Horror slump for Queensland home starts as units and houses dive

first_imgNew home construction at Mango Hill, north of Brisbane. Picture: AAP Image/Dan PeledQUEENSLAND has copped a horror quarter for new home starts with major declines across both new houses and new units.The Sunshine State saw a sharp 31 per cent decline in total dwelling commencements in the March quarter this year compared to the same period in 2016 seasonally adjusted.Latest Australian Bureau of Statistics building activity data found that March quarter dwelling commencements were also down 10 per cent compared to the preceding three months to December.The value of work that began construction was almost a quarter less than the same period last year (-24.6 per cent) at $2.58 billion, and was also 10.6 per cent down on the December quarter.The value of new houses that started was $1.26 billion which was a 26.9 per cent fall on December quarter and 13.3 per cent down on the same period the previous year.More from newsMould, age, not enough to stop 17 bidders fighting for this home3 hours agoBuyers ‘crazy’ not to take govt freebies, says 28-yr-old investor3 hours agoLocal and national home builders inspecting the site of Harmony Display World, which is currently under construction at Palmview, Sunshine Coast.Other residential starts, which includes units, were valued at $1.31b, down by a third on the same period in 2016, and a 13.8 per cent drop on December quarter.WargentAdvisory chief executive Pete Wargent said unit commencements slumped 29 per cent nationally, mostly because of a Queensland slowdown.“The main driver of the drop has been Queensland, particularly Brisbane apartment starts which have dropped off a cliff since March 2016.”Housing Industry Association principal economist Tim Reardon said the last time building activity was at such declines was in mid-2014.“At the core of this drop in activity is primarily the slowdown in construction of new apartments and units, particularly on the east coast,” he said. “A record number of apartments are due to come onto the market this year and the next phase of investment is now not likely to occur until the apartments currently under construction clear the market.”But Mr Reardon said the slowdown was “not cause for alarm”.“We are coming down off the back of records levels of activity in recent years, particularly in apartments. The housing industry is well placed to balance cyclical changes in demand and HIA’s forecasts expect that we will return to a growth market before the end of the decade.”last_img

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