AV Homes, Inc. (Nasdaq:AVHI) on Thursday after market close reported a net profit of $0.8 million, or $0.04 per share, for first quarter ended March 31. The gain missed analyst expectations by a penny but compares with a loss of $5 million, or $0.23 cents a share, in last year's quarter.
The gain came on revenue of $124.1 million, up 111% from the same period last year, driven primarily by the acquisition of Bonterra Builders in the Carolinas, which closed on July 1, 2015. During the quarter, AVHI closed 428 homes, a 101% increase from the 213 homes closed during the first quarter of 2015, with the average unit price up 13% to approximately $283,000 from approximately $250,000 in the same quarter last year.
New orders, net of cancellations, increased 41% to 682 from 485 last year, due primarily to an increase in selling communities to 60 from 36 as a result of both acquisition and organic growth. The average sales price increased 15% to approximately $308,000 from approximately $269,000 in the first quarter of 2015.
The aggregate dollar value of the contracts signed during the first quarter increased 61% to $209.9 million, compared to $130.5 million during the same period one year ago. Backlog value of homes under contract but not yet closed at March 31, 2016 increased 103% to $334.8 million on 1,053 units, compared to $164.7 million on 603 units at March 31, 2015.
Home building gross margin improved to 18.3% in the quarter from 16.4% in the first quarter of 2015. Home building SG&A expense as a percentage of home building revenue was 13.4% in the first quarter of 2016 compared with 18.2% in the first quarter of 2015. Corporate general and administrative expenses as a percentage of home building revenue improved to 3.3% in the first quarter of 2016 from 6.2% in the same period a year earlier.
"AV Homes has continued its positive momentum of producing profitable growth with a strong start to 2016," said Roger A. Cregg, president and CEO. "Home building revenue increased 127% in the quarter, driven by a doubling of the number of homes closed and increases in our average selling price. Our revenue growth and improving margins, combined with our strong first quarter sales and backlog reflect the favorable market positions and execution of our business plan."