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Building activity on the up

by Staff Reporter7 minute read
The Adviser

Dwelling commencements increased in 2012/2013 following two consecutive years in decline, according to housing data released by the Australia Bureau of Statistics.

Housing Industry Association chief economist Dr Harley Dale said the 11.2 per cent increase in 2012/2013 was an encouraging result after declines of 5.8 per cent and 11.1 per cent in 2010/2011 and 2011/2012 respectively.

“A substantial upward revision to the March 2013 quarter contributed to housing starts surpassing the 160,000 mark in 2012/2013, reaching a level of 161,043. That is a healthy figure by recent standards and certainly a promising first round recovery for new home building,” said Dr Dale.

According to Dr Dale, an acceleration of growth in 2013/2014 is now important for the housing sector.

“We now need to see an acceleration of growth in 2013/2014 reflective of a broad-based recovery in housing starts. That outcome will require further upwards momentum in New South Wales and Western Australia, together with a re-emergence of sustained growth in other markets,” said Dr Dale.

A sustained improvement in confidence, together with low interest rates will assist a recovery, but Dr Dale said other influences may be working to slow down the desired growth.

“The current regulatory and taxation environment combined with ever-tightening credit conditions for residential development significantly dilutes the chances of securing this outcome,” said Mr Dale.

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