Brookfield Homes Corp. (NYSE:BHS) reported a net drop in orders of 50.2% during 2007's fourth quarter as the company wrote sales on 104 units compared to 209 during the same period last year.
The company said it expected to take write-downs and impairment charges of between $50 million and $60 million for the fourth quarter, equivalent to$1.05 to $1.24 per share, when it reports earnings next month.
For the year, orders were down 23.4% to 735, down from 960 last year, at a sales rate of 0.4 sales per week per community, based on an active community count of 33. The company closed on 839 homes and 1,328 lots, including joint ventures, for a total of 2,167 home and lot closings, up from 2,015 last year due primarily to the disposition of 79 owned and 1,249 optioned lots in Southern California. The company¹s backlog at December 31, 2007 was 155 homes, a decrease of 104 homes when compared to the same period last year.
Regionally, the company took orders on 39 homes in its Northern California region during the fourth quarter, up from 31 in the comparable period in 2006. Orders were also up for the year in that region, from 112 in 2006 to141 in 2007.
In the regions around Washington D.C., Los Angeles and San Diego, however, orders dropped sharply during the fourth quarter, with Washington down to 29 from 61; Los Angeles down to 24 from 53 and Sand Diego down from 70 to 16. For the year, L.A. orders dropped from 321 to 203 and San Diego fell from241 to 123. Washington was down marginally, from 268 to 259.
In a statement, the company said, "Housing market conditions remained challenging this past quarter as a result of continued high levels of inventories for resale and new homes for sale, low home buyer confidence and tightening lending standards resulting in deteriorating affordability."
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