Thursday, April 23, 2015

Lawler: More Builder Results

by Bill McBride on 4/23/2015 03:31:00 PM

From housing economist Tom Lawler:

PulteGroup reported that net home orders in the quarter ended March 31, 2015 totaled 5,139, up 5.7% from the comparable quarter of 2014. The average net order price last quarter was $332,400, up 0.5% from a year ago. Home deliveries last quarter totaled 3,365, down 2.1% from the comparable quarter of 2014, at an average sales price of $323,000, up 1.9% from a year ago. The company’s order backlog at the end of March was 7,624, up 5.9% from last March. Pulte’s net home building margin was 22.7%, compared to 23.8% a year ago.

Meritage Homes reported that net home orders in the quarter ended March 31, 2015 totaled 1,979, up 29.8% from the comparable quarter of 2014. The average net order price last quarter was $396,000, up 8.8% from a year ago. Home deliveries totaled 1,335, up 20.4% from the comparable quarter of 2014, at an average sales price of $387,000, up 5.7% from a year ago. The company’s order backlog at the end of March was 2,758k up 22.0% from last quarter. The company’s gross home building margin last quarter was 18.5%, down from 22.5% a year ago.

M/I Homes reported that net home orders in the quarter ended March 31, 2015 totaled 1,108, up 12.8% from the comparable quarter of 2014. Home deliveries last quarter totaled 717, down 2.0% from the comparable quarter of 2014, at an average sales price of $325,000, up 8.7% from a year ago. The company’s order backlog at the end of March was 1,613, up 5.8% from last March, at an average order price of $358,000, up 9.8% from a year ago. The company’s gross home building margin last quarter was 21.7%, unchanged from a year ago.

The general theme of builder reports so far compared to a year ago are (1) significantly stronger growth in net orders; (2) substantially lower increases in sales prices (with the exception of M/I Homes); and (3) lower gross margins (with the exception of M/I Homes).

Here are some summary stats.

  Net OrdersSettlementsAverage Closing Price
Qtr. Ended:3/153/14% Chg3/153/14% Chg3/153/14% Chg
D.R. Horton11,1358,56929.9%8,2436,19433.1%$281,305271,2303.7%
PulteGroup5,1394,8635.7%3,3653,436-2.1%$323,000317,0001.9%
NVR3,9263,32518.1%2,5342,21114.6%$371,000361,4002.7%
Meritage Homes1,9791,52529.8%1,3351,10920.4%$387,000366,0005.7%
M/I Homes1,10898212.8%717732-2.0%$325,000299,0008.7%
Total23,28719,26420.9%16,19413,68218.4%$314,652$306,4632.7%

Sales per active community for the above five builders combined last quarter were up 17.3% from the comparable quarter of 2014.

 By way of comparison, the YOY increase in net orders for these five builders combined for the quarter ended March 31, 2014 was 0.4%, net orders per community were down 6.2% YOY; and the average sales price was up 10.4% YOY.