Population growth central to outlook for home building

“Australia is experiencing a building boom with a record level of detached homes under construction but a return of a stable and reliable growth in population is necessary to ensure economic growth,” stated HIA Economist, Angela Lillicrap.

HIA released its economic and industry Outlook Report for Australia. The Outlook Report includes updated forecasts for new home building and renovations activity for Australia and each of the eight states and territories.

“The national economy is benefiting from a record volume of new detached homes under construction. This boom will continue well into 2022 and will support employment across the sector,” added Ms Lillicrap.

“This record volume of new detached homes under construction is occuring in all regions, and is continuing to expand.

“The elevated level of building and the speed that it emerged has resulted in demand for key building inputs outstripping supply, including materials, labour and land. The delay in the supply of materials will see the impact on labour and ancillary services remain elevated well into the second half of 2022. This is a positive for the wider economy as the economic stimulus is spread over more years, but a challenge for building businesses.

“Recent data suggests that demand for detached housing remains solid even without fiscal stimulus.

“There are also encouraging signs that demand for multi-units is returning ahead of population growth. Approvals for units have picked up in New South Wales and Queensland after a pause in 2020 as investors look through the haze of the pandemic and anticipate a return of migration.

“The renovations market is also mid-way through a record year. Unlike detached home building, we expect that this trend will continue for a number of years due to the elevated savings and increased time spent at home.

“Despite the strong outlook for the next twelve months, without a return of demand for new housing from overseas migration, there will be a decline in new home commencements over the next few years.

“Even with overseas migration re-starting next year, the volume of new home commencements will not be sustained. A decline in commencements of new homes should be anticipated from mid-2022 when homes initiated by HomeBuilder are reaching completion,” concluded Ms Lillicrap.

Source: HIA

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