UK's Bellway forecasts strong home sales, order book balloons

·1-min read
A man works at a Bellway housing development in London

(Reuters) - Housebuilder Bellway Plc said on Tuesday it expected demand for new homes to remain robust for the rest of the fiscal year, as the sector benefits from government support measures and low lending rates.

The company, which builds houses ranging from one-bedroom apartments to six-bedroom family homes and luxury penthouses, estimated it would complete the sale of around 10,000 homes in the financial year ending July 31, compared with 7,522 units a year earlier.

"Demand for our high-quality new homes continues to be strong and customer confidence throughout the wider housing market is resilient," Chief Executive Officer Jason Honeyman said in a trading update.

The FTSE mid-cap firm's order book as on May 31 had risen by 20.5% to 1.89 billion pounds.

The British housing sector has boomed over the past year thanks to government incentives, including a tax break extension and a mortgage guarantee scheme, as well as rising customer preference for spacious properties in the era of social distancing.

That has lifted house rates in Britain, with prices recording their biggest annual increase since 2014 in May, according to figures from mortgage lender Halifax.

Bellway said it expected the annual average selling price of houses to rise more than its previous forecast, to over 300,000 pounds ($423,570.00).

($1 = 0.7083 pounds)

(Reporting by Aby Jose Koilparambil in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya Soni)

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