SAN JOSE—West Coast homebuilder and land developer UCP Inc. is expanding its reach to the Southeast with an agreement to acquire Citizens Homes Inc., headquartered in Charlotte, NC. The acquisition, expected to close in the second quarter, will give UCP entry into the Charlotte market as well as Raleigh, NC; Myrtle Beach, SC; and Nashville.

The deal for privately held Citizens is valued at about $15 million. When the deal closes, Citizens will operate under the Benchmark Communities name, UCP’s wholly owned homebuilding platform.

UCP’s president and CEO, Dustin Bogue, says Citizens’ “deep local presence” will significantly advance his company’s strategy of expanding its geographic footprint to housing markets that offer “strong underlying fundamentals, including favorable employment trends and rapidly expanding populations.”

For the year ended Dec. 31, 2013, Citizens delivered 170 homes, generating revenue of approximately $37.3 million. Its land portfolio consisted of approximately 589 owned and controlled lots as of Dec. 31; UCP believes there will be opportunities to increase Citizens’ transaction volume as well as “certain operational efficiencies.”

Founded in 2004, UCP operates in Northern California and the Puget Sound area of Washington State. In 2008, it was acquired by PICO Holdings; since then UCP has invested more than $219. million to acquire, control and develop than 6,000 single-family residential lots. Earlier this month, UCP opened the Preserve at Tumwater Place, a 120-aacre master-planned community of single-family homes in Tumwater, WA.