Newport Beach-based William Lyon Homes Inc. Wednesday reported lower fourth-quarter home orders in California and companywide.
The number of new home orders in California dropped to 290 in the fourth quarter, compared to 330 a year earlier.
Including the company’s other two markets, Arizona and Nevada, William Lyon’s total orders for the fourth quarter fell 7%, to 460 homes.
The decrease in California orders came despite an increase in the number of sales locations in the state, which rose to 30 in the fourth quarter from 24 a year ago.
Companywide, new home orders per average sales location decreased to 10.5 for the quarter, versus 13.3 a year earlier.
For all 2005, William Lyon saw home orders fall slightly to 3,321, from 3,371 in 2004. In California, new-home orders remained flat, at 2,132 in 2005 compared to 2,112 in 2004.
On a positive note, the homebuilder closed sales on 1,069 homes in California in the fourth quarter, up from 850 a year ago. Companywide, William Lyon closed 1,468 homes last quarter, up from 1,210 a year ago.
The increase in homes closed is a big turnaround from just three months ago, when William Lyon closed sales on 650 homes, down 25% from a year earlier.
The company has a backlog of 731 homes in California that have been sold, but not closed, which is up from 602 homes a year ago.