Avant Homes secures record revenues on back of '˜buoyant' market

HOUSE builder Avant Homes secured record revenues over the last financial year on the back of a 'buoyant' housing market in the North of England.

Colin Lewis, chief executive of Avant Homes

The company also confirmed that it was looking for more land in Yorkshire as it seeks to increase its market share as cross-party support grows for measures to tackle housing shortages.

Avant said it was on track to deliver targets set in 2015 of becoming a £500m turnover, 2,000 unit business by the end of 2018, one year ahead of schedule. It has put in place a new, five-year strategy to double output to 4,000 homes per year by 2023.

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Revenues over the twelve-month period to April 27 were up 21 per cent to £447m, driven by rapid growth in completions and continued increase in private average selling price.

Over the period there were 1,903 total completions, which was an increase of 16 per cent compared with the prior year.

Colin Lewis, the chief executive of Avant Homes, said: “The last twelve months have been another landmark period for Avant and we are reaping the rewards of our strategy to build homes that offer something different to UK buyers.”

Mr Lewis said the early days of the traditional Spring selling season have been positive and the company continues to see strong demand for its homes.

He added: “This is driven in no small part by what continues to be a buoyant Northern housing market.

“We have 69 per cent of our H1 (first half) volumes now secured and are looking ahead to the new financial year with confidence.”

Mr Lewis said Avant’s Yorkshire market remained buoyant and it continued to see strong buyer interest across its sites in the region.

He added: “Just as importantly, we have seen ongoing activity in the land market in core areas such as Sheffield, Leeds and Bradford which will drive our long term growth in the region.

“Demand in Yorkshire has been strong. We have generated a rate of sale of 0.87 across the business since the start of the calendar year which is particularly encouraging and we’ve entered the key Spring selling season with excellent momentum.”

Mr Lewis said that Yorkshire remained the company’s heartland.

“Our homes have always resonated with customers in places such as Sheffield, Leeds and York. and we continue to look for land in these towns and cities in order to build on the strong historic links we have with these communities.”

Key sites acquired during the 2018 financial year included locations in Nottingham, Market Harborough, Sheffield and Glasgow.

In a statement, Avant said that the trading conditions in the regions where it operates remain robust.

The statement added: “Employment trends in these markets are encouraging, the ongoing availability of mortgage financing at competitive rates continues to underpin buyer activity and Avant’s well designed, high specification homes continue to resonate with the group’s customer base.

It continued: “More broadly, the group remains encouraged by the cross-party support for tackling the UK’s housing shortage which gives confidence in Avant’s long-term growth plans.”

With a continuation of supportive market conditions and ongoing momentum, the company’s board said it expected FY19 (the full year for 2019) to be another record year.