Bovis hails strong start to the year

BOVIS Homes offered more signs of a spring bounce in the property market today following a 41 per cent jump in sales reservations so far this year.

The Kent-based builder, which trades from 85 active sites, added that sales prices have been modestly ahead of its hopes.

It announced a 74 per cent jump in profits to £32.1m for 2011 and said the signs were positive for the current year after receiving 26 per cent more sales enquiries than a year ago in the eight weeks to February 24.

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Redrow, Barratt Developments and Galliford Try have also reported improved results in the last week as company margins benefit from the buying of land at lower prices during the downturn and improved sentiment.

While first-time buyers will be required to start paying stamp duty again next month, builders hope that the Government’s mortgage indemnity scheme, which guarantees to underwrite losses on new build properties in England to help new buyers borrow up to 95 per cent of the value of their home, will stimulate demand.

Bovis said around 75 per cent of its active sales sites at the end of 2012 will be southern located, compared with 60 per cent at the start of 2012.

The company added: “It is anticipated that sales prices will continue to be more robust in the south of England than in the north, which will assist the group given the southern bias of its sites.”