Avatar Holdings Inc., Coral Gables (NASDAQ-AVTR) on Tuesday reported a net loss of $10.1 million ($0.81) per diluted share for its first quarter ended March 31, closing out an earnings season that, for home builders, was mostly forgettable. The loss compared with a $10.1 million shortfall ($0.90) per diluted share in last year's first quarter.

No analysts follow the company; there were no earnings estimates. Shares of Avatar were trading down 4.35% at $14.50 Tuesday afternoon.

Revenue was up to $12.2 million from $9.6 million for the quarter as closings rose 18% to 33 homes and dollar volume increased by 39% to $7,596,000 compared to $5,451,000 for the first quarter of 2010. The increases were more than offset by increased costs related to acquisitions, marketing and sales and the launch of a new lifestyle program at two active adult communities, Solivita in Central Florida and CantaMia in Arizona.

New orders were down 15% to 51, with dollar volume roughly flat with last year's quarter at $12.1 million. Backlog was up 7% to 61 units from 57 units in the first quarter of 2010.

Backlog dollar value, the cancellation rate, margins and SG&A were not reported in either the earnings release or a 10-Q report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

"Although we are not pleased with our first-quarter results, we had many accomplishments during the quarter, including the introduction of the Younger Next Year brand at Solivita and CantaMia, the grand opening of the Village Center at CantaMia, and the completion of the sale of $100 million in convertible notes," said Jon M. Donnell, president and CEO."Additionally, as part of our strategy to monetize non-core assets, in April2011 we closed the $7.9 million sale of Turtle Creek in Central Florida at a profit which will be recognized in the second quarter."

The company ended the quarter with $184.6 million in cash, up from $115.5 million at the close of the prior quarter, and listed $159.4 million in total debt on the balance sheet, up from $77.1 million at Dec. 31.

Subsequent to the close of the quarter, on April 1, holders of $41.6 million of 4.50% convertible senior notes exercised rights for company to repurchase the notes.