intelligently designed homes, tailored to their specific location. The first new development, located at Coed y Darcy in Neath Port Talbot, is already under construction. The £18m scheme will consist of 93 private homes and apartments for sale, as well as 50 much needed affordable homes.

While the new homes will have a smaller footprint than their higher-end counterparts, the properties will still retain the high quality and style associated with the Waterstone Homes brand thanks to their innovative design, high specification and attention to detail.

Lee added: “With their reduced size and price compared to our other homes, Abode by Waterstone’s properties will appeal to everyone from first and second-time buyers, looking to move up the property ladder, to home-owners looking to downsize. The properties will not follow the same format and style at every location, which will allow us to ensure that homebuyers have homes that are suitable to the setting and a style that’s unique to the individual development.

“Our aim is to lead in quality and style within the mainstream property market. We will achieve this through smarter building approaches and by continuing to employ high quality tradesmen. We’ve taken a great deal of care and time building our reputation, and we are confident that our move into the mainstream market will enhance this, while strengthening our position within the industry.”