Housebuilder hoping for record breaking profits thanks to ‘encouraging’ start

PUBLISHED: 10:15 16 January 2019 | UPDATED: 11:05 16 January 2019

Bovis Homes regional MD Steve Jones at their Park Farm site in Wymondham.

Bovis Homes regional MD Steve Jones at their Park Farm site in Wymondham. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2018

Bovis Homes has said it is hoping to report a record year of profits as the housebuilder saw “encouraging” early signs for trading in 2019.

The company, which is in the process of developing new homes in Costessey and Wymondham, said it is set to see profits for 2018 that are slightly ahead of market expectations after a “significant step-up” in operating margins.

Bovis is working on two and three bedroom homes in Costessey’s Woodland Park, and three, four and five bedroom houses in Wymondham’s Birch Gate.

The business has started the year with forward sales of 2,681 units with a value of £521m.

It said the UK housing market “remains strong with customer demand for new homes supported by attractive mortgage finance and government initiatives”, in particular the Help to Buy scheme.

In November, the company said uncertainty surrounding Britain’s departure from the EU was driving a slowdown in buyers of larger homes.

But in its latest update, Bovis said that building on its improved relationships with housing associations, it has increased private sales to housing associations.

For 2018, the group delivered 3,759 new homes, a 3% increase compared with the year earlier and the average selling price rose to £273,000 from £272,400 in 2017.

Chief executive Greg Fitzgerald said: “The significant improvement in operational performance across all areas of the business is expected to deliver a record year of profits for the group.

“Customer satisfaction is a key priority and the group’s return to four-star housebuilder status along with another controlled and disciplined period end reflect this.

“We are looking forward to delivering the first homes from our new housing range in 2019 and continuing to make further operational and financial progress.”

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