J.D. Power and Associates Reports:
Urbandale Ranks Highest in Customer Satisfaction with New-Home Builders in Ottawa-Carleton
WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif.: 6 September 2006 — Urbandale ranks highest in satisfying new-home buyers
in the Ottawa-Carleton region, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2006 Canadian New-Home Builder
Customer Satisfaction StudySM released today.
The study, which measures the overall satisfaction of home buyers throughout the new-home purchase and early
ownership experience, is conducted in the Ottawa-Carleton region for the first time in 2006. Owners are asked to
evaluate their builder in the following areas: sales staff, design centre, home readiness, customer service,
price/value, physical design, home quality and location. Of these eight factors, home readiness, customer service
and home quality are the most important drivers of new-home buyer satisfaction. Combined, these three drivers
contribute more than 60 percent to overall satisfaction.
Urbandale receives top ratings from customers in the sales staff, home quality, customer service and physical
design factors. Monarch follows Urbandale in the rankings and receives the highest ratings from new-home
buyers in home readiness, price/value and location. Richcraft ranks third overall and performs particularly well in
the design centre experience.
The study finds that nearly 60 percent of buyers are either “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with their new-home
experience. While buyers in Ottawa-Carleton are most satisfied with the location of their new home and
community, they are least satisfied with the price/value of both the home and the upgrades purchased.
“In the end, producing a satisfied home buyer depends on the builder’s ability to deliver an ownership experience
that exceeds the expectations of the customer,” said Darren Slind, senior director of the new-home builder and
performance improvement practices at the Canadian office of J.D. Power and Associates. “Leading Ottawa-
Carleton builders, such as Urbandale, Monarch and Richcraft, understand this requirement and continuously look
for ways to more closely align their customer handling and home quality processes to the expectations of their
customers, which directly impacts satisfaction.”
The study also finds that there are significant differences between how first-time and previous home owners select
their new-home builder. Although design/floor plan and community location are the most important purchase
motivators among all buyers in the Ottawa-Carleton market, first-time buyers, for example, are particularly more
sensitive to price when compared to buyers who previously owned a home.
The rewards for builders who deliver an exceptional new-home experience are customers who are more likely to
repurchase from the builder and recommend their builder to others. Highly satisfied home buyers recommend
their builder to nearly twice as many people (6.9 recommendations per home owner) compared to the
recommendations of new-home buyers whose satisfaction is just “average” (3.7).
“In the intensely competitive Ottawa-Carleton market, getting on the consideration list of potential buyers will be
of great concern for all builders especially if market conditions soften, and the balance of power shifts from
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builder to buyer,” said Slind. “Builders with highly satisfied customers will definitely differentiate themselves
from their competitors.”
The study also highlights several practices that builders can implement to enhance customer satisfaction. For
example, offering customers tours of their home during construction and delivering the home when promised or
earlier both have a significant impact on overall satisfaction.
The 2006 Canadian New-Home Builder Customer Satisfaction Study is based on the responses of 984 buyers
within the Ottawa-Carleton region who purchased newly built single-family detached, semi-detached and town
homes. All buyers surveyed closed their home purchase in the 2005 calendar year. J.D. Power and Associates also
measures customer satisfaction with new-home builders in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). For more
comprehensive information on Ottawa-Carleton and GTA builders, visit the J.D. Power Consumer Center at
About J.D. Power and Associates
Headquartered in Westlake Village, Calif., J.D. Power and Associates is an ISO 9001-registered global marketing
information services firm operating in key business sectors including market research, forecasting, consulting,
training and customer satisfaction. The firm’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 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 290 offices in 38 countries. Sales in 2005 were $6.0 billion. Additional information is
available at http://www.mcgraw-hill.com.
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NOTE: One chart follows.
J.D. Power and Associates
2006 Canadian New-Home Builder
Customer Satisfaction Study SM
Overall Satisfaction Index Ranking
(Based on a 1,000-point scale)
300 400 500 600 700 800 900
Included in the study but not ranked due to small sample size are: Ashcroft, Braebury, Tartan and Valecraft.
Source: J.D. Power and Associates 2006 Canadian New-Home Builder Customer Satisfaction StudySM
Charts and graphs extracted from this press release must be accompanied by a statement identifying
J.D. Power and Associates as the publisher and the J.D. Power and Associates 2006 Canadian New-Home
Builder Customer Satisfaction StudySM as the source. No advertising or other promotional use can be made
of the information in this release or J.D. Power and Associates survey results without the express prior
written consent of J.D. Power and Associates.