KB Home delivered 31 percent fewer homes and saw its loss widen significantly to $9.6 million (13 cents per share) for the quarter ending Aug. 31, compared to $1.4 million (2 cents) a year earlier.
The figures mirrored results posted by Lennar earlier in the week. Lennar was in the black, but its year-over-year profits slipped 31 percent on 3 percent lower deliveries.
Still, KB’s loss beat Wall Street expectations of 19 cents per share, and the company reported 40 percent higher new-home orders, an indicator of future improvement. (Lennar’s orders rose 11 percent.)
With operations in about a dozen states, L.A.-based KB Home’s current new-home communities in the Santa Clarita Valley include Milan at West Hills in Valencia and Echo Pointe and Echo Ridge at Plum Canyon in Saugus.
“We achieved encouraging operational and financial results in the third quarter despite the ongoing difficult housing environment,” CEO Jeffrey Mezger said in a statement. “We generated year-over-year growth in both net orders and backlog in all four of our operating regions.”
“Our strategic actions over the past several quarters of investing in attractive land positions, opening new communities, and reducing construction and overhead costs are yielding measurable results,” he said.
The company attributed its 27-percent drop in revenue (to $367.3 million from $501 million a year earlier) to its 31 percent decline in deliveries (1,603 homes compared to 2,320).
Deliveries were higher a year ago at least in part because the federal homebuyer tax credit was still in effect. It made home buying more affordable – and gave KB’s third-quarter 2010 deliveries and revenues a boost from orders placed prior to the tax credit’s April 2010 expiration.
For the third quarter of 2011, the declining deliveries were partially offset by a 6 percent year-over-year increase in average sales prices (to $227,400 from $214,200), the company said.