Housebuilder says that house reservations are down on the same period last year, but says market has improved since end of 2004.

Housebuilder Taylor Woodrow has confirmed that net reservations on its properties so far in 2005 are down on the first four months of last year.

Chief executive Iain Napier said in a trading statement that although the housing market had improved on the end of 2004, it still had not reached the buoyancy of a year ago. The company expects to report a decrease in completions in its first half results on the same period in 2004.

Napier said: “With the present uncertainty over interest rates, the distraction of the general election and a more cautious approach from buyers, it remains too early to predict the UK market for the full year.”

Napier added that the record order book for its North America division, which now accounts for 30% of the group’s operating profit, and its strong Spanish subsidiary, meant that there are alternative markets for growth.