These may be rocky times for much of the homebuilding industry. But for those with imagination and aggressiveness, the sky is the limit. Just look at Ryland Group Inc., the Columbia-headquartered residential development company. Its year-old housing export arm is entering the new and tricky -- but potentially lucrative -- real estate market in Russia.
Overseas sales is a new, promising field for Ryland, one of the nation's biggest home builders. A year ago, it formed a subsidiary to handle sales to Israel, where 1,300 homes made of American materials have been erected. The new Russian venture, at least initially, will be small by comparison. The first stage consists of building some 20 model homes on lots north of St. Petersburg.
As another Maryland entrepreneur, Keith Anthony, has realized, Eastern Europe is a largely untapped housing market. Mr. Anthony, an Anne Arundel County builder, has been selling modular home kits to Poland, where they are coveted by the newly affluent because of their American refrigerators, stoves and wall-to-wall carpeting.