Homebuilder D.R. Horton (DHI) revealed Tuesday that net income for its first fiscal quarter of 2013 increased 139% to $66.3 million, or $0.20 per diluted share.
"This quarter was our most profitable first quarter since 2007, with $107.9 million of pre-tax income, a 270% increase from the year-ago quarter," said Donald Horton, chairman of the board. "We experienced substantial increases in the number of homes sold, closed and in backlog compared to the year-ago quarter."
Net sales orders for the quarter jumped 39% to 5,259 homes from 3,794 one year ago, and the value of net sales orders skyrocketed 60% to $1.3 billion from $800 million the year before.
The value of the backlog rose 80% to $1.8 billion from $1 billion a year ago.
"We experienced broad improvement in demand in most of our markets this quarter, and we significantly increased our investments in homes under construction, finished lots, land and land development to capture this increasing demand," said Horton.
The increase in core production numbers for D.R. Horton is reflective of the home building industry in 2012. David Crowe, chief economist for the National Association of Home Builders, told HousingWire that the year 2012 ended with a total of 780,000 housing starts, up 28% from 2011.
The industry is still a long way off from a normal production level, Crowe added, but it is moving in a positive direction.
"I think we’ll run at about the same pace in 2013," said Crowe. "What we don’t seem to be doing is accelerating any faster. Many things still remain unresolved."
Appraisals are still coming in low, deals are still getting canceled, credit standards are still tight and supply costs are rising, causing builders to raise their prices.
Regardless, with more people moving out of their parents' house or out of a roommate situation, there will continue to be increased homebuilding demand for the foreseeable future.