This article examines the average commencement times (in quarters) for new houses, townhouses and flats, units or apartments from 2008-09 to 2018-19.
Commencement times are measured as the period (in quarters) between the granting of building approval and the commencement of construction (defined as when the first physical building activity has been performed on site). National data is presented to show changes in average commencement times of houses, townhouses and flats, units or apartments. Regional data is presented in five year periods to allow for broader comparisons between the states and territories.
Average times from commencement to completion of construction are presented in Average Dwelling Completion Times.
Data are presented for the following types of dwellings:
- 'Houses' - defined as detached buildings used for long term residential purposes, consisting of only one dwelling unit and are not a result of alterations or additions to a pre-existing building.
- 'Townhouses' - defined as semi-detached row or terrace houses attached in some structural way to one or more dwellings, with their own private grounds and no separate dwelling above or below.
- 'Flats, units or apartments' - defined as blocks of dwellings that don't have their own private grounds and usually share a common entrance, foyer or stairwell.
For further information refer to Functional Classification of Buildings (cat. no. 1268.0.55.001).
The data presented are from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) quarterly publication Building Activity, Australia (cat. no. 8752.0). Data presented in this article are available in the 'Building Activity: Average dwelling commencement times' data cube on the Data downloads section. The units (in quarters) have been rounded to weeks and days in this article.
Houses or townhouses that took more than three years to commence and apartments that took more than five years to commence were excluded. Houses constructed in groups of more than 10 and townhouses constructed in groups of more than 25 were also excluded. As a result, 1.2% of houses, 22.5% of townhouses and 0.2% of apartments were excluded from this analysis.
Projects that have been approved but have not commenced (including projects that were abandoned) are excluded from the analysis.