Housebuilding giant says 2021 performance was in line with expectations

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Taylor Wimpey announced a 47% increase in completions last year but has yet to return to pre-pandemic development levels.

In a trading update for the year to 31 December, the housebuilding giant, said it completed 14,087 new homes in 2021, up from 9,609 in 2020. This figure was however down on the 15,719 built in 2019.

The firm said it expects its full-year results, due in March, to show an operating profit of around £820m, in line with expectations.

Taylor Wimpey’s average selling price on private completions increased 3% to £332,000 year-on-year while its net private reservation rate increased from 0.76 to 0.91 homes per unit.

The firm’s “accelerated land buying” strategy saw it add 29,000 new plots to its short-term landbank over 18 months, along with 9,000 plots converted from its strategic land pipeline.

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This pipeline increased from 139,000 plots to 145,000, adding “sites cross all regions of our business and a healthy balance of large and small sites”.

The business ended the year with net cash of £837m, up from £719.4m, which the firm said was ahead of expectations. It said it would return an as yet unspecified amount of excess cash to shareholders.

Pete Redfern, Taylor Wimpey’s outgoing chief executive, said: “Looking ahead, we are well placed to deliver against our targets. The outlook is positive and Taylor Wimpey is particularly well positioned.

“We maintain a sharp focus on delivering sustainable growth, strong profitability and increased cash returns for shareholders over the long term.”

Last month Redfern announced that he was standing down after 14 years as chief executive. The firm has said it is considering internal and external candidates to replace him.