Far West Industries
Building high-quality homes is front and center in Far West Industries’ operations. “We are not about having the lower building price per square foot,” says Scott Lissoy, president and co-owner of the Santa Ana, Calif.-based company. “Our homes are built in a way that is cognizant of our costs while focusing on quality materials and construction.”
The company foregoes many of the marketing-related bells and whistles of home selling such as large, well-appointed sales trailers or ornately-detailed sales offices, concentrating instead on acquiring and installing top-of-the-line finishes and materials in the model and production homes. “We’re more interested in spending money on permanent features in the homes than building temporary facilities on a construction site that you eventually remove,” he adds. “We won’t spend $40,000 on finished carpentry for a sales office that we know will just be ripped out in the end. That $40,000 is better spent on the level of the standard features of a Far West home.”
Finishes and common features in the company’s homes include solid-surface granite or quartz countertops in the kitchen and all bathrooms, stain grade wood cabinets with hardware, elongated toilets, hand-sanded drywall, polished concrete floors in kitchens and living areas and Bosch® appliances.
The company also reviews electricians’ plans in detail to ensure that homes are wired sufficiently. Typical homes feature multiple fixtures and outlets in garages, ceiling fan outlets in great rooms and bedrooms and connectivity for wall-mounted television sets and other electronic devices. “We don’t believe in skimping on the electrical end,” Lissoy says. “We try to make sure there is adequate electrical in all of our homes so owners don’t have to bring in their own electricians.”
Far West’s homes are also distinguished in their use of environmentally friendly features such as high-efficiency HVAC systems, tankless water heathers, low-E glass windows and drip irrigation landscape systems. Solar roof panels are also standard in the company’s newest communities. “Almost every community we’ve built in the past decade has had a higher level of energy efficiency that far exceeds what code requires,” he adds.
All of Far West’s homes are inspected by third-party inspectors who issue deficiency reports if any issues are found. The company fixes any deficiencies before topping off the homes. “Because of this approach, we’ve not had to deal with the issues other homebuilders have dealt with, such as water intrusion, mold or roof leaks,” Lissoy says.
Founded in 1977, Far West Industries is a privately owned homebuilder serving Southern California that specializes in single-family homes as well as one- to three-story condo and townhome buildings. Far West’s dedication to quality remains much the same today as when it was founded. “I’m proud of the fact that we have been continuously in business since 1977 and that we haven’t wavered from our mantra to build quality homes,” says Lissoy, the company’s second-generation owner.
Financial planning allowed Far West to outlast many of its competitors in the homebuilding arena during the worst of the 2008 to 2009 recession and housing market crash. The company managed the financial storm without laying off a single employee.
“We didn’t build the company just to be a huge production machine, so when the recession hit, we were well-poised to be able to take care of our obligations on loans for communities that were not selling well at the time,” he adds, noting that the company has never abandoned any of the communities it started developing and building. Far West Industries has completed every community it has started in its history.
Far West is leveraging its solid financial standing and applying its penchant for quality home construction to several ongoing communities. In November 2013, Far West opened model homes at Murano, a community of 42 single-family homes in Palm Springs, Calif. The first phase of homes was recently completed, and the entire community is anticipated to be completed in early 2015.
Murano homes range in size from 2,186 to 2,671 square feet in eight different floor plans or palettes. Each home features a pool, spa and the high-quality amenities and fixtures that Far West is known for.
Other Far West communities now under development or construction include The Colony, a 62-townhome community in Azusa, Calif.; The Gatsby, a community of 15 single-family homes in Hollywood; and Tuscany Heights, a community of high-end single-family homes overlooking the Coachella Valley in Palm Springs. The company also plans to develop additional properties it owns in the Coachella Valley and Inland Empire regions of Southern California.
“We have selectively chosen to build in great areas and build great homes rather than just building for the sake of building,” Lissoy says.