News

04.11.11

Del Webb Sweetgrass Grand Opening Signals Renewed Optimism From the Baby Boomer Housing Market

More than 3,000 Baby Boomers Visit Newest Del Webb Community in Greater Houston;
More than Half of Homesites Available in the First Phase Now Sold Out

HOUSTON, April 12, 2011 - Del Webb Sweetgrass, a community for active adults over the age of 55, welcomed 3,000 visitors during its grand opening weekend event. That number of prospective homebuyers in one day is typically seen over the course of several months in other communities in the Greater Houston area. The result of the high traffic and visitors since its grand opening has resulted in more than half of the new home sites being sold out in the neighborhood’s first phase.

The new community in Richmond, southwest of downtown Houston, is the first Del Webb community in the area and will have approximately 1,500 homes.

“Many of these prospective homebuyers have been most impressed with the lifestyle and activities offering that help foster an active and engaging life in retirement, especially in our future multi-million, 27,000-square-foot amenity center,” said Kimberly Paulus, general manager of Del Webb Sweetgrass. “The community’s activities and amenities match up with perfectly with the Baby Boomers own personal interests and aspirations. They’ll find something different to do every day.”

“Across the country, we are seeing a renewed sense of optimism from the Baby Boomers who are shopping for their second home or for their future home in retirement,” added Scott Payne, national vice president of sales for Del Webb. “We have a more diverse floor plan line-up that caters to Boomers looking to downsize from their current home or Boomers wanting large entertaining spaces with formal living spaces and weekend visitors.”

In less than 30 days, Del Webb Sweetgrass has already sold more than 60 percent of the first phase of new home sites, and the company expects the tremendous amount of traffic and sales generated in just a few short weeks to continue for the remainder of the year. The first homeowners are expected to move in the month of May.

Staying Put in Texas
According to Paulus, out of 7,000 prospective homebuyers, more than 90 percent hail from the Greater Houston area. The others come from various cities across the state of Texas or want to move back to Houston to be near their family and friends.

Del Webb Sweetgrass mirrors a growing trend among active adults, Baby Boomers and empty nesters who not only want access to social, fitness and educational offerings, but also want the legendary Del Webb lifestyle within close proximity of their current residence. These “in-place” retirees want to remain connected to their friends, doctors, places of worship, children and grandchildren.

Dolores Grissom of Houston is one of the pioneers of Del Webb Sweetgrass and likes that she will now be only five minutes from her daughter’s family. She has long waited for Del Webb to show up in Greater Houston and has been financially preparing to make the move into a new Del Webb home. “I wanted to move to a Del Webb community because of its reputation, the quality homes, the lifestyle activities and the opportunity to develop new friendships. Since the community opened, there is a sense of community that has been created by the staff of Del Webb through the activities and meeting the new residents,” said Grissom.

“Location in a metropolitan city like Houston where there are employment opportunities is part of the success of Del Webb Sweetgrass and many other Del Webb communities, such as Dallas and San Antonio,” said Paulus. “Many of our future residents will continue to work. In fact, across the country, we see about 50 percent still engaged in the workforce.”

Local Economic Impact Substantial

According to Paulus, from property taxes on homes to construction materials to retail spending, Del Webb Sweetgrass is estimated to have a positive net fiscal impact on the local economy of more than $450 million over the course of building out the community. “From property taxes on homes to construction materials to retail spending, Del Webb Sweetgrass’ positive economic impact to the region is substantial,” says Paulus. “Plus, Sweetgrass will place no demands on the local school system, which is an added benefit of an active adult community.”

U.S. Economic Development Administration studies show that one household in an active adult community is equivalent to 3.7 factory jobs in terms of an economic benefit. Using that ratio, Del Webb Sweetgrass will have a positive economic benefit comparable to the addition of over 5,550 jobs to the area.

About Del Webb Sweetgrass
Del Webb Sweetgrass is an active adult community with approximately 1,500 single-family homes on more than 500 acres of rolling topography. The community is located in Richmond, just 25 miles south of downtown Houston. Homes range from 1,130-2,640 square-feet and are priced from the $130s. Residents enjoy a full complement of lifestyle amenities, directed by a full-time activities director, including indoor and outdoor swimming pools, bocce ball, tennis and pickleball courts, fishing pavilion, amphitheatre, outdoor BBQ area, walking trails, and various crafts classes and social activities held at the community’s 27,000-square-foot recreation center, scheduled to be open in late Spring 2012.

Del Webb Sweetgrass is located at FM 762 and US 59 South, Richmond, TX 77469.

For more information about Del Webb Sweetgrass and the active adult lifestyle it fosters, visit delwebb.com/Sweetgrass or call toll free at call 877.695.9338.

About Del Webb
Award-winning Del Webb active adult communities provide a vibrant, enriched lifestyle for those ages 55 and older, creating an unmatched experience for “retirement.” Del Webb communities began with the original Sun City which opened outside Phoenix, Arizona in 1960 and have grown to include more than 50 communities currently open for new home sales in 21 states. Del Webb is the best-known brand of active adult communities in America and draws on its 50 years of experience of providing residents an engaging life which fulfills their creative, physical, mental, and social needs. For more information on Del Webb, see www.delwebb.com.

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