Countryside's share price builds as firm shifts away from high-end homes

Helen Cahill
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House Building Boosted By Help To Buy Scheme And Overseas Investment
The upper end of the housing market has been suffering following tax changes by George Osborne (Source: Getty)

Countryside's share price climbed in morning trading after the UK housebuilder reported financial figures following a strategic shift away from building high-end homes.

The figures

For the year to 30 September, completions were up 28 per cent to 3,389, as compared to 2,657 the year before. Adjusted revenue hit £1.02bn, growth of 32 per cent from £777m. Adjusted operating profit grew 34 per cent, rising from £122.5m to £164.1m.

Read more: London house prices still under pressure from tax changes

At time of writing, Countryside's share price was up 1.4 per cent to 344.2p.

Why it's interesting

Last month, Countryside announced that the average price for its homes had fallen by eight per cent to £430,000 as the housebuilder cut its exposure to high-end properties, a part of the market which has been softening over the past year. The firm said today that the price change was in line with its strategic objectives.

However, the company has been benefiting from an increase in demand fuelled by the government's Help to Buy scheme, and will be in line for a helping hand from the government as Philip Hammond looks to boost the nation's housing supply.

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Anthony Codling, equity analyst at Jefferies International, said: "Countryside produced a strong set of full year results today and as it offers a broader spread of tenure options than most UK housebuilders the group is very well placed to benefit from today's Budget."

What Countryside said

Ian Sutcliffe, chief executive, said: “With completions up 28 per cent, 2017 has been another outstanding year of growth as our mixed-tenure model has met the demands of the housing market. The opportunity in estate regeneration, through our Partnerships division, continues to grow, with our land bank and bid pipeline expanding significantly.

"We remain confident of delivering sector-leading growth in 2018 and beyond.”

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