The UK’s third largest housebuilder today reported pre-tax profit of £457.4m for the six months to 30 June 2017

Strong consumer demand and mortgage availability boosted Persimmon’s turnover and profitability in the first six months of the year.

The UK’s third largest housebuilder today reported revenues of £1.66bn for the six months to 30 June 2017, up 12%, while pre-tax profit rose by nearly a third to £457.4m.

The group said its average selling price had risen by 4% to £213,262, and its underlying operating margin gained by nearly four percentage points to reach 27.6%.

Persimmon also reported forward sales of £2bn, up 15%. Nearly half (46%) of its 98,712 plots had received planning permission, while it maintained an additional 16,340 acres of strategic land.

Nicholas Wrigley, the group’s chairman said the housing market across its regions remained confident, while consumer sentiment was “resilient”.

Against a background of rising inflation, what he called “healthy employment levels and a competitive but disciplined mortgage market” were helping to boost prospects.

“Customers are finding good levels of support from mortgage lenders who have approved around 195,000 loans during the second quarter of 2017, a very similar level compared with the same period last year, despite the heightened uncertainties associated with the result of the recent UK general election,” he added.