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In the ever-expanding landscape of the construction industry, there’s exciting news on…
22 December 2023
The latest data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics paints a promising picture for the home building sector, indicating a stabilisation in new housing construction across the nation. In October, the number of dwellings approved for construction saw a notable increase of 7.5 percent, reaching a total of 14,223 units. Notably, this surge was predominantly propelled by a 19.5 percent rise in the multi-unit residential sector, demonstrating the sector’s inherent volatility and the need for cautious interpretation of single-month data.
However, amidst this volatility, the detached house sector exhibited a steady increase of 2.2 percent, providing encouraging signs of stability within the market. This positive trajectory arrives as the Reserve Bank of Australia maintained steady interest rates during its December board meeting. Governor Michelle Bullock emphasized the moderation of inflation and highlighted the pivotal role of data in determining future monetary policy decisions.
Despite these positive indicators, there are concerns regarding the National Housing Target of delivering 1.2 million new homes by 2024/25. ACIF forecasts suggest a potential shortfall in meeting this ambitious target, projecting annual housing completions to fall below the required threshold. The anticipated completions stand at 169,000 in 2024/25, gradually rising to 184,000 by 2027/28, raising doubts about achieving the desired goal.
Lending data further supplements the narrative of a stabilising market, with a 1.8 percent increase observed in the number of new loans approved for owner-occupied construction or newly constructed home purchases, totalling 4,385.
This positive trend signals a turnaround from the downturn experienced in the latter half of 2022, attributed to the Reserve Bank of Australia’s aggressive monetary policy tightening cycle. While the stabilisation is a welcome relief, the Housing Industry Association anticipates a continued contraction in dwelling construction starts until reaching a probable bottom in the September quarter of 2024.
These developments underscore the complex landscape of the construction industry, where positive growth indicators coexist with challenges in meeting ambitious national targets. As the sector navigates these dynamics, stakeholders are advised to approach the data with caution, acknowledging the sector’s inherent volatility while embracing the optimistic signs of stability.
The path ahead for the home building sector in Australia remains intricate, relying on a delicate balance of market forces, regulatory measures, and sustained industry resilience. Keeping a close eye on evolving trends and policy landscapes will be crucial in steering the industry toward sustainable growth and achieving the overarching national housing goals.