Business North July / August 2021

90 | Quality, value for discerning buyers Sue Russell All Legendary homes have a 2.7m stud, 2.2m doors and bathrooms are fully tiled. BUILDING Legendary Homes S hijie Chen runs North-Auckland based Legendary Homes. He, along with two other ‘hands-off’ partners who met initially at university, established the company in 2013 at a time when there was not a lot of confidence in the residential market, given the impact of the global financial crisis. In 2017, a shift in company focus took place, moving away from high-end residential to more entry level bulk projects, where the company purchases upward of 10 sections at a time. “It means we can bring our buyers the very best value for money while creating a really efficient building process, still focussing on top quality. This is our niche now and it is working well for us.” Legendary Homes also started focusing outside of the North-Shore to the west and south of the city. Other efficiencies, such as being able to attach one project manager to 8 – 10 builds at any one time, brought further gains – and cost savings – able to be passed on to buyers. Today Legendary Homes builds upward of 50 homes a year and in 2022, the company has 60 plus sections lined up ready to be built on. Along with first-home buyers Shijie says there’s strong interest from those scaling down, such as retirees. “We also have inves- tors buying our houses to rent.” Working with Shijie is a team of six, includ- ing three project managers an administrator and an accountant. He says working at this size on projects of the scale they now do helps to keep overheads down. “We tend to focus on new subdivisions and buy bulk once sections are available.” During COVID Shijie says he is proud of the fact that the team stayed intact. And like so many flourishing home building businesses Shijie says the biggest challenge at this time is to find the person with the right fit to join the company. “You can’t work to normal hours. That’s the only way to get the work done, so the work ethic has to be very strong and focused.” Asked if, given the track-record of strong growth, he intends to take building activity out of the Auckland area Shijie says the city is a big enough market. “We know the market well here and how it works. That’s key to finding opportunities which is so important.” The point of difference Shijie says from other multi-residential building companies are the specifications throughout. “It means we can bring our buyers the very best value for money while creating a really efficient building process, still focusing on top quality. “ “All our homes have a 2.7m stud and 2.2m doors, bathrooms are fully tiled and when people walk in they know it is a more prestig- ious house.” Legendary Homes has completed 20 houses in Huapai Triangle on the corner of Station and Nobilo Roads, Huapai and is looking to build a further 50 next year. Eventually Huapai Triangle will house up to 2,500 and will include two recreation reserves, a large stream and shared cycle and walkways. “It’s going to be a really lovely area and perfect for those starting out on the property ladder with young families.”