August sustains high number of dwelling approvals

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Despite falling by 1.8% over the month of August, residential dwelling approval figures remain strong, registering a 10.1% increase from last year’s figures.

According to the latest data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, there were 20,788 dwellings approved for construction in August 2016 – just a tad bit lower than the previous month’s figures.

“Despite the slight fall in approvals over the month, they still remain at very high levels on an historic basis indicating that there remains a level of confidence from property developers that they can continue to bring new stock to the market and attract a sufficient level of demand to make a profit,” said CoreLogic head of research Cameron Kusher.

Of these approvals, 11,313 were for units and 9,475 were for houses – continuing the trend of higher unit approvals over the past year that emphasizes the growing shift towards densification. There is also a prevalence of high-rise unit development, with 232,232 high-rise units approved over the four years to August 2016 – double the number of townhouse approvals.

“We anticipate that approvals will slow over the coming year. However, they are likely to remain high on an historic basis,” said Kusher.

“With tighter lending policies, particularly for investors, it is reasonable to expect that once the slowdown occurs, it is likely to impact on the unit market more so than the detached housing market which tends to be dominated by owner-occupiers more than investors.

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