101 Blog Post Ideas For Home BuildersBy Patricia Garcia, BDX Content Manager

Now that you’ve created a blog for your website and have been posting regularly, you’ve probably found that it’s getting … harder! Do you feel as though you’ve written all there is to know about your company and new homes? Don’t worry — it happens to the best of us: writers’ block or just plain writer’s fatigue plagues every writer.

There’s no doubt that you can offer your buyers with pertinent information about their home or fun facts, but if you’re coming up short on blog topics, we have compiled 101 ideas to help keep your blog filled with timely content (set up by topic, no less):

It’s All About You, Your Buyers and New Homes:

  1. Meet Our Team: Spotlight team members by asking them to answer questions like, “What are your hobbies?”, to bring a human face to the company.
  2. Who Are We? (Write about the company’s history, heritage, philosophy, awards, etc.)
  3. Ask Our Experts (Interview subject-matter experts from your company to offer useful information to homebuyers and homeowners on financing, designing, etc.)
  4. Model Home Spotlight
  5. Spotlight on Community Amenities/Features (What are some of the most attractive features of your community?)
  6. How We Work with Independent Realtors
  7. Did You Know … ? (Fun facts about the company and newly built homes — you can create your own infographics with Infogram (http://infogr.am/) or other similar sites.)
  8. Connect with Us Online! (Include all of the ways buyers and prospective clients can follow you on social media.)
  9. How Do You Compare? (Use the metrics in your Local Market Toolkit to compare your stats. Don’t have a Local Market Toolkit? Email info@thebdx.com.
  10. Where Do Our Buyers Come From? (Create a map with pins showing where your buyers hail from.)
  11. Start Fresh. Buy New. (Use the factoids, graphics and videos on http://startfresh.newhomesource.com/ to help buyers learn about the benefits of newly built homes.)
  12. Room of the Week (Buyer-generated content: ask homeowners to send photos of a certain room in the home, then post the top 3 to show examples of great design, etc.)
  13. What’s Your Favorite Part of Your New Home? (Collect stories and comments or survey new homeowners.)
  14. My Town, My Street: Why Moving to Your Town/City is a Good Bet for Relocating Buyers
  15. Hottest Upgrades and Options (Buyer preference stats)
  16. Mythbusting: The Truth About New Homes
  17. It’s Not Just Pretty: What are the design and construction techniques you use in the building process
  18. Top 10 Upgrades That Pay Off at Resale
  19. Meet the Folks Who Run Your Homeowners Association
  20. Our Favorite Homes from TV and the Movies
  21. What Do Homebuyers Typically Buy After Moving In?
  22. Share the Love: Cite content from sister or partner sites that support newly constructed homes or offer guest posts from reputable partners.
  23. Lights, Camera, Action: Sharing the Excitement of Your New Home’s Construction (Encourage your buyers to document and share their new home journey through online tools such as Facebook and Pinterest.)

The Nuts & Bolts of Homeownership:

  1. Simple Scheduled Maintenance (Include monthly or seasonal tips for maintaining a new home — how-to videos, anyone?)
  2. What does a new home buyer’s tool kit look like? (Tools new home buyers need!)
  3. Glossary of Common Terms New Homebuyers Should Know
  4. We’ve Got Your Covered: What to Know About Your Warranties
  5. What to Know About Builder Allowances
  6. Why You Should Welcome the New Neighbors (And How)
  7. What to Know About Warranty Requests
  8. Are Solar Panels Right for My Home?
  9. Inspections and Walkthroughs (What buyers need to know, what to expect and what to look for)
  10. What’s a Punch List?
  11. Pests: What to Know and How to Keep Them at Bay
  12. Parade of Homes (Getting the most from your local POH and spotlight any of the company’s homes being featured.)
  13. Get It Sold: Tips for a Selling Your Old Home Faster
  14. Protecting Your New Home from Inclement Weather
  15. Emergency Preparedness: Create a Plan for the Family
  16. Flooring for Your Lifestyle (What are some things to consider when choosing flooring: spouse or child with asthma, pets, etc.)
  17. Is a Finished Basement Right for You?
  18. What Buyers Should Know about Energy Efficiency (Explain what a HERS score is and why it’s important for their home.)
  19. Heat It Up: How to Safely Heat Your Home
  20. Specialty Housing: Over 50 Housing, Multigenerational Housing, Universal Design, etc.
  21. Dust, Allergens and Other Things That Make You Feel Miserable (what to know and how to fight it)
  22. Creating Community Groups
  23. Home Hacks (Buyer-generated content: Ask buyers for any home & garden tips/tricks. Example: Use fake spider webs for a spooky effect during Halloween— and for collecting fallen leaves after.)

 Show Me the Money:

  1. Financing 101
  2. Understanding Credit Scores
  3. Insurance 101
  4. First-time Buyer? What Your Need to Know About Financing a New Home
  5. New Homes and Taxes (What to know about taxes, credit, etc.)
  6. What to Know About Closing Costs
  7. Types of Home Loans – And Which Is the Best One for You?

‘Tis the Season:

  1. How to Protect Your Home This Holiday Season
  2. Preparing Your Lawn for the Winter, Spring, Fall and Summer
  3. Spring Cleaning Made Easy
  4. Earth Day feature: Let Us Count the Ways: Your Eco-Conscious Efforts
  5. Earth Day feature: Household Products That Will Help You Save Water
  6. Happy New Year: Creating a Home Gym in your New Home
  7. Holiday Hosting: A Survival Guide for You and Your New Home
  8. Holiday Guide to Hosting in Your New Home
  9. Tastefully Decorating Your New Home for Halloween and Christmas

Designing/Decorating:

  1. Pet-Washing Stations and Other Pet-Friendly Home Features
  2. Creating an Accent Wall That Creates Pop, Not Headaches
  3. The Change-up: Changing Your Walls Without Paint, Wallpaper or a Headache
  4. How to Organize Your New Home
  5. How to Design a Hip and Cool Kids Room
  6. Designing on a Budget
  7. What’s the Difference? (Explain the difference in architectural styles and design styles.)
  8. Is Your Home Kid-Safe?
  9. Is Your Home Pet-Safe?
  10. Color Trends (Paint, upholstery, etc.)
  11. Trends in Master Bathrooms
  12. Laundry Rooms to Make You Swoon
  13. Design Trend of the Moment (Animals, gray, distressed wood looks, etc.)
  14. Mud Rooms: What Are They and How to Best Utilize Them in Your Home
  15. What’s the Right Kind of Lighting for Your Home?
  16. The Coolest Home Automation Products
  17. It’s Easy Being Green: Products that Will Save Energy, Water — and Money
  18. Home Design Sites We Love

Outdoor Living:

  1. Enhancing Your Patio with an Outdoor Kitchen
  2. Is Rain Harvesting For You?
  3. What Plants Work with Your Home and Area
  4. Grass Not for You? Alternatives to a Grass Lawn
  5. What’s Hot in Outdoor Living
  6. Curb Appeal: How a Well-Landscaped Yard Can Add Value to Your Home
  7. To Deck or Not to Deck?
  8. Garden Tools You Should Never Be Without
  9. Zoned Out: What Zone Are You? (Guide to hardiness zones with links to local nurseries.)
  10. Water Fun: Is a Swimming Pool a Good Bet?

What’s Next?

  1. Recipes and Ideas for the Ultimate Housewarming Party
  2. Tips for Moving to a New City
  3. Tips for Spending the First Night in Your New Home
  4. Moving with Kids
  5. Moving with Pets
  6. How to Move In Without Destroying Your New Home
  7. Getting to Know You: Meeting the Neighbors
  8. Getting Acquainted with the Neighborhood
  9. Living Naturally: All-Natural Cleaning Products You Already Have in Your Home
  10. Best Apps for Your Home
  11. Avoiding Clutter in Your New Home

Don’t underestimate the news and pop culture for inspiration too. Remember the hubbub about the mortgage interest deduction a few months back? As a home builder, you are at the forefront of the industry and can best deliver a thoughtful and informative post about what homeowners should know — and you can help dispel any misinformation at the same time.

Finding inspiration for your blog can come from anywhere, so always be on the lookout for good fodder, especially success stories from homebuyers. Happy writing!

Patricia Garcia is the content manager for BDX.

By BDX Guest Blogger, Carol Morgan, mRELEVANCE

How many fans does your Facebook page have? 100? 500? 1,000? 10,000? Now, how many of those “fans” are actually engaging with your company? More likely than not, not as many as you’d like. While gaining new fans on any social media site these days can be done through social media advertising, actually getting them to like, comment, retweet, share, etc. is something that must be done organically. And, according to Hubspot, photos are a great way to engage fans and solve this challenge. In fact, Facebook posts that include photos receive 53 percent more likes and 104 percent more comments than the average post.

Sounds impressive? It is. However, Facebook isn’t the only place marketers are seeing picture engagement. The rise of Pinterest and Instagram over the past year has also played an important role in determining that pictures really are worth more than one thousand words.

By posting more photos on Facebook, you’re not only increasing engagement, but also increasing EdgeRank, which is Facebook’s visibility algorithm based on user interaction. The higher your EdgeRank, the more likely it is your content is showing up in your followers’ newsfeeds.

Does this mean that your page should strictly start posting photos? No. Variety is still essential. Just like no one wants to see a Facebook page filled with just text statuses, they also don’t want to see just photos. However, you can spice up your links by posting a photo from your post as the main status with the link URL in the description or comments section. In fact, by posting a photo with a link, you are increasing your odds of getting a click through by 84 percent.

So, what’s the main takeaway? Photos are important. Make sure you are taking lots of them and sharing them everywhere you can in order to get the most bang for your buck in terms of social media.

If you’re company is looking to visually engage customers in order to increase your ROI, contact Marketing RELEVANCE.

 

By: Builders Digital Experience

As housing continues to recover, it is important to make sure you are building homes with features potential buyers actually want.  The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) recently surveyed 3,682 home buyers to see “What Home Buyers Really Want” when purchasing a home.  The results were quite interesting, as people’s preferences and priorities have changed quite a bit over the past couple of years. 

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the size of new homes has steadily increased over the past three years to 2,524 sq. ft. in 2012.  Additionally, the number of homes with three or more baths and three car garages has gone up.  And as you might expect, the average sales price of homes has increased for the last three years since bottoming out in 2009; the average price in 2012 was $279,000.

It is no secret that resale homes are still outselling new.  In order to capture this share of the market, a new home must have the functionality and features that a used home cannot offer.  The survey suggests removing rooms people don’t use from your floor plans and add that space into places where they spend the most time, such as a separate media room or into a larger master suite.  A kitchen continues to be one of the most important rooms in a person’s house.  Make your kitchens more interactive – 85 percent of respondents want a table space for eating and 76 percent still want a central island. 

We live in a fast-paced society that is always on the go, so why not add features that are convenient and meet the needs of today’s lifestyles?  Seventy-four percent of respondents said they like an open floor plan where the kitchen flows into the living room.  With more people being environmentally conscious, green features have become very important.  Ninety-four percent of buyers said they want Energy Star appliances in their home and 91 percent want an Energy Star rating for the entire home – an older home can have upgrades that are energy efficient, but it will never be as efficient as a new home.  Community amenities featuring resort-style pools, hike and bike trails, great schools in or near the community with easy accessibility to shopping can also have a serious influence on buyers. 

Below is the complete list of the most wanted – and least wanted – characteristics home buyers want in a new home, followed by the percentage:

The Most Wanted List

  • Energy Star-rated appliances — 94 percent
  • Laundry room — 93 percent
  • Energy Star-rating for the whole home — 91 percent
  • Exhaust fan in bathroom — 90 percent
  • Exterior Lighting — 90 percent
  • Bathroom Linen Closet — 90 percent
  • Energy Star-rated windows — 89 percent
  • Ceiling fans — 88 percent
  • Garage Storage — 86 percent
  • Table space for eating in kitchen — 85 percent
  • Walk-in kitchen pantry — 85 percent

The Unwanted List

  • Elevator — 70 percent
  • Golf course community — 66 percent
  • High-density community — 56 percent
  • Only a shower stall in master bath — 51 percent
  • Gated community — 48 percent
  • Mixed-use community — 44 percent
  • Two-story family room — 43 percent
  • Wine cooler — 42 percent
  • Wet bar — 41 percent
  • Laminate countertop — 40 percent
  • Two-story entry foyer — 38 percent
  • Laundry chute — 32 percent
  • Outdoor kitchen — 31 percent
  • Game room — 31 percent
  • His & Her baths — 31 percent
  • Glass front cabinets — 31 percent
  • Countertop — 30 percent

We all know that a new home provides a care-free lifestyle so that homeowners can enjoy their home, not work on it.  Let us help you sell that message to today’s buyers by showcasing your homes with area photos, videos and renderings.  To learn more about our packages, please click here.