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Berkeley set to smash 2007 housing delivery peak by 30%

Housebuilder Berkeley Group has said it is working to deliver more housing as Help to Buy fuels demand, but warned of the importance of “maintaining a stable and predictable regulatory and taxation environment” to enable its continued investment.

It said today expects to complete 30 per cent more homes this year than at the peak of the housing market in 2007.

In an interim management statement covering the period between 1 November 2013 and 28 February 2014, it said cash from forward sales was now in excess of £1.9bn (up from £1.75 billion at 31 October 2013).

Berkeley has now paid £1.64 per share of dividends, equivalent to £215 million, towards its first milestone of £568 million by September 2015.

It said it now employs more than 10,000 people on its sites and built in excess of 10 per cent of all new affordable homes in London over the last six years.

Berkeley said it expects full-year results to be at the top end of analyst expectations. Chris Millington, analyst at Numis, said it expected FY pre-tax profits of around £374m, but Bloomberg expects up to £379m.

The group has increased its land holdings with the acquisition of five further sites since the half year. Of these, two will be immediately added to its land holdings and three included in its future pipeline as they require planning permission.

Around 86 per cent of the group’s land holdings have planning permission and all of these sites are in the course of construction.

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