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Taylor Wimpey Home Sales Increase as Lending Picks Up

Taylor Wimpey Plc, the U.K.’s second-largest homebuilder by market value, said sales climbed 7 percent last year as buyers took advantage of government programs to boost lending.

Sales rose to 11,696 homes and the average selling price gained 7 percent to 210,000 pounds ($345,000), the High Wycombe, England-based company said today in a statement. Sales volumes and prices will continue to rise in 2014 and the operating margin is expected to widen by 2 percent to 3 percent, the homebuilder said.

Housing stimulus programs introduced by Prime Minister David Cameron’s coalition government have made it easier for buyers to borrow as the U.K.’s economic recovery boosts confidence. The Help-to-Buy plan helped house prices gain the most since 2006 last year, Nationwide Building Society said on Jan. 3.

“The Southeast showed signs of recovery earliest, but by the summer, we’d seen improvements in the Midlands, most of the North and the beginnings of improvements in Scotland,” Taylor Wimpey Chief Executive Officer Pete Redfern said by phone. “It’s no longer a recovery led by affluent second-home buyers with high equity, or by government support of first-time buyers; most of our customer target groups are showing growth.”

More than 2,900 customers used Help-to-Buy to purchase homes from Taylor Wimpey last year, the company said today.

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