Housebuilder benefits from increased spending in social housing, as profits hit £4.6m.

Housebuilder Mears has recorded a 42% jump in profits for the first half of the year as it benefited from a growth in social housing spending.

The company reported pre-tax profits of £4.6m for the period, compared with £3.2m last year. Turnover rose 1% to £96.2m across the same period.

Chairman Bob Holt said that the increase was largely due to the government’s increased commitment to social housing spending. He said: “Social housing is a fragmented sector with relatively few large service providers. More and more local government clients are exploring the benefits of working with private sector providers and in developing long-term partnerships with a smaller number of large service providers.”

Holt added that he expected Mears’ results to be boosted further in future by continued growth in the sector. He said he expected a market opportunity in recurring repairs and maintenance of around £5bn a year, and said the company believed the government would extend its Decent Homes Standard beyond the planned 2010 date.

Holt said: “The available spend from Central Government is also very healthy, with at least £3.5bn to be committed annually to the Decent Homes Standard, we believe the Decent Homes commitment is likely to last until 2015.