New home sales decline slightly in March in Australia, says HIA survey
The HIA New Homes Sales Report – a survey of Australia’s largest home builders – shows a modest decline in total new home sales during March 2017.
“New home sales across the country eased by around 1.1 per cent in March 2017,” said HIA Economist, Geordan Murray. “The decline was more evident in detached house sales which were down by 1.4 per cent in March. Sales of ‘multi-units’ eased by only 0.1 per cent in the month.
“With residential building activity having peaked at a record level in 2016, industry spectators are watching leading indicators closely to assess where activity may be headed in the next phase of the cycle.
“In particular, there has been a high degree of speculation about the trajectory of activity in the multi-unit market given the unprecedentedly large role it has played throughout the upside of the cycle. The new home sales survey shows that sales have been sustained at a relatively high level though to March this year.
“Similarly, detached house sales are indicating only a slight downward trend. This is consistent with other data on building approvals and dwelling commencements,” concluded Geordan Murray.
Amongst the jurisdictions surveyed, NSW was the only state to record an increase in detached house sales in March, posting a 10.4 per cent rebound after a soft result in February. Detached house sales fell by 4.6 per cent in Victoria, by 5.4 per cent in Queensland and fell in South Australia and Western Australia fell by 1.7 per cent and 1.2 per cent respectively.