Countryside Properties is setting aside £41m to cover post-Grenfell cladding and fire safety retrofits on its former building projects.
The firm revealed its commitment to retrofit 69 buildings, as it unveiled improved results showing a return to profit as it began a strategic switch to focus entirely on its partnerships business going forward.
John Martin, chairman, said: “We have examined all buildings developed by Countryside over the last 15 years and identified 69 buildings across 17 sites where remedial works are required to bring them in line with current building regulations.
“Throughout the year, we have engaged with building owners, carried out invasive surveys and priced building owners’ scope of works.
“This has enabled us to more accurately estimate the potential costs associated with these buildings. As a result, we have established a provision of £41m to cover the cost of remedial works and losses suffered by building owners where it is identified that the works are necessary because we fell short of our high standards at the time of construction.”
Over the year to September 2021, Countryside bounced back into the black with a £73m operating profit after plunging £5.5m into the red after Covid disruption last year.
Revenue jumped by half to £1.5bn.
Following a strategic business review earlier this year, Countryside said in July it would focus all its resources on lower risk Partnerships, withdrawing from its a two-division market sale structure.
This saw Countryside establish a new Partnerships division to serve the Home Counties using people and resources from the legacy house building operations.
Martin added: “Countryside has a clear path to becoming 100% focused on our differentiated and market-leading mixed tenure Partnerships business.
“Since we announced the strategy earlier this year, we have made excellent progress in establishing the new division in the Home Counties where we have a wealth of opportunities to bring our award-winning proposition to a new generation of home-owners and tenants in an area where it is sorely needed.”
Countryside forecast that group operation margins will reach 13% once its new regions are established.
Construction of its new modular panel factory in Bardon, Leicestershire has completed and will begin production by the end of 2021.
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