With 30 years of experience behind them, Michael Maples and Gregg Nelson look forward to well-being and technology making waves in the housing market, with Trumark leading the way
Builder & Developer (B&D): Congratulations on your 30th anniversary! What has it been like to grow Trumark into one of the nation’s most recognized homebuilders?
Michael Maples: Creating Trumark Companies and evolving it into the multi-divisional homebuilding company that it is today has been nothing short of incredible. We have diversified more than we would have ever anticipated — Trumark now handles master plans, urban, suburban, and mixed-use.
Gregg Nelson: When we first began, we were young with not a lot of experience or money, yet we were hard-working and ambitious. We saw a need in the real estate market for thoughtfully designed homes that didn’t follow what had been delivered in the past, but rather delivered what prospective homebuyers seek in their future homes, whether they think it’s possible or not. Funny enough, we’ve never been very good at celebrating accomplishments because we are always looking at the mountain ahead — instead of thinking “We’ve made it!,” we are always thinking, “There’s still so much to do!”
B&D: What sort of trends can we expect for 2018?
GN: In recent years, we have explored designing communities for driverless cars, utilizing land by building upward instead of outward, incorporating technology around every corner in the home, and designing flexible floor plans. The biggest trend we are capitalizing on today is in recognition of Baby Boomers’ desire for a new standard in “age-qualified communities” that break the traditional mold and deliver a revolutionary lifestyle fit for the next wave of retirees.
B&D: You recently launched TruLiving, can you tell us more about it?
GN: TruLiving is an innovative new home community model designed to revolutionize the age-qualified real estate market. Featuring the first age-qualified community amenity in the country to be registered under the WELL Building Standard® by the International WELL Building Institute, TruLiving will deliver features that benefit health and well-being by aligning with the seven concepts of the WELL Building Standard — air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort and mind. More than just a healthy community standard, TruLiving will also redefine the way people see and approach the 55+ market, attracting buyers with a real yet surprisingly new way to live life and live it well.
MM: Wellness will stand front and center at every TruLiving community, offering a mix of fitness, entertainment, connectivity and well-being curated to help residents live a life of possibilities. A robust enrichment program will fuel inspiration, with activities ranging from community volunteer opportunities and cultural trips to educational classes such as cooking and music. Each TruLiving community will take active, healthy living to the next level, providing amenities geared toward fitness and enjoyment of the great outdoors. Lastly, innovative technology will make life simpler with a dedicated app that allows residents to view event calendars, schedule an exercise class, and more.
B&D: Having been a part of the industry for the past 30 years, how do you see the industry changing?
GN: Land is scarcer than ever in the core areas. Because of that, we are seeing more high-density housing in the core markets. We believe technology will continue to have an impact on the housing business in the future, not only increasing home automation, but leading to more automated construction processes, as well as potential transportation technology (driverless cars, VTOL craft, and Hyperloop) that will have an impact on where homeowners will choose to live.
B&D: What are some new projects that Trumark is excited about?
MM: Wow — where to start? In Southern California, we closed out at Upcoast in Costa Mesa earlier this year, and also have communities at Tribella in Santa Ana, Bristol in Chino Hills, Founders in Chino Hills, and, perhaps the latest trendsetting SoCal community, Lewis + Mason in Anaheim, which is the first for-sale product in the Platinum Triangle. In Northern California, we’ve recently celebrated a major sales milestone at Glass Bay in Newark and Perch in Downtown Dublin. We also have active projects at our 806-home master plan community Wallis Ranch in Dublin and our first TruLiving age-qualified community located in Manteca.
B&D: What’s next for Trumark?
MM: We plan to continue our path of growth for the next five to 10 years, and evaluate next steps at that time. Trumark was recently named one of the fastest growing private builders nationwide over the last two years, and we are honored to lead the way in alleviating the housing shortage. In the next decade, we want to be at the forefront of designing and developing the next generation of mixed-use developments in urban and suburban locations. Our goal is to create amazing, inspiring communities for both the Boomer and Millennial generations’ next stage of adventure — it will not look like the past.