New residential construction has increased by 40 percent compared to the previous year.

The announcement:

“The number of new houses that started construction in the March quarter of 2021 was more than 40 percent higher than at the same time last year,” said HIA economist Angela Lillicrap.

The ABS published data on construction activity for the March quarter of 2021. The single-family home new construction starts rose by 40.6 percent compared to the March 2020 quarter, while the starts of other housing types (mainly apartments) fell by 22.8 percent.

“This record housing construction volume is not unexpected and supports employment across the economy,” added Ms. Lillicrap.

“Compared to early 2020, when work on the construction pipeline slowed, developers are now facing other challenges, including labor and material shortages.

“These restrictions are expected to ease by 2022 as the number of new homes starting construction subsides.

“There is a strong divergence between the single-family house and the multi-family house market. The number of new units established in the March quarter fell to their lowest level since June 2012.

“Housing starts with multiple units have declined by almost 50 percent since their last high in March 2018, and are 53.4 percent below their record high in March 2016.

“The multi-unit market is likely to remain constrained until there is more certainty about the return of overseas migration.

“Given these contrasting market conditions between single and multi-family houses, the total number of new apartments built in March 2021 was only 13.1 percent above the previous year”, Lillicrap concluded.

Western Australia recorded the largest increase in single-family homes at 136.0 percent compared to the same quarter of the previous year.

This was followed by South Australia (+61.7 percent), Northern Territory (+59.6 percent), Tasmania (+50.7 percent), ACT (+50.0 percent), New South Wales (+37.5 percent) , Queensland (+28.8 percent) and Victoria (+14.6 percent).

Source: Association of the Housing Industry (HIA)