Dwight Schar is a billionaire philanthropist who ran Mid-Atlantic homebuilding operations for Ryan Homes before embarking on his entrepreneurial journey in 1977. He is the founder of the company now known as NVR, Inc, having debuted it on the public trading floor in 1986 – infusing the company with the capital it needed to buy out Ryan Homes the following year.

Dwight Schar’s ethos “buy low, sell high” is a concept that helped him to establish NVR, Inc. as a company that has now been trusted by more than 535,000 homeowners across the United States.

Dwight Schar first became interested in the real estate industry while working as a first-semester teacher in the mid-1960s. Hailing from Ohio, the recent Ashland University graduate was in the process of purchasing his first house when he was offered a job by the realtor who sold him his home. Taking his first steps into a career that would eventually earn him billions, Dwight Schar left teaching and never looked back.

Over the years, Schar and his company shifted focus from selling homes to development projects and homebuilding operations. He held his post as head of Mid-Atlantic homebuilding operations for Ryan Homes until 1977, when he launched his own business. Forced to leave the homebuilding industry for two years due to contractual obligations, Schar reemerged in 1980, founding Northern Virginia Land and Homes Co., the forefather of NVR, Inc. The company expanded its operations, adding a mortgage service company in 1984 and becoming a public company in 1986. In 1987, NVR, Inc. acquired Ryan Homes for a reported $312 million, culminating in the creation of the largest homebuilding company in the whole of the United States.

Dwight Schar explains that “real estate is pretty simple,” subscribing to the maxim of “buy low, sell high.” In addition, Schar points to location and holding power as critical factors, citing holding power as “just as important as location” and key to his success.

Today, NVR, Inc.’s corporate umbrella includes Ryan Homes, NVHomes, Heartland Homes, and NVR Mortgage. NVR, Inc. operates two business arms: mortgage banking and homebuilding. As a corporate entity, the company provides various support functions to its subsidiaries, including vital human resource specialists, sales and marketing support, and an advanced IT department that provides a network of resources utilized by NVR, Inc. holdings. As of November 2023, NVR, Inc. held a market capitalization of $19.69 billion and a closing stock price of $6,195.06 per share, making it America’s second-most-expensive stock behind Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc., according to Forbes.

Claire Preece