Housebuilder says housing market is stabilising but sees no major increase in demand

Housebuilder Bellway is to start 'selectively' ramping up house production and buying new sites, amid signs of a stabilising housing market in the south east.

In an interim management statement the firm said it had reduced the number of built unsold homes from 1,000 to 660 in the last three months, and was achieving 105 reservations per week. Consequently, it said, it was likely to have half of next year’s sales reserved by the end of its current financial year in August.

The statement said: “The focus of the business is changing from primarily one of simple debt reduction to selectively increasing production in certain parts of the country where demand is strongest. In addition, the group has instructed its land teams to begin acquiring land suitable for traditional two storey housing.”

However, the firm said there had been no “major” increase demand for its homes since interim results were announced on the 31 of March, with first-time buyers still struggling to raise the large deposits required by lenders.

Sales in the south have been “marginally stronger”, with turnover in these divisions now expected to be much higher by the end of the year than those from divisions in the Midlands, Yorkshire and North West England.