The Pacific Named “National Attached Community of the Year” at 2017 National Association of Home Builders Awards

January 30, 2017


Trumark Urban also celebrates wins honoring The Pacific for “Best Brochure Urban High Rise Project”,”Best Interior Merchandising of a Model 2,500 to 3,000 SQ. FT” and “Marketing Director of the Year”

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIF. (January 30, 2017) –Trumark Urban is pleased to announce that The Pacific was named “National Attached Community of the Year” at the 2017 National Association of Home Builders’(NAHB) Annual Sales & Marketing Awards Gala. Honoring the best in new home sales, marketing and design, “The Nationals℠” awards are one of the highlights for the NAHB’s annual International Builders’ Show, the premier event for home building industry professionals in North America.

In addition to being recognized as “National Attached Community of the Year”, The Pacific was awarded “Best Brochure Urban High Rise Project” and “Best Interior Merchandising of a Model 2,500 to 3,000 SQ. FT.” Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Trumark Urban, and the lead on The Pacific’s groundbreaking sales and marketing program – Mark Higgins – was named Marketing Director of the Year, one of the industry’s most prestigious accolades.

“We are so pleased to accept these awards from the industry’s most respected institution. To work tirelessly for years on such a highly-anticipated project and to see it embraced by both our new residents and the greater real estate community is incredibly fulfilling,” said Mark Higgins, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Trumark Urban. “The Pacific would not be the success it is today without the unequivocal support of our many partners and the meticulous efforts of the Trumark Urban team.”

The first newly constructed condo residences in San Francisco’s Pacific Heights neighborhood in decades, The Pacific is an architectural marvel, renowned for its collection of five-star service and amenities. Sales for the building’s 76 jewel-box residences began in summer 2016, garnering record-breaking price points. Floorplans include an array of one-, two- and three-bedrooms flats and three-level townhomes each featuring distinctive entertaining spaces, chef’s kitchens, up to 11-ft ceiling heights and floor-to-ceiling windows with picturesque views of San Francisco that span from the Bay, the Golden Gate Bridge, the Presidio, the Marin Headlands, Tiburon and Sausalito, to the Island of Belvedere.

The Pacific is located at 2121 Webster Street, San Francisco CA 94115. For more information, visit A full list of winners can be found at

About The Trumark Group of Companies

Trumark Urban develops high-density condominiums and commercial projects in global gateway markets with a focus on core urban neighborhoods close to jobs, transit and local businesses. With offices in San Francisco and Los Angeles, the firm has a portfolio of more than 1,000 condominiums and over one million square feet representing more than $1 billion of revenue.

The Trumark Group of Companies is a diversified real estate developer and builder with expertise in land acquisition, homebuilding, community design, entitlements and office, R&D and retail development. Trumark has raised more than $460 million of equity and funded 25 projects since the depth of the recession in

Trumark Homes is a visionary, next generation homebuilder with a robust portfolio of new home neighborhoods spanning the state of California. Emphasizing distinction and innovation in every home, Trumark Homes focuses on core infill developments in locations that exhibit strong job growth and provide access to major job centers., TruBlu Blog, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn

Trumark Communities is a residential land development platform focused on acquiring, developing and selling improved lots in master planned communities. Its current pipeline includes 1,500+ lots representing total projected revenue in excess of $300 million. Trumark Communities realized lot sales to builders of over $200 million in 2015.

Trumark Commercial, which builds, leases and sells commercial buildings, has entitled or developed approximately two million square feet of office, R&D, retail and hotel properties in the northern portion of the Golden State.

Property Report: “5 Once Essential Luxury Home Features that Will Soon be Passé:

January 25, 2017

5 Once Essential Luxury Home Features that Will Soon be Passé

What’s in and what’s out for 2017

home inspection

A few years can make all the difference between a must-have and a can-do-without.

Breathless tech advancements, coupled with paradigm shifts in mores and consumption, have had a transformative effect on the way abodes are architected and used. What luxury home owners prized as de rigueur even five years ago are slowly going out of fashion.

Luxury home owners are always raring to be early adopters: on the hunt for the most expensive, state-of-the-art amenities before they trickle down to the masses. “Comfort cooling was once a luxury appliance, but now it is fairly standard across many new developments,” said Peter Preedy, associate director for residential at Jones Lang LaSalle UK. “Certain amenities are tested at the top end of the market, refined and then filtered down. Like catwalk fashions and colours filtering down to the high street over the course of a season.”

The following are just a few new must-have amenities in luxury homes today, and the can-do-without’s they are slowly replacing.

Out: Home theatres
In: VR rooms

girl in vr headset

Tech-savvy homeowners are eschewing home cinemas for the immersive experience of VR. Stas

It looks like having the biggest home theatre today, with all the bells and whistles of a Dolby cinema, is no longer the height of luxury. The truly first-class alternative is to equip your house with a dedicated virtual reality (VR) room, which takes up less space for arguably twice the visual impact.

“Our clients are requesting fully immersive, VR environments because they’re super-busy and want the highest forms of escapism,” architect Duan Tran of KAA Design told Bloomberg. “Right now, you might need to have 1,000 square feet dedicated to a home theater (but it soon) could be a 6-foot-by-6-foot room for the same programming.”

Out: Master bedrooms
In: Private chambers

study room

Master bedrooms are being divided into study rooms, spas, and antechambers.

Cavernous, open-plan sleeping quarters that revolve around the bed may be passing into obsolescence. Taking their place are smaller suites, subdivided into clear-cut, more private areas for changing and bathing, plus such indulgences as a study, library, and spa. “The concept of a master bedroom is becoming obsolete because we have a different relationship with sleep now — we don’t hang out in the bedroom the way we used to,” Jonah Disend, founder of innovation firm Redscout, told Bloomberg.

Factoring into this trend is that millennials are turning out to be inherently prudish. For all their predilection for pornography, millennials still like to hide their modesty. “Millennials don’t like to get naked — if you go to the gym now, everyone under 30 will put their underwear on under the towel, which is a massive cultural shift,” he noted.

Out: Garages
In: Flexi-garages, long private driveways

driveway entrance

Some luxury unit owners in cities enjoy private driveways.

The ride-sharing economy, plus the rise of driverless cars, will reduce parking space by 25 percent in 2050, freeing up 61 billion square feet of extra living space, Bloomberg reported, citing a McKinsey study. Luxury home owners, especially those in vertical developments, are designing their garages for future adaptive reuse as offices or even residential spaces.

Also, as garages get shorter shrift, private driveways are booming in New York City’s apartment blocks.

Out: Showcase kitchens
In: Centralised cooking, catering amenities

ubereats delivery man

An UberEats driver midway to a delivery.

The meteoric rise of UberEats, Blue Apron, Amazon Prime Now, and other app-powered food delivery services has made home-cooking an even more tedious venture than it is. This has led residents to hole up in luxe apartment blocks with in-house catering and takeaway services. One example of this trend is the restaurant at Rafael Viñoly’s 432 Park Avenue, manned by Michelin-starred chef Shaun Hergatt, Bloomberg pointed out.

Out: Helipads
In: Drone pads

drone in the sunset

Drone deliveries will be standard in the future, and so will drone landing pads.

While helipads are still imperative for that quick getaway, luxury home residents have found it ever more urgent to have their own drone landing pads. This is a concept being pioneered in the Los Angeles condominium tower Ten50. With Amazon already priming drones as delivery vehicles, such amenities are guaranteed to be part of house must-haves lists everywhere.


Luxuo: “Property investment in Los Angeles, U.S: Luxury villas from the hills of Belair to the Malibu Coast”

January 22, 2017

Property investment in Los Angeles, U.S: Luxury villas from the hills of Belair to the Malibu Coast

Palace Magazine gives us insights and tips about the luxury property market in Los Angeles

January 22, 2017 | By Sophie Kalkreuth

los angeles luxury property market palace magazine

Los Angeles has long been known for its glamorous celebrity culture and sprawling Hollywood mansions. But the Southern California city is not only home to local luminaries; its sunny lifestyle, Mediterranean climate and first class amenities also make the city an investment target for the global elite. Now, in addition to luxurious villas that spread out over the hills of Belair, Brentwood and down to the Malibu Coast, a renaissance in Downtown LA is bringing luxury living to a previously unpopulated city center.

los angeles luxury property market palace magazine

Home prices in L.A. have appreciated 27 percent since the city’s market started its post-recession recovery in 2012. And this year, the numbers continue to break records, from the average sale prices for condos and single-family houses to the number of sales closed, which rose to the highest second-quarter total in a decade. In Q2 prices were up 4.8 percent, the number of sales was up 6.5 percent, and houses were sitting on the market an average of just five days. According to a recent report from Douglas Elliman, the condo market saw a record median sales price at US$675,000 in the second quarter, while single-family homes came in at US$1,371,000. “Prices have gone up a lot over the past five years,” says Mauricio Umansky, a broker who specializes in the sale of premier properties in LA’s most coveted neighbourhoods. So far this year, he has sold more than 26 properties priced over U$20 million.

los angeles luxury property market palace magazine

Market Trends

  • After five consecutive quarters of yearon-year declines, the number of sales increased for the second consecutive quarter to the second highest Q2 in a decade. There were 2,865 sales, up 6.5 percent from the prior year quarter.
  •  Median sales prices set new records in Q2. Overall median sales increased yearover-year for the 12th consecutive quarter to US$938,000, a new record for the 11 years the metrics have been tracked.
  •  In the luxury market, single-family homes set a new record median sales price of US$5,912,500. In Downtown LA, the Q2 median sales price for condos was up 7.3 percent from the previous quarter, to US$601,000
los angeles luxury property market palace magazine

Along with rising prices Umansky has noted a pickup in the quality of construction and amenities. A home theater is now standard for L.A. mansions he says, though today’s come with cutting-edge DHX sound systems. Homebuyers are also finding new uses for basements — many are being offered with game rooms for poker and billiards as a kind of ‘gentleman’s lounge’. Garages are also being fitted in new ways. “Sometimes there are windows opening to the lower garage level so you can admire your collection from the middle of the house,” he says.

Many luxury residences also feature spa-like amenities, gyms complete with a stream shower, hammam and sauna, as well as expansive walk-closets that Umansky likens to Chanel boutiques. “With the 25,000sf plus homes you have so much space sometimes you run out of ideas.” One of Umansky’s current listings is a 13,565sf house in Belair listed for US$27.5 million. The house has seven bedrooms, ten baths and views extending from L.A. cityscape to the Pacific Ocean. There is a grand foyer with skylights, an open plan living room with two floating glass staircases and a series of glass pocket doors leading to a patio and yard with an infinity pool, outdoor kitchen and outdoor television.

los angeles luxury property market palace magazine

“Belair is super trendy right now,” Umansky says. “You have a lot of land, great views and some very large homes.” Large by Belair standards sometimes means upward of 40,000sf and as large as 100,000sf. Other luxury strongholds include Malibu, Brentwood, Beverly Hills and Homby Hills, while Venice and Hancock Park are considered up-and-coming.

Meanwhile, in Downtown LA, a number of high-end condominiums are bringing integrated, urban living to an area that was primarily offices. Census Bureau data puts Downtown LA’s 2000 population at 27,849. In 2013 the total was almost double at 52,400, and this number is expected to rise to more than 75,000 when all the developments currently under construction are completed. One of the largest developments currently underway is Metropolis Los Angeles, a US$1 billion dollar project from Greenland US Holding Inc., a subsidiary of China’s Greenland Group. The mixed-use project is designed by Gensler Architects and will include three residential towers and a hotel set above a collection of high-end retailers.

“With the evolution of Downtown LA, new establishments opening every month, and a continual changing landscape, we’re seeing tremendous interest,” says Michael Altneu, Vice President of Marketing. The project’s first tower is over 50 percent sold and includes studios, one- and two bedroom residences ranging from 526sf to 1,720sf. Remaining units are priced from US$600,000s to over US$2 million. Metropolis LA also incorporates amenities via a 41,000sf club floor with a resort-style pool framed by cabanas, a landscaped green space, a dog park, fitness centre, conference centre and private screening room.

los angeles luxury property market palace magazine

Ten50, another condominium building coming to downtown aims to offer luxury living on a smaller scale. Built by Trumark Urban, the 25-story tower will be located in South Park and include residences ranging from 700sf one-bedroom units to 3,000sf three-bedroom penthouses. “As Downtown has grown as a self-contained city of sorts, the need for housing across the spectrum has grown,” says Arden Hearing, Managing Director at Trumark Urban. “Our building is targeting a clientele that values a boutique living experience, versus a mega project or larger vertical master plan.”

The project also offers a range of hospitality-style amenities including a pool area with cabanas and outdoor fireplaces, a screening room, gym, yoga garden, even a drone landing pad for Amazon deliveries. Pricing has not been finalized as sales will commence in early 2016 but Mr. Hearing expects strong demand. “We are at the very early stage of what is effectively a new market for housing. There is no other city with 500,000 jobs within a mile and almost no new housing. It will take many years to catch up with this demand.

los angeles luxury property market palace magazine

Los Angeles Fun Facts

  • At US$765.7 billion, the Los Angeles metro area’s economy is ahead of Saudi Arabia, Sweden and Switzerland
  • There are more automobiles than people in LA. Vehicles take up about 24 percent of the city’s ground area
  • Los Angeles has at least 90 stage theatres and over 300 museums, more than any other American city

Unique Homes: “City Lights, Demand for Luxurious High-Rise Living Increases”

January 9, 2017

City Lights, Demand for Luxurious High-Rise Living Increases


January 9, 2017 By Camilla McLaughlin

When Trudy Stambook signed on in 1983 as vice president with the developer of the Meridian, San Diego’s first luxury residential high-rise, there were just a few condominiums downtown — perhaps only 400 units — predominately in low-rise buildings. Now, the number of condo units exceeds 11,000.

“There is a lot of construction activity now under way; many of these projects are for rentals,” she says. “Our population count downtown is getting close to 40,000. The goal is to eventually see a population of 90,000.”

Whether it’s the energy and excitement of an urban environment, diverse nightlife, great restaurants and cultural offerings or simply easy access that takes the hassle out of everyday life, the siren call of cities has never been stronger.

Paul Boomsma, president of Luxury Portfolio International, explains: “Lifestyle and actively enjoying a fulfilled life are core drivers for the affluent consumer today. Urban dwellings, whether in a city center or even in mixed-use, nonurban settings, are driving demand from the wealthy.”

Developers are responding with new and revamped buildings, an extensive menu of ever-enticing and increasingly lavish amenities, inspiring architecture and generous floorplans that rival single-family homes.

One of the last obstacles — lack of access to nature — is also fast becoming a thing of the past. “The inherent limitation of living in a condominium, luxurious or not, is mitigated by architects integrating an indoor/outdoor experience. Disappearing glass wall systems that open interior living spaces to large private balconies and spacious rooftop decks, often incorporating outdoor dining areas and pools, are key parts of this same principle,” says Bob Hurwitz, founder and owner of Hurwitz James Company

“Outdoor living is becoming more and more desired and a sign of premier condo living. Atlanta has always been known for its green space and large backyards, so why should high-rises be any different?” shares Karen Rodriguez, exclusive listing broker for the Residences at the Mandarin Oriental in Atlanta. Balconies here include built-in fireplaces and Wolf gas grills.

No longer limited to top metros, urban living has morphed into a national phenomenon. New York and Miami have been pacesetters, but, in recent years, San Francisco, Los Angeles and even Honolulu are establishing 21st-century paradigms for upscale residences, architecture and amenities.

“Many of today’s best-selling properties tend to feature dramatic design elements. Quite simply, they contain a distinguishing wow factor that makes an impression,” observes Boomsma. Hurwitz adds, “The combination of high land cost and the appeal and premium paid for skyline views is fueling the entire ‘vertical’ building boom.” Increasingly, the best buildings, whether ultra-contemporary or a new take on classic architecture, create a sense of place. “All great cities and all great spaces have a point of view that resonates and remains with us long after we depart, beckoning us to return. Our homes should have the same attraction,” says Ken Fulk, a noted interior designer and creative director for The Harrison, a new luxury tower in San Francisco.

Living Room in The Harrison, San Francisco, ©Charlie Nucci

Finding Roots in History

In Manhattan, ultra-contemporary steel and glass towers dominate recent construction, but several buildings draw upon the city’s rich architectural heritage. The limestone tower rising on the Upper East Side at 520 Park Avenue is as much traditional as it is contemporary. Inspiration, according to architect Robert A. M. Stern, came from classics including the Sherry Netherland and The Pierre, two prewar towers that also face Central Park. Finished with Sarrancolin marble and French walnut paneling, the lobby evokes an elegance synonymous with Manhattan, while the residences with 11-foot or taller ceilings, and huge windows are very much of the present.

In historic neighborhoods on the Upper West Side, new buildings are a rarity, but two luxury boutique condominiums rising on West 77th Street are setting a precedent. The facades present a mix of handmade Danish brick, mahogany and bronze metal accents; terraces are set back and greenery seems to cascade down the exterior — all of which firmly ground the buildings in the setting. With only 26 residences in each, floor plans as large as 5,992 square feet, and elevators that open into individual residences, the buildings have become a prime choice for families.

Primary Differences

Often urban homes are looked at as pied-à-terres, so it’s easy to forget a growing number are primary abodes. In San Diego, Stambook says finding a condo that is suitable for a primary residence can be a challenge. “Many of the newer condos are built for secondary homeowners, and that limits what you can do with them even if you renovate. This can be a dilemma for luxury buyers. Our buildings are designed for primary residents with enormous closets and enough storage for black tie to athletic wear to business attire.” To illustrate the staying power of excellent design, she says a good number of residents have been there for decades, often moving from their original purchase to one or more other residences.

Vertical towers are on the rise in San Francisco, but more than a location on Rincon Hill sets The Harrison apart. Although the building is new and individual residences contemporary, the overall feeling conveys a sense of place, beginning with the lobby. As much a grand salon as an entry, it appears as a two-story, cerused oak library filled with one-of-a-kind furnishings, collected objects and curated art. Here, San Francisco’s history almost seems to unfold in front of you. Referring to amenity spaces as well as the lobby, Fulk says, “The rooms have a nod towards old world San Francisco with its continental flair and elegance — yet they’re modern and fresh.” Individual residences are equally distinctive with an ambiance that could best be described as contemporary with a soft edge, an aesthetic that is evolving as an alternative to the sterile ubiquitous interiors that have been so prevalent.

Roof Terrace at 210 West 77th Street, New York City, ©The Boundary

Residential Transformations

In cities large and small, residential real estate has become a transformative element, a role that formerly was relegated to commercial and office properties. Often new towers are part of larger developments that promise to change sections of a city. In Miami, One Thousand Museum is part of a rising museum district that includes the Perez Art Museum Miami, a performing arts center, and Museum of Science overlooking Biscayne Bay. Zaha Hadid Architects’ first and final residential skyscraper in the Western Hemisphere, One Thousand Museum is establishing a new standard for luxury. It stands as a vertical sculpture comprised of a twisting exoskeleton that contrasts with the glazing. More than 30,000 square feet is devoted to communal areas.

In Honolulu, a team of visionary architects are creating five significant towers in Hawaii’s only LEED Platinum Certified neighborhood, Ward Village. One of the most design-forward is Anaha, which means “reflection of light” — light reflecting off sets of waves inspired the rolling glass facade. Another, Waiea, designed by Vancouver architect James K. M. Cheng, is slated to open in 2016. These buildings set “a new tone for the evolving architecture of Honolulu,” explains Nick Vanderboom, senior vice president of development for the Howard Hughes Corporation. Like many new condominiums, both will have a notable restaurant, including Nobu Honolulu and the first Merriman’s Restaurant on Oahu.

Water and the breezes that are the essence of the oceanfront inspired Regalia in Miami, explains architect Bernardo Fort-Brescia, principal of Arquitectonica. The building appears as a crystalline prism, which floods interiors with natural light. Undulating terraces, each as different as an individual yard, encircle each floor. The facade almost seems to ripple.

When Tishman Speyer Properties was planning Lumina, a new development at Main and Folsom Streets in San Francisco, they relied on the lessons learned from their last project, Infinity, where amenities not only proved to be extremely popular but also sparked a sense of community. With two towers and two mid-rise buildings, Lumina, also designed by Bernardo Fort-Brescia, includes approximately 45,000 square feet of amenities, more than any existing or currently planned luxury community in San Francisco. So complete are the offerings, which range from a Jay Wright fitness center and climbing wall to a fully equipped music practice room — with lighting, sound systems, and instruments such as a Stratocaster Guitar, Fender Bass and keyboards — that residents might have to find an excuse to leave the property. There is a 24-hour business center with conference and board rooms, as well as an extensive rooftop terrace, bi-level club lounge, a 70-foot lap pool, private dining room and a library. An adjacent park is in the works as is a high-end grocer, which will deliver to residents.

Ten50 is the first new high-rise condo tower to be completed in downtown L.A. in over a decade, and the location is a big draw. “Nearly 80 percent of our homeowners currently live or work in downtown Los Angeles. They desire to live in the urban setting that Ten50 and the surrounding area provides, and want to be a part of the future in this vibrant corner of the city,” says Arden Hearing, managing director of Trumark Urban.

Buildings today offer perks that might not be attainable elsewhere. Lumina has the only “Audi at home” car-sharing service on the West Coast, which, Carl Shannon, senior managing director for Tishman Speyer, says, allows residents to live there without a car. Pending FAA and other approvals, One Thousand Museum will have Miami’s first private helipad on a residential tower. Ten50 has a full suite of amenities ranging from a 13,000-square-foot indoor/outdoor lounge to private dining and a screening room. But what sets it apart is the country’s first drone landing pad for air deliveries.

Reports of diminishing demand for ultra-luxury urban residences might be valid in some places, but it is more of a question of supply rather than lack of interest. “As far as the luxury L.A. market is concerned, demand is actually increasing,” says Hurwitz. “For overseas buyers, purchasing a penthouse is very attractive and has advantages over purchasing a single-family residence. For my buyers, these condominiums are almost exclusively part-time residences and being in a full-security building within close proximity to exclusive shopping and the top restaurants is of major appeal. Also, in the case of Beverly Hills, new construction in high-rises is extremely rare, so the units I sold were actually worth substantially more by the time construction was finished and escrows closed.”

Short-term trend or long-term change for buyers? It’s too soon to tell, but there is a good chance that as far as high-end real estate is concerned, the bright lights of the city are not going to dim any time soon.

Ten50 Kitchen, ©steelblue


Alexandria, Va.  Old Town beckons newcomers. New builds include multi-use e-lofts Alexandria and
the Oronoco.

Atlanta  The residences at the Mandarin Oriental brought a new urban aesthetic. 

Austin  The Austonian raised the bar for luxury condos and it still reigns.

Boston  The Millennium Tower – 55 floors, 685 feet — tops buildings with available residences. Others include the Ritz-Carlton, Harbor Towers and the Clarendon. 

Burlingame, Calif.  A prized Bay Area location makes this locale ripe for more urban residences.

Charleston, S.C.  Urban, historic, waterfront is a winning combo here.

Charlotte  Abuzz with new development — 34 different projects and counting.

Chicago  High-rise history began here. Under construction are 41 new buildings. Proposed: the tallest timber tower in the world.

Dallas  New architectural icon, 33-story Bleu Ciel tower, continues the evolution of the skyline and luxury living.

Denver  Riverfront Park, LoDo (lower downtown) are popular for urban residences and high-rises.

Detroit  #DistrictDetroit merges downtown and midtown into walkable area.   

Dubai  Home to the world’s tallest building, the 163-story, mixed-use Burj Khalifa.

Greenwich, Conn.  More than backcountry estates comprise the Greenwich market. Condo sales hold
their own.

Hong Kong  Sets record with the highest number of completed towers over 150 meters tall.

Honolulu  Ward Village, a new mixed-use community, elevates urban living in Hawaii.

Houston  Retail, office and hotel development in the center city brings new multi-family opportunities.

Irvine, Calif.  Master-planned communities and gorgeous innovative buildings are the trend.

Jacksonville  Waterfront and downtown are a perfect combo. City living includes high-rises, lofts and
luxury rentals.   

Jeddah, Saudi Arabia  A 1,000-meter residential tower under construction claims to be the tallest in the world.

Las Vegas   Urban living has new energy. Las Vegas is home to the largest mixed-use developments
in the country.   

Los Angeles  Downtown development takes off. Ten50 pioneers the new L.A. One visionary project, Fifth and Hill calls for individual lap pools cantilevered above the street. 

London  Home to reportedly one of the grandest urban residences – 15,000 square feet in Admiralty Arch.

Miami  One of only a handful of cities incubating innovations in architecture and lifestyle amenities.

Minneapolis  Bounce back from the recession includes brisk demand and new condos such as Stonebridge Lofts.

Nashville  The urban vibe continues to amplify in this city. Most urban residences are condos. Premier buildings: Veridian, Encore and Art Avenue. 

New York  Despite a cooling of sales in the uber-luxury realm, this is still the ultimate urban location.

Orlando  More than Disney makes for a Florida
favorite. Prime buildings include Star Tower and
Sanctuary Downtown.

Palm Beach  The Bristol and other newcomers usher in a new condo era.

Philadelphia  Center City demand continues to grow as the food scene thrives. Top buildings include 1706 Rittenhouse, Kahn Park Place and The Philadelphian.

Phoenix  A shift in suburban to urban development brings lofts and high-rises.

Pittsburgh  Prices and jobs beckon millennials. Top neighborhoods include Cultural District, Riverpac and the area around the Mon Wharf.

Portland, Ore.  A diversity of edgy urban residences makes this a top pick among cities.

Raleigh-Durham  One City Center is Durham’s first residential luxury high-rise.

San Diego  The city now has more than 11,000 condos.

San Francisco  New towers rise around the
Trans Bay Center.

San Jose  A number of new luxury buildings and condos are on the drawing board, including two 18-story towers.

Scottsdale  Optima Camelview Village integrates lush landscaping into every residence.

Seattle  New icons include the 43-story The Mark with a photovoltaic glass crown. On the books is a 33-story twin tower condo development.

Shanghai  Next-gen architecture includes vibrant natural features in the six towers in CITIC Pacific’s high-rise neighborhood.

St. Louis  Building is booming. Upscale apartments include Citizen Park Luxury Apartments.

Tokyo  Ranks No. 4 worldwide for number of buildings over 150 meters tall.

Toronto  Ranks among the top 10 worldwide for number of skyscrapers.

Vancouver  Detached homes are becoming a rarity, fostering multi-family growth.

Washington, D.C.  City living has never been stronger in both D.C. and close-in suburbs.

Sydney  Expect a high-rise boom here with 75 projects under construction or in pre-construction.

New Home Source: “What Homeowners Need to Know about Drone Use in Home Construction”

New Home Source: “What Homeowners Need to Know about Drone Use in Home Construction”

NewHomeSource logo

Posted on January 9, 2017

Drones and New Contsruction

Drones are increasingly being used by homebuilders to gauge development, to market their homes and to help keep homeowners up-to-date on their home’s construction.

Drones have, if you’ll forgive the word, skyrocketed in popularity over the past couple of years.

They combine the fun of model airplanes with practical uses like aerial photography. So, it’s no surprise that drones are being used in an expanding number of ways, both recreationally and commercially, and that includes drone use in home construction and real estate.

“At Trumark Homes, we utilize drones all the way from land acquisition through the marketing stage of the homebuilding process,” says Eric Nelson, vice president of community development for the California-based builder. “We own two drones that we use to select sites and better understand the topography and surrounding neighborhood, monitor construction progress and grading activities.”

Drones for Business Use

Drones have made aerial views of properties more accessible for builders like Trumark Homes to use for tracking construction and sharing images with clients. Renee Stoll, owner of Florida-based Big Red Media LLC and a licensed real estate agent, uses drone videography and photography services to market her listings, but she also works with developer clients who want aerial views of land for possible development.

“The bird’s-eye view gives a perspective not available otherwise, especially for larger properties,” she says.

“People haven’t really experienced what [drone] videos and photos are like,” says Dan Edmonson, founder and CEO of Massachusetts-based Dronegenuity LLC, which provides drone videography and photography for clients, including commercial and residential real estate projects. “The images tend to amaze everyone.”

Edmonson, Stoll and others who use drones commercially must follow the Federal Aviation Administration’s operational rules for business use, known as Part 107. This includes users obtaining a required remote pilot airman certificate.

But what if you, the buyer, want to track your home’s construction progress with a drone? Could you do that? It depends. First, check with your builder for permission to access the build site to ensure you won’t interfere with any work being done.

“We have not encountered this request yet, but would be more than willing to entertain the idea so long as they are operating in a safe way,” Nelson says.

Builders know that interest in drone use is increasing, particularly when it comes to monitoring home construction. While homebuyers are excited to see progress on their home, a construction site is not necessarily safe for looky loos. Drones can change that.

A quick survey of panelists of the New Home Source Insights Panel found that most respondents are open to the use of drones to stay up-to-date on their home’s construction, with one panelist saying they already use a drone to monitor construction.

Know Before You Fly

Before you use a drone, you need to follow the FAA operational rules. As Nelson says, “operating in a safe way” is key here and, just as with the business operation of drones, the FAA regulates personal or recreational use.

“The FAA’s goal is the safety of the national airspace and to protect property and people in the air and on the ground,” says Debbie Esterak, a partner in the Austin, Texas, law office of Rogers, Morris & Grover.

“You don’t need [the airman certificate] for personal use,” Stoll says, “but a lot of the same rules apply. A novice flying a drone needs to be extremely careful. It’s very easy to crash into a tree or piece of construction equipment and do damage to the drone and other items.”

The FAA, which calls drones “small unmanned aircraft systems,” lists its safety guidelines for recreational drone use. Most are fairly common sense, such as the following:

1. Keep your drone in eyesight at all times.
2. Don’t fly in adverse weather conditions (unless you want a crashed drone).
3. No careless or reckless operation and no operating under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
4. Don’t fly intentionally over unprotected people or moving vehicles.
5. Don’t fly over people in areas where there is an expectation of privacy without the person’s permission.
6. Contact the control tower before flying within five miles of an airport or helipad.

Privacy of other residents is a big concern, so it’s important that drone users be aware of any privacy laws related to drones (on top of the FAA rules) in their state, says Esterak.

The restriction of flying near an airport is a major safety consideration, particularly for aircraft that are landing or taking off. Even if you ask the control tower for permission, the tower doesn’t have to give it, “regardless of the height you want to go,” Esterak says.

So, it’s important to be aware of your surroundings, and if people are already living in your community, be a good neighbor and let them know you’ll be sending your drone up. Even if they’re not out in their backyard, it’s still a nice courtesy. It could also be a great way to connect with new neighbors.

You should also be aware that the FAA requires all owners of drones weighing between .55 and 55 pounds to register online before sending their drone up for a spin.

To learn more about the FAA regulations (business and recreational), visit or download the FAA’s free app, B4UFLY, available for iPhone and Android devices.