Enthusiasm among homebuyers has started to drive sales in some of the most difficult sites in Barratt’s portfolio in recent weeks, said Mark Clare, chief executive of the housebuilder.

Improving consumer sentiment has pushed up sales rates 4% year-on-year and as high as 20% in London, flattered by recovery from the sharp fall in the market over Easter 2008.

But the effect has been damped by lenders’ caution on valuations and the constrained mortgage market.

The housebuilder says it has no plans for a rights issue, despite debts of £1.4bn.

Financial Times, Daily Telegraph