Beazer Homes posts positive Q1 results
Atlanta-based Beazer Homes has reported first-quarter net income of $739,000, compared with a net loss of $48.8 million in the prior-year quarter.
In the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2011, revenue totaled $188.5 million, up 73% from $109.0 million in the same period a year ago.
“I am pleased with our results for the quarter,” said Allan Merrill, president and CEO of Beazer Homes. “In spite of still challenging market conditions, our team managed to generate a 36% improvement in year-over-year new home orders while reducing overhead costs in dollar and percentage terms. While we have a lot of work in front of us to return to sustainable profitability, we are committed to delivering higher orders and closings as well as positive EBITDA for the full fiscal year.”
Total new orders for the quarter were 724 homes, a 36% increase from fiscal 2011.
Total backlog from continuing operations totaled 1,307 homes with a sales value of $315.8 million, compared with 787 homes with a sales value of $198.0 million as of Dec. 31, 2010.
Pennsylvania bill would protect homeowners against mechanic’s liens
A bill introduced into the Pennsylvania House of Representatives would protect that state’s homeowners from mechanics’ liens filed by subcontractors if the homeowners paid the contractor in full.
The bill would eliminate the ability of subcontractors, suppliers and others to file liens on owner-occupied residences when the monetary obligations have been paid in full.
This happened not long ago to a group of 17 property owners facing mechanics’ liens in Westmoreland, Pa., because the roofing company they hired allegedly failed to pay the material supplier, according to an article in the Greensboro Tribune-Review. One of the properties is an apartment building.
The liens were filed last month by ABC Supply Co, the Beloit, Wis., firm with an outlet in New Castle. ABC Supply claimed in court papers that Prime Roofing Systems of Waxahachie, Texas, failed to pay them for more than $64,000 in building materials delivered to the 17 properties. Property owners have said they paid Prime Roofing for the work, which was done to repair damage from a tornado and hail storm that ripped through the county last March.
Rebecca Ruble of Hempfield said she had a $3,700 lien placed on her home by ABC Supply as a result of the Prime Roofing Systems non-payment. She said the proposed legislation — which was introduced in May and is slowly winding its way through the Pennsylvania legislature — is too late to help her.
Under the bill, a property owner would file a notice when work starts, which would require all subcontractors and suppliers to provide owners with notice of the work they are performing or the materials they are providing. These notices might be filed through a website. Ohio has a similar law.
The Pennsylvania House is scheduled to vote on the bill in the next month and then move it on for consideration in the Senate.
Builder confidence rises for mature housing market
Builder confidence in the 55+ housing market for single-family homes rose four points to 18 compared with the same period a year ago, according to a poll released by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).
"We are seeing increased optimism from builders in the 55+ housing segment," said NAHB chairman Bob Nielsen, a home builder from Reno, Nev. "However, the market still remains weak as many people in the mature-market sector are hesitant to buy. They are concerned about selling their existing home at a fair price, due to low appraisals, an abundance of foreclosures and tighter mortgage lending criteria."
The 55+ Housing Market Index (HMI) measures builder sentiment based on current sales, prospective buyer traffic and anticipated six-month sales for that market. A number greater than 50 indicates that more builders view conditions as good than poor. All index components increased from a year ago: Present sales rose four points to 17, expected sales for the next six months increased two points to 26, and traffic of prospective buyers rose five points to 15.
The 55+ multifamily condo HMI also showed improvement, with an index level up six points to 14. Present sales increased five points to 12, expected sales for the next six months rose three points to 17, and traffic of prospective buyers increased five points to 15.