* Revenue down 8 pct as builder cuts sales target
SAO PAULO Nov 12 (Reuters) - Cyrela Brazil Realty SA , the country's No. 2 homebuilder, posted higher third-quarter profit from a year ago as revenue declined with fewer housing starts and cooler demand.
The company reported quarterly net income of 150 million reais ($73 million) in a Monday securities filing, up 3 percent from a year earlier but less than an average estimate of 173 million reais in a Reuters survey.
Cyrela is one of Brazil's few major homebuilders posting stable profits after years of poorly managed growth and runaway building costs that forced developers to scale back operations and focus on executing old projects.
Cyrela cut its 2012 sales outlook last month for the second time due to delays in the approval of new projects mainly in the city of Sao Paulo.
With fewer newly started developments to sell, the company booked 8 percent less revenue than a year earlier.
But more finished projects allowed Cyrela to generate cash from operations, reducing its net debt by 147 million reais in the quarter.
Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, a gauge of operating profit known as EBITDA, rose 3 percent from a year ago to 231 million reais, missing a forecast of 312 million reais.