INVESTMENTS IN UNCONSOLIDATED ENTITIES
|9 Months Ended|
Sep. 30, 2020
|Equity Method Investments and Joint Ventures [Abstract]|
|INVESTMENTS IN UNCONSOLIDATED ENTITIES||INVESTMENTS IN UNCONSOLIDATED ENTITIES We may enter into land development joint ventures as a means of accessing larger parcels of land, expanding our market opportunities, managing our risk profile and leveraging our capital base. While purchasing land through a joint venture can be beneficial, currently we do not view joint ventures as a primary source of land acquisitions. Our joint venture partners are generally other homebuilders, land sellers or other real estate investors. We generally do not have a controlling interest in these ventures, which means our joint venture partners could cause the venture to take actions we disagree with or fail to take actions we believe should be undertaken, including the sale of the underlying property to repay debt or recoup all or part of the partners' investments. Based on the structure of each joint venture, it may or may not be consolidated into our results. As of September 30, 2020, we had one active equity-method land venture with limited operations.
As of September 30, 2020, we also participated in one mortgage joint venture, which is engaged in mortgage activities and provides services to our homebuyers. Our investment in this mortgage joint venture as of September 30, 2020 and December 31, 2019 was $0.6 million and $0.7 million, respectively.
Summarized condensed combined financial information related to unconsolidated joint ventures that are accounted for using the equity method was as follows (in thousands):
(1)Balance represents Meritage’s interest, as reflected in the financial records of the respective joint ventures. This balance may differ from the balance reported in our unaudited consolidated financial statements due to the following reconciling items: (i) timing differences for revenue and distributions recognition, (ii) step-up basis and corresponding amortization, (iii) capitalization of interest on qualified assets, (iv) income deferrals as discussed in Note (2) below and (v) the cessation of allocation of losses from joint ventures in which we have previously written down our investment balance to zero and where we have no commitment to fund additional losses.
(2)Our share of pre-tax earnings is recorded in Earnings from financial services unconsolidated entities and other, net and Other income, net on our unaudited consolidated income statements and excludes joint venture profit related to lots we purchased from the joint ventures, if any. Such profit is deferred until homes are delivered by us and title passes to a homebuyer.
The entire disclosure for equity method investments and joint ventures. Equity method investments are investments that give the investor the ability to exercise significant influence over the operating and financial policies of an investee. Joint ventures are entities owned and operated by a small group of businesses as a separate and specific business or project for the mutual benefit of the members of the group.
Reference 1: http://www.xbrl.org/2003/role/disclosureRef