Vistry hikes profit expectations, as housing boom helps boost sales

By Joanna Bourke

Housebuilder Vistry has recorded higher sales

(Picture: Vistry)

Housebuilder Vistry has hiked its profits guidance after a “strong” performance that saw sales climb above pre-Covid levels.

The FTSE 250 company, formed via Bovis’ £1.1 billion deal to buy Galliford Try’s housing arms last year, completed 5351 home sales in the six months to June.

That was up from 3034 a year earlier when the industry faced initial disruption from lockdowns, with construction sites temporarily closing.

Total revenue jumped to £1.1 billion from £606.4 million. Adjusted revenue, which includes shares of joint venture projects, reached £1.3 billion, which is 4.3% ahead of the same half in 2019 before the coronavirus outbreak.

Builders have been boosted by a stamp duty holiday during the pandemic, and people seeking more space during lockdowns.

Vistry chief executive Greg Fitzgerald added that “overall the mortgage market is in a good place”.

The company expects full year adjusted pre-tax profits to come in at around £345 million, 5% ahead of what analysts had pencilled in.

Shares in Vistry rose 55.74p, or more than 4.5%, to 1279.24p.

The firm added that house price inflation is “more than offsetting cost increases with supply chain issues being well managed”.

It has seen price rises from goods such as roof tiles and concrete blocks this year.

The sector saw some supplier factories closed last year for lockdowns, causing disruption and backlogs of orders, but there has also been heightened demand for goods.

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