The 1990s (Action Packed)

The 1990s (Action Packed)

In celebration of our 80th year, we are revisiting our heritage as we outline the story of how we became one of the UK’s leading housebuilders.

Following the decade of pioneering change that was the 1980s, the 1990s was also action-packed.

In common with most other construction companies at the time, and off the back of its most successful financial year to date in 1989, Miller Homes and the wider Group in general struggled during the recession of 1990.

But it wasn’t all doom and gloom.  At the beginning of the decade Miller Homes announced that they were main sponsors of Heart of Midlothian Football Club.  The club’s jersey bore the Miller Homes name and logo throughout the 1990 / 1991 season, giving the business an enhanced profile.

By 1991 computers were becoming more affordable, portable and powerful, and could communicate with one another.  IT was becoming available to parts of the business which in the past it could not support.  Miller Homes’ technical teams could now use a computer to record details of a site as it was surveyed and then transfer the information to a ground modelling computer on which the site design could be developed, eliminating the expense and time spent previously in drawing up plans.

In 1992 a new portfolio of house types was launched at several developments and the fact that customers were willing to purchase properties off-plan was a reflection of the quality and imagination of these new designs.  Miller Homes recognised that as the demographic structure of society changed, house types which were once successful needed to be modified and developed.  As an example, the new three-bedroom Ettrick had a larger square footage than most of our competitors’ four-bedroom houses, recognising our customers’ desire for more spacious accommodation.

Miller Homes celebrated its Diamond Jubilee in 1994 and as part of the celebrations held a series of lectures throughout the UK given by prominent individuals connected with the construction industry.  Throughout the year, The Miller Group pledged to match any charity money raised by employees pound for pound.  In total, employees covering the length and breadth of the country raised in excess of £26,000 by taking part in activities including a 96 mile walk, bake sales every Friday, cycle rides and even a parachute jump.

In 1997, Miller Homes became the first housebuilder in Scotland to offer potential purchasers the opportunity to speak on the phone with an independent financial adviser during their visit to a development.  This meant purchasers were able to find out in a matter of minutes what mortgage deals were available to them, easing this part of the home buying process.

Finally for the major milestones of the 1990s, in 1999, preparing for the new millennium, Miller Homes launched a new brand identity.  The branding, still being used today, was intended to capture the forward-looking, progressive nature of the company; bold and contemporary reflecting the company’s development and ambitions.

Take a look at our Pinterest board for a range of Miller Homes photographs from throughout the 1990s.