UK's Taylor Wimpey sees annual results in line with expectations


Jan 17 (Reuters) - Taylor Wimpey, the UK's third-largest housebuilder, on Monday joined bigger rival Persimmon in underscoring sustained demand in the housing market, adding that the company expects annual results in line with its forecasts.

Cheap loans and a pandemic-driven preference for larger homes have helped homebuilders forecast a brighter outlook and also driven up house prices to record levels, even beyond the expiry of a tax holiday in September, which spurred home sales.

"Despite wider economic uncertainty, forward indicators continue to show good underlying demand for our homes and pricing remains positive," the FTSE 100 firm said in a trading statement.

The High Wycombe-based firm, which also has a presence in Spain, said total UK home completions surged 47% to 14,087 units in 2021.

UK homebuilders were rocked last week when Britain ordered firms to pay around $5.4 billion to help remove dangerous cladding from buildings, sending the sector index to a weekly loss of about 9%.

Taylor Wimpey said it has identified all its buildings both above and below 18 metres that may require works related to cladding and is in active dialogue with building owners to undertake the process.

The company said it plans for capital returns through a share buyback and would announce the level of returns for 2021 at its annual results announcement on March 3.

Last week, Britain's No. 2 homebuilder Persimmon forecast higher profit margins for the 2021 fiscal year and smaller rivals MJ Gleeson and Vistry reported healthy trading figures on robust demand, while Countryside Properties unexpectedly flagged a weak quarter.

($1 = 0.7314 pounds)

(Reporting by Aby Jose Koilparambil in Bengaluru; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)