LONDON Jan 15 British housebuilder Taylor
Wimpey said it expects its full-year operating margins to
hit the upper end of its expectations, helped by government
schemes that have stoked demand for its homes.
The company said on Wednesday in a trading update ahead of
its full-year results that its operating margins would be ahead
of its half-year margin of 13.1 percent, and over 200 basis
points higher than its 2012 margin of 11.2 percent.
In November, analysts forecasted Taylor Wimpey to post a
2013 margin of 13.5 percent.
Its update, which comes after similar robust results from
rivals Barratt Developments and Persimmon,
reflects the rapid rate at which Britain's housing market has
picked up over the past year following the launch of government
measures in April last year to help prospective homebuyers.
The return of buyer demand, combined with efforts by
housebuilders to pick up land cheaply during the recession and
build more lucrative family homes rather than city centre flats,
have helped such firms to sharply improve their margins.
"We enter 2014 with an excellent order book, with improved
margins and pricing and a very strong set of selling locations,"
the company said.
Taylor Wimpey said it completed 7 percent more homes over
the year to the end of December compared to the prior year, with
its net private reservation rate for the full year at 0.62 homes
per outlet per week, up from 0.58 in 2012.
The average selling price on its private homes rose by 7
percent to 210,000 pounds over the year, largely due to a shift
to better quality locations, and its orderbook at the end of the
year was valued at 1.2 billion pounds ($2 billion), 27 percent
higher than at the end of 2012.