ONE of the best-performing housebuilding firms during the recession has signalled a return to more normal property market conditions.

Newcastle-based Bellway, the only major housebuilder paying a dividend to shareholders, said more outlets and a bigger order book worth £421m left it on track for ten per cent volume growth in the 2010-11 financial year.

While concerns still exist in the wider economy, it said it achieved a slightly higher reservation rate, during the financial year, of 89 per week, with cancellation rates having returned to their normal level of 13 per cent. It completed the sale of 4,595 homes in the 12 months to July 31, an increase of five per cent on its previous financial year. Bellway is expected to report pre-tax profits of £42m in the year to July 31, up from £29.8m a year earlier.