J.D. Power and Associates Reports: NuVista Homes Ranks Highest in Satisfying New-Home Buyers in the Calgary Single-Family Home Market; Landmark Homes Leads in the Edmonton Single-Family Home Market



    TORONTO, Sept. 20 /CNW/ - NuVista Homes and Landmark Homes rank highest
in satisfying buyers of new single-family homes in Calgary and Edmonton,
respectively, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2008 Alberta
Single-Family New-Home Builder Customer Satisfaction StudySM released today in
association with The Alberta New Home Warranty Program.
    Conducted in the province of Alberta for the first time in 2008, the
study measures new-home buyer satisfaction throughout the entire purchase and
early ownership experience among builders who are members of The Alberta New
Home Warranty Program. In the study, buyers are asked to evaluate their
builder in eight factors. In order of importance, they are: home readiness;
service/warranty staff; sales process/staff; construction/site team;
workmanship/materials; price/value; physical design; and design process. J.D.
Power and Associates also conducts a multi-family new-home builder study in
Alberta.
    NuVista Homes achieves a score of 786 to rank highest in new-home buyer
satisfaction in the Calgary market and performs particularly well in five of
the eight factors that contribute to overall satisfaction: home readiness;
service/warranty staff; sales process/staff; construction/site team; and
workmanship/materials. Innovations by Jayman (731) and Baywest Homes (704)
follow NuVista in the Calgary market rankings.
    Landmark Homes achieves a score of 693 to rank highest in new-home buyer
satisfaction in the Edmonton market, performing particularly well in five of
eight factors that contribute to overall satisfaction: home readiness;
service/warranty staff; sales process/staff; construction/site team; and
workmanship/materials. Homes By Avi (668) and Sterling Homes (650) follow
Landmark in the Edmonton market rankings.
    "We congratulate the highest ranked builder members and commend them for
a job well done," said Schuyler Wensel, president and CEO of The Alberta New
Home Warranty Program. "We believe that the true value of the customer
satisfaction study lies in the knowledge it provides to both home buyers and
our builder members. This knowledge allows them to make better and more
informed decisions."
    The study finds that overall satisfaction in the Calgary new
single-family home market is 625 on a 1,000-point scale, while satisfaction
averages 612 in the Edmonton market. Overall new-home buyer satisfaction has a
particularly strong impact on the likelihood of customers to recommend their
builder. Buyers who report being "delighted" with their home-buying experience
make five times more positive recommendations to their friends, relatives and
colleagues than buyers who say they are "indifferent" about their home-buying
experience.
    "When prospective buyers are in the market for a new home, they often
look to a trusted source to assist with their decision-making process, and
builder referrals are a key source of information," said Marc Thibault, senior
manager of the real estate practice at the Canadian office of J.D. Power and
Associates. "In many cases, buyers tend to purchase from builders with a track
record of high customer satisfaction performance. Testimonials provide
consumers with the confidence they need to make one of the most significant
financial decisions of their lives. In the future, buyers also will have
access to Power Circle Ratings on the Web sites of both J.D. Power and
Associates and The Alberta New Home Warranty Program, which will provide
indicators of a builder's customer satisfaction performance to further assist
with their difficult decision."
    The study also finds that less than one-half of new single-family homes
in the Alberta market (47%) are delivered when promised. Among those homes
that are late, the average delay is nearly 4 months (15 weeks). When delays
occur, new-home buyers are most satisfied with builders that proactively
communicate the construction status of their home throughout the building
process-not just at the beginning and end.
    "The negative impact of delays on overall satisfaction can be lessened
when the builder is proactive with status updates, despite whether
construction is on schedule or not," said Thibault. "New-home buyers invest
large amounts of time, energy and money in the purchase of their new
residence, and delays can be both costly and inconvenient. Therefore, buyers
need to be kept apprised of construction progress in order to coordinate the
many details involved in taking possession of their new home."
    The 2008 Alberta Single-Family New-Home Builder Customer Satisfaction
Study is based on responses from 5,765 buyers within the Province of Alberta
who purchased newly built single-family detached and semi-detached homes. The
study was fielded from July 2007 to July 2008. For comprehensive information
on Alberta, Greater Toronto Area and Ottawa-Carleton builders, visit the J.D.
Power Consumer Centre at www.jdpower.com/canada.

    About The Alberta New Home Warranty Program

    The Alberta New Home Warranty Program was established in 1974 by Alberta
home builders to provide a package of warranty protections and encourage
improved performance for the new home building industry. In addition to
providing warranty services, The Program offers its Builder Members an array
of tools and services to enhance their expertise and supports the relationship
between Builder Members and their homebuyers. The Program has over 700 Builder
Members who are committed to the business of home building. Additional
information and a complete list of participating builders can be found at
www.albertanewhomewarranty.com.

    About J.D. Power and Associates

    Headquartered in Westlake Village, Calif., J.D. Power and Associates is a
global marketing information services company operating in key business
sectors including market research, forecasting, performance improvement,
training and customer satisfaction. The company's quality and satisfaction
measurements are based on responses from millions of consumers annually. J.D.
Power and Associates is a business unit of The McGraw-Hill Companies.

    About The McGraw-Hill Companies

    Founded in 1888, The McGraw-Hill Companies (NYSE:   MHP) is a leading
global information services provider meeting worldwide needs in the financial
services, education and business information markets through leading brands
such as Standard & Poor's, McGraw-Hill Education, BusinessWeek and J.D. Power
and Associates. The Corporation has more than 280 offices in 40 countries.
Sales in 2007 were $6.8 billion. Additional information is available at
http://www.mcgraw-hill.com.

    
    No advertising or other promotional use can be made of the information in
    this release without the express prior written consent of J.D. Power and
    Associates. www.jdpower.com/corporate

    NOTE: Overall Satisfaction Index Ranking for Calgary and Edmonton
    available on request.
    






For further information:

For further information: Media Relations Contacts: Trevor Beckman, Cohn
& Wolfe, Calgary, Alberta, (403) 228-6688, trevor.beckman@cohnwolfe.ca;
Syvetril Perryman, J.D. Power and Associates, Westlake Village, Calif., (805)
418-8103, syvetril.perryman@jdpa.com

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