Record sales for major Scottish housebuilder as buyers seek larger homes with gardens

Springfield Properties, Scotland’s only listed housebuilder, has given a robust outlook after annual revenues leapt through £200 million for the first time.

The group, which operates out of offices in Elgin and Larbert, with developments in various locations across the country, said it was seeing “sustained demand” supported by low interest rates, a competitive mortgage market and a “prevailing shortage of homes across all tenures”.

Results for the year to the end of May revealed revenues of £216.7 million, up 51 per cent from a year earlier. Operating profit jumped 75.2 per cent to £19.8m while profit before tax was up 81.4 per cent to £18.5m.

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The board is recommending a final dividend of 4.45p per share, bringing the total dividend for the year to 5.75p, up from 2p.

Innes Smith is the chief executive of Springfield Properties, which is Scotland’s only listed housebuilder.

The firm, which had flagged turnover of more than £200m in July, pointed to strong build and sales activity throughout the year with high demand experienced across the business resulting in “significant growth” in revenue within its private and affordable housing divisions.

Total completions increased to 973 homes, from 727 the year before.

Chief executive Innes Smith said: “This has been an excellent year for Springfield. We have achieved our highest ever annual revenue and profit - exceeding £200m in revenue for the first time and by a significant amount - based on record results in both our private and affordable housing.

“We have substantially reduced our net debt position, demonstrating our ability to generate cash, and our strategic land sales towards the end of the year reflect our capacity to realise value from our large, high-quality land bank.

“Looking ahead, we entered the new financial year delivering against a significant order book, with excellent visibility over full year revenue. We are receiving sustained demand across the business supported by low interest rates, a competitive mortgage market and a prevailing shortage of homes across all tenures.”

The group said it had strengthened operations after implementing “efficiency and rationalisation measures” that reduced costs by some £1m on an annualised basis.

On the private housing front, revenue increased 46.2 per cent to £144.6m with 593 completions.

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Significant growth was driven by the completion of homes originally scheduled to be delivered at the end of the prior year but postponed due to lockdown, as well as strong demand for larger properties with gardens.

Bosses highlighted continued progress on the group’s “village” developments, with a key highlight being the advancing of community facilities, including the opening of convenience stores at Bertha Park, Perth and Dykes of Gray, Dundee.

The firm has commenced construction on the second phase of private homes at Bertha Park.

Within affordable housing, revenue increased by 29.7 per cent to £55.1m with 380 completions, up from 308.

Last year, the group was given the green light to construct its first homes for the private rental market. It was granted planning approval for 75 homes to be built at its Bertha Park development in Perth. The move followed a tie-up between the housebuilder and Edinburgh-based Sigma Capital Group.

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