The Wichita Area Builders Association’s Spring Parade of Homes, which starts Saturday, will comprise the largest number of houses the semi-annual event has featured in several years.
“I would say this is more than we’ve had going back about six parades,” WABA president Wess Galyon said of the 140 houses that are part of this year’s spring parade.
It’s a sign of continuing improvement in the area’s new-home market.
“It is better overall,” Galyon said. “We’re seeing more specs being built, and there’s larger inventory now than last year. Builders are more optimistic.”
Last year, 624 new homes were sold in the area, the highest number since 2010, according to the South Central Kansas Multiple Listing Service.
Prices of the homes featured in this spring’s parade are between $100,000 and $2.5 million.
The parade is free to the public and runs over the next three weekends, ending April 26.
The houses are in Wichita and 11 surrounding cities: Andover, Bel Aire, Derby, El Dorado, Goddard, Maize, Mulvane, Newton, Park City, Rose Hill and Valley Center.
The parade, held each spring and fall, provides a boost to new-home sales, said Jim Wood, broker of Summit Properties.
“It drives a lot of of traffic, kind of kicks off the spring selling market,” said Wood, whose firm is marketing eight houses in the parade. “It exposes people to the latest floor plans, decor and design, that type of thing.”
Wood said the parade does lead to some people purchasing homes immediately, but more often it leads to new home sales two to three months following the parade.
More information on the parade, including a map, can be found at wabahome.com