NSW – A tough place to develop

15 September 2009

Work started on slightly more new homes in NSW in the June quarter according to new figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics today.

The Urban Taskforces chief executive, Aaron Gadiel, said there had been a modest improvement in the NSW position, but that apartment and townhouse development had further deteriorated.


These figures illustrate the difficulties being faced by property developers across Australia and in NSW in particular, Mr Gadiel said.


Australia-wide, the number of construction starts on new homes fell by a seasonally adjusted 3.7 per cent. The fall was even greater in Queensland which saw a 10.4 per cent drop, Victoria saw a 3.7 per cent fall; while NSW saw a welcome increase of 2.1 per cent.


NSWs increase largely reflects a jump in the number of free-standing houses under construction. Work began on 3,300 privately financed new houses, which was only 15 per cent down on the equivalent figure for last year (last quarters figure was 20 per cent down).


However, construction starts on privately-financed apartments and townhouses (1,700) was 53 per cent lower than the equivalent figure for last year (last quarter was 47 per cent down on the last years figure).


Mr Gadiel said the latest figures made it clear that NSW was a difficult place to develop new residential housing. Its very tough getting new development projects approved in NSW any suggestion to the contrary is laughable, he said.


In the 12 months to June 2009, the private sector started work on 22,400 new homes in NSW (down 27 per cent on the previous year), while in Queensland it was 28,000 (down 36 per cent) and in Victoria it was 41,300 (up 2 per cent).


The latest figures show, that for every 10,000 NSW residents, work starts on 8 new private sector homes each quarter. While in Victoria work starts on 19 private sector homes, for every 10,000 of its residents and in Queensland work starts on 14 homes. Australia-wide work starts on 14 new private sector homes for every 10,000 Australian residents.


NSW is developing new homes at an appallingly low rate, Mr Gadiel said.


The Urban Taskforce is a property development industry group, representing Australias most prominent property developers and equity financiers.


The construction activity made possible by property developers contributes $69 billion to the national economy each year and creates 709,000 direct jobs. The construction industry is Australias third largest source of employment.

Please see attached PDF for illustrative graphs.



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