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Business Observer Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018 1 year ago

Builder marks record-setting year

Neal Communities sold 1,177 homes in 2017.

LAKEWOOD RANCH — Lakewood Ranch-based homebuilder Neal Communities set an all-time annual sales record in 2017 with 1,177 homes sold and 1,183 homes closed statewide.

The homebuilder saw a 6% increase in home sales from 2016.

“Our focus is on doing it right and being really good at what we do," Neal President Michael Storey told YourObserver, a sister publication of the Business Observer. "I think today's consumer votes with their wallet, so the fact that we can continue to grow and continue to attract more buyers to our brand says that we're doing it right."

Neal Communities' sales started slower than expected in the first quarter of 2017, the article adds, but picked up in the summer months as buyers who may have hesitated earlier in the year made a purchasing decision later on. Even with a two-week slowdown in September around Hurricane Irma, the homebuilder rebounded with a strong fourth quarter to secure the record-setting year.

That was in part due to a healthy market that Storey said has strengthened since the recession. "Fundamentally the housing market is really good right now," Storey said. "I think it's right where it ought to be."

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