The Housing Industry Association (HIA) has released figures that show residential building approvals increased for the second consecutive quarter in August 2014. These figures demonstrate a healthy start to the 2014/15 financial year.
The total number of residential building approvals increased by 3.0 per cent to 16,810 in August 2014. Detached housing approvals declined by 1.4 per cent, although it remains consistent with the level of activity throughout 2014 with around 9,400 approvals.
Victoria and Queensland both recorded increases in detached house approvals, while approval activity softened in the other states and territories. New South Wales recorded the most significant fall with approvals dropping by 10.7 per cent in the month.
The monthly flow of multi-unit dwelling approvals continued to be unstable. Multi-unit dwelling approvals recorded a monthly increase of 9.2 per cent to 7,409 in August. The uplift was due to healthy rebounds from relatively weak levels in July from New South Wales, Victoria and ACT.
HIA Economist Geordan Murray said the number of approvals in August remained below the peak achieved in January this year but despite this, August was a particularly strong month for residential building approvals.
“In the twelve months to August approvals reached 197,571 – a record high in any twelve month period. This result demonstrates that accommodative monetary policy settings are facilitating a sustained recovery in new home building,” Mr Murray said.
The increase in building approvals nationally during August was driven largely by the 15.5 per cent increase in Victoria - seasonally adjusted terms. Approvals also increased in New South Wales by 2.9 per cent, Queensland by 1.4 per cent, South Australia by 11.3 per cent. Western Australia recorded a decline in approvals of 16.2 per cent after a large month in July, while Tasmania was down by 0.6 per cent.
New home approvals increased by 9.0 per cent in the Northern Territory and by 13.0 per cent in the Australian Capital Territory during August.