Total Dwellings Approved Fell Slightly In March, Says ABS


The total number of new dwellings approved for construction decreased by 0.1 per cent in March, in seasonally adjusted terms, following a 3.9 per cent rise in February, according to data released this week by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Daniel Rossi, ABS head of construction statistics, said “The result was driven by a 2.8 per cent fall in approvals for private sector houses, following an 11.3 per cent February rise. Private sector house approvals remain 15.0 per cent lower than March 2022,” Mr Rossi said.

Private sector dwellings excluding house approvals increased 5.6 per cent in March, following a 9.7 per cent decrease in February.

“This is the sixth consecutive month where the trend result has fallen for total dwellings approved,”  Mr Rossi said.

Across Australia total dwelling approvals decreased in Tasmania (-42.1 per cent), South Australia (-19.1 per cent), and Queensland (-6.7 per cent). Western Australia (+27.2 per cent), New South Wales (+3.1 per cent), and Victoria (+1.7 per cent) rose in March.

Approvals for private sector houses fell in most states: New South Wales (-4.0 per cent), Queensland (-3.9 per cent), Victoria (-3.8 per cent), and South Australia (-0.1 per cent). Western Australia was the only state with a March increase (+8.7 per cent).

The value of total building approvals fell 5.9 per cent, following a 19.5 per cent rise in February. The value of total residential building approvals fell 6.5 per cent, comprised of a 6.4 per cent decrease in new residential building and a 7.4 per cent fall in alterations and additions.

The value of non-residential building approved decreased 5.1 per cent, following a 41.0 per cent rise in February.

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