Amy McCormick, national sales manager at Epcon Franchising, discusses new home sales and more in this episode of the Epcon Experts Podcast.
“Making sure your sales team is well versed and fully understands the purchase process is key so that they can set the proper expectations for our buyers“
Host: Today we have with us Amy McCormick, National Sales Manager at Epcon Franchising. Welcome, Amy.
Amy McCormick, National Sales Manager at Epcon Franchising: Thanks for having me.
Host: Amy, from your perspective, what are the most important traits that are necessary for an Epcon Franchise Builder?
Amy: The first thing that comes to mind is a growth mindset. Then again, most of our builders have that or they wouldn’t be looking to grow their business.
The others would definitely be grit and determination. There are a lot of new things that they are going to learn, and there’s going to be challenges along the way, so that grit comes in really, really handy.
Flexibility, things and timelines change, and as long as they can be flexible and keep their eye on the big picture, they’re going to do great.
Host: That all make sense. What is your professional background, Amy? What’s your current role at Epcon Franchising?
Amy: I sold Epcon homes for over eight years. Then was promoted to Regional Sales Manager for the Charlotte, North Carolina region. I manage the sales team, coach the sales team there, and then recently made the switch to franchising.
Now I get to teach our Franchise Builders how to sell and launch communities, like Epcon corporate does.
Host: What brought you to Epcon Communities and what’s kept you here for over a decade now?
Amy: The first thing that comes to mind is the uniqueness of the plans. I love how the homes in the communities differ from typical big box builders.
Host: How do you work with our Franchise Builders around the country? How do you help them in the areas where they need it most?
Amy: I help them form a sales team and prepare them to launch sales for their very first community. From there I help maintain and coach the sales teams.
Host: Let’s switch gears here a little bit. I want to talk about this cake analogy that you’ve referred to in the past. How is selling an Epcon home similar to baking a cake?
Amy: I love that analogy, and I use it often. That’s the main reason why builders choose to franchise, is to get the recipe.
Following the directions, putting the right ingredients in, you’re going to get the same results. I just like it and it helps me keep them on track to follow the recipe.
Host: Absolutely. I love that analogy.
Amy: Me too.
Host: The overall customer experience is obviously very important. How can home builders today create a better sales experience?
Amy: Making sure your sales team is well versed and fully understands the purchase process is key so that they can set the proper expectations for our buyers.
Then having key resources for our buyers’ most common concerns when making the decision to buy.
Host: Once the home sale is complete, the home building process can be a little complicated. What helps builders enjoy high buyer satisfaction after the sale?
Amy: Definitely communication. I can’t stress that enough. Over‑communicating is the best thing you can do. Now more than ever, buyers need builders to provide constant and transparent communication.
We have a proper process for this already in place. From planned meetings with the project managers, weekly calls from sales and project managers to monthly community events. We encourage a few “sprinkles” of unexpected, joyful moments along the way.
Host: I love that, I love little surprises thrown in there for good measure. I’m sure that obviously helps, as buyers are going through that process, to just have those little unexpected things along the way.
What are some things that builders can do to eliminate any confusion or potential buyer’s remorse?
Amy: As I mentioned earlier, setting the right expectations upfront really will set the tone. Reviewing with them what’s happening now and what is going to come next, making it clear that sometimes things do go wrong. If they didn’t, we wouldn’t need project managers.
Sales and construction will be proactive with communication and just letting them know that we’re going to be there for them.
As an example, I like to tell my buyers what I’m going to do for them if something should go wrong before it actually does. Something like, “If we learn that something’s going to cause a delay, I’ll call you right away.”
Host: I love that because you’re making sure that you’re the one being proactive, and you’re not waiting for something to happen in order to come up with that response. You have it ready to go, you know exactly what you’re going to do.
What are salespeople responsible for after the sale?
Amy: Just like I mentioned about some of those meetings, we have sales and construction sit together and make a call to everybody that’s under construction once a week.
They’re definitely going to be doing that. They’re going to make sure that these buyers are coming to community events, homeowner events. That they can start experiencing the lifestyle. They’re going to be a resource for them on who to contact for homeowners association questions or customer service questions. The salespeople are going to be there for the long haul.
Host: I love that you mentioned lifestyle because salespeople are not just selling a home. They’re selling a lifestyle. I know that’s something that’s really important at Epcon. Can you speak to that a little bit?
Amy: You’re definitely going to experience a new type of lifestyle living in an Epcon community. We have that lock‑n‑go availability.
Part of our sales process is to explain what it’s like to live there. One of the reasons we all love selling communities in the first place is because of how happy our homeowners are that they made the change.
Host: Makes a lot of sense. It sounds like you’re just a great help to builders around the country and giving them these strategies that you’ve learned along the way, with all your time in the industry and your time here at Epcon.
Thank you so much Amy for joining us today. It was great talking with you.
Amy: Thanks, I really love what I do.