Bovis boss hails strongest order book in years

 
City A.M. Reporter
BOVIS Homes said its order book was at its strongest state in many years and that it was seeing robust demand for its homes in the early weeks of 2014, as buyers backed by the government helped boost the housing market.

In a trading update yesterday, issued ahead of its full year results, the housebuilder said it had 1,377 forward sales marked for 2014 delivery as of 1 January, 77 per cent higher than at the same point last year.

“We delivered significant growth in profits and returns as a result of our continued strategy of growth through investment in high quality consented and strategic land. Our forward order book is in its best position for many years,” Bovis boss David Ritchie said.

The group said it expects to post a “significant” rise in profits in 2013 in line with market expectations of £74m to £79m.

It completed 26 per cent more private homes compared to the prior year, while a move to build more lucrative family homes in higher value, south England areas boosted its average sales price by 14 per cent to £195,100.

Its operating profit margin over the year rose to approach 15 per cent, up from 13.3 per cent in 2012, it said.

Britain’s housebuilders have enjoyed a strong return in buyer demand over the past year thanks to a government move to help aspiring homeowners, which has stoked demand for their newly built homes and wider market sentiment.

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