The East Anglian property developer Bennett Homes has taken advantage of rising house prices. It acquired land cheaply in the late 1990s, built homes on it and then sold them as the market was peaking. Since then the company has rebuilt its land bank by buying “problem plots” with legal or administrative issues at 10%-20% below prevailing prices. Bennett’s profits rose 76% a year from £966,000 in 2000 to £5.3m in 2003, boosted by homebuyers who now spend about £10,000 on extras such as conservatories.
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