Thursday 7 November 2019 12:38 pm

Persimmon blames sales drop on customer satisfaction drive

Housebuilder Persimmon today blamed a drop in first half sales volumes on the implementation of a new customer care improvement plan. 

Under the plans Persimmon has restricted the release of new homes for sale until construction has reached a more advanced stage, meaning sales declined six per cent year on year to 7,584 homes.

Read more: Persimmon profit falls as it tries to tack quality complaints

The move also led to five per cent lower average active sales outlets year on year at about 350 sites. 

The developer said it anticipated the trend will continue into the second half of the year, although sales are expected to be higher due to a seasonal spike.

Persimmon said consumer confidence has remained resilient despite the uncertainties surrounding Brexit due to strong levels of employment, low interest rates and a competitive mortgage market. 

Average weekly private sales reservation per site was 0.67, in line with last year, and forward sales dipped slightly compared to last year from £987m to £950m. 

“I am confident that the continued successful implementation of our detailed customer care improvement plans together with our strengthened forward build position, healthy forward sales, robust balance sheet and industry-leading land holdings provide a sound platform for the successful future development of the group,” chief executive Dave Jenkinson said. 

Read more: Persimmon apologises over Help to Buy faults

David O’Brien, equity analyst at investment bank Goodbody, said Persimmon had reported “solid results”.

“Overall, this is a comforting statement and the housebuilder continues to offer an attractive risk return profile,” he said.

Main image credit: Getty