A new residential building company has entered the Albuquerque market.
Former co-owner of Twilight Homes Michael Fietz is the force behind Westway Homes, which officially launched in December.
Fietz decided to branch off from Twilight and start his own business. He said there wasn’t a single trigger that sparked Westway, but he found himself ready to start something with a “structure I felt was right for me.”
Westway is an Albuquerque-based company that focuses on single-family residences from Belen to Bernalillo. In 2017, single-family detached home sales rose 6.9 percent from 2016 to 11,477 units, with the median sale price also rising 3.8 percent to $196,900, according to Greater Albuquerque Association of REALTORS data.
Fietz says Westway is moving full-steam ahead and began construction on its first home in its first month. Westway’s goal is to have 25 homes out of the ground by March and to have 70 homes built in the market in its first year. Some of its projects include a 100-lot subdivision in Bernalillo and residential work at the Mesa Del Sol project.
Westway has a full-time staff of seven right now.
Fietz, who has been in home building since 2010, says he financed the company through private funding he called "friends and family financing." He said right now the company isn’t reliant on banks but noted "it’s a capital intensive industry and we may in the future."
Fietz, who is also the president of the Home Builders Association of Central New Mexico, said a hurdle the industry as a whole is facing right now is a skilled labor shortage.
Business First previously reported other builders were noticing the labor shortage too, competing against the Facebook project for skilled trade workers still available in the state. ABF reported Facebook’s Los Lunas data center is slated to create around 50 long-term jobs, in addition to around 200 to 300 construction jobs for its initial buildout. As of June, Facebook officials reported more than 80 percent of the 150 workers on the site each day being from New Mexico.
Fietz said he hopes to combat the labor shortage through loyal, strategic alliances with subcontractors.
New Mexico Homebuilders
Ranked by full-time employees
Rank Business name full-time employees 1 PulteGroup (Del Webb, Pulte Homes, Centex) 70 2 Pavilion Construction LLC 30 3 Abrazo Homes 25 View This List