British competition regulator said on Friday it is looking into homebuilder Barratt's 2.52-billion-pound ($3.21 billion) all-stock deal to buy smaller rival Redrow.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), which has not yet launched a formal investigation, is seeking initial views on the impact that the deal could have on competition in the UK.

Barratt agreed to buy Redrow in early February to capitalise on a fledgling recovery in the housing market and cement its position as one of the largest homebuilders in Britain.

Britain's house building market had struggled with weak demand in 2023, hammering profits for homebuilders as demand took a hit from high borrowing costs. But there have been some signs of stability at the start of this year.

The sector had seen some consolidation in the past couple of years, including Vistry's 1.25-billion-pound purchase of Countryside in 2022.

The CMA's invitation to comment, which is a part of its information gathering process before it decides to launch an investigation, closes on April 2.

($1 = 0.7852 pounds)

(Reporting by Yadarisa Shabong in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D'Souza and Sherry Jacob-Phillips)