by Patrick L. O’Toole, Publisher and Editorial Director
From a national viewpoint, the home building industry in 2010 can be described as anything but vibrant. Then again, a national viewpoint obscures the relative strength of many smaller markets and submarkets around the country that have proven to be much more resilient than one might expect. Such is the case with the four markets in Southern Indiana and Western Kentucky where Jagoe Homes is the big builder in town. Those markets have provided just enough underlying strength to provide fertile ground for market-share gains by a home building company that seems to have been preparing for just such a moment to shine. This year, Jagoe will build and close 289 homes priced from the $110,000s on up to custom homes in the high $400,000s, generating $47.3 million in revenue while maintaining an average net margin better than industry benchmarks.
Brothers Bill and Scott Jagoe, partners in Owensboro, Ky.-based Jagoe Homes, are an overnight success, 25 years in the making. Attending every International Builders’ Show since the 1970s when they worked for their father, they have consistently sought out best practices and invested in the best consulting advice available — from Lee Evans and Chuck Shinn to Fletcher Groves, Bob Schultz, and Scott Sedam. According to Sedam, who is a columnist for this magazine, it is the Jagoe’s unrelenting quest to improve along with their quick action on new initiatives that separates them from other builders with equal levels of ambition and drive.
“They make a decision one day and they are executing on it the next,” says Sedam. “That is why they are as good a builder today as you will find anywhere.”