Data Snapshot: Building Approvals - Approvals Jump as NSW Surges

The key points in this report are:


  • The recent rollercoaster ride in residential construction continued in November, as a surge in high-rise approvals led to an 11.8% jump in dwelling approvals.
  • Approvals have been volatile on a month-to-month basis recently. November’s gain comes off the back of a 7.9% fall in October. Residential approvals have been oscillating around a downward trend since peaking in late 2017.
  • High-rise construction continues to drive the volatility. By sector, approvals for “other” dwellings (which includes apartments and other multi-unit dwellings) surged 20.8% after falling 11.1% in the previous month. Private sector houses saw a 6.1% gain over the month, erasing the 5.8% drop registered in October.
  • NSW recorded its first positive annual growth outcome since May 2018 (7.1%), led by a large monthly increase in high-rise approvals. Victoria’s annual decline narrowed to -6.4% from -19.7% previously. The annual rate of growth was also positive in South Australia (37.9%). Approvals declined in the other States, including Tasmania (-23.3%), Western Australia (-7.4%) and Queensland (-12.3%).
  • The latest increase in residential approvals is encouraging, however, building approvals are volatile on a month-to-month basis. Record low interest rates and the recent recovery in housing prices have been supporting building activity. Meanwhile, low housing sales turnover and concerns over building quality have been dampening activity.


Please see the attached report for more information.



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