Housing starts post flat result
PRELIMINARY ABS figures released yesterday indicate the recovery in residential construction activity failed to advance in the September quarter 2013, said the Housing Industry Association, the voice of Australia’s residential building industry.
‘‘In the aggregate, there was an increase in the value of construction work done during the September quarter of 2013. However, the result was less positive for the residential building sector. The value of residential building work done during the quarter was unchanged compared with the previous quarter,’’ said HIA Economist, Geordan Murray.
‘‘The flat result was a balancing act whereby a decline in work done in detached house building and home renovations was offset by a relatively strong increase in the value of work done on multi-unit dwellings,’’ added Geordan Murray.
‘‘It is good to see activity in the multi-unit segment of the market picking up, however the positive impact this should have on Australia’s housing supply is being offset by declining levels of activity in the detached home segment,’’ commented Geordan Murray.
‘‘ In order to see Aus- tralia’s growing population housed in a way that maintains the standard of living the community expects, we need to see broad based increases in the level of activity across the new home building sector rather than just a reallocation of activity between the various segments of residential building,’’ said Geordan Murray.
‘‘Demographic demand in the future will necessitate a structural increase in the rate of new home building across all types of dwellings when compared with the volumes we have seen over recent decades,’’ concluded Geordan Murray.
The value of work done on multi- unit construction increased by 3.9 per cent in the September quarter of 2013 to a level 16.8 per c e n t above the level recorded in the September quarter of 2012. In contrast, the value of work done on new detached homes declined by 1.6 per cent in the quarter to a level 3.6 per cent below the level in the September quarter a year ago.
The value of work on renovations declined by 3.1 per cent during the quarter to a level 3.3 per cent below the level recorded in the corresponding period last year.