Building Activity, Australia

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Provides estimates of value of building work and number of dwellings commenced, completed, under construction and in the pipeline

Reference period
March 2022

Key statistics

In seasonally adjusted terms in the March quarter:

  • Total dwelling unit commencements fell -6.5% to 49,017 dwellings.
  • New private sector house commencements fell -11.6% to 29,672 dwellings.
  • New private sector other residential commencements fell -1.1% to 17,538 dwellings.
  • The value of total building work done fell -0.5% to $30.4b.

Number of dwellings commenced


 Mar qtr 22
Dec qtr 21 to Mar qtr 22
% change
Mar qtr 21 to Mar qtr 22
% change

Seasonally adjusted

Total dwelling units commenced49,017-6.5-6.7
New private sector houses29,672-11.6-16.9
New private sector other residential building17,538-1.112.9



The total number of dwelling units commenced in Australia fell 6.5% to 49,017 dwellings in the March quarter, in seasonally adjusted terms. The fall was driven by private sector houses, which fell 11.6% to 29,672 dwellings and follows a fall of 6.2% in the December quarter. Private sector other residential dwelling commencements fell 1.1% to 17,538 dwellings, following a fall of 16.2% in the December quarter.

The total number of dwellings under construction reached a record high of 240,065 in March, an additional 2.9% increase from the record high in December of 233,274 dwellings. This increase was driven by private sector new houses, which have increased to record highs since March 2021, with 101,240 new private houses under construction in March 2022.

Value of work done

Reference year for Chain Volume Measures is 2019-2020

 Mar qtr 22
Dec qtr 21 to Mar qtr 22
% change
Mar qtr 21 to Mar qtr 22
% change

Seasonally adjusted chain volume measures

Total value of work done30,422.2-0.50.1
New residential building15,700.60.3-1.0
Alterations and additions to residential building2,755.0-0.1-2.3
Non-residential building11,966.5-1.62.2


The value of total building work done fell 0.5% to $30.4b in the March quarter, in seasonally adjusted terms.
The fall was driven by non-residential building work done, which fell 1.6% to $12.0b. New residential building work done rose 0.3% to $15.7b driven by new other residential building, which rose 5.0% to $5.8b. Work done on new houses fell 2.3% to $9.9b.

Data downloads

Time series spreadsheets

Data files

File contents

The Building Activity: Australia data cube contains original current price data at finer levels of building type than is available in the time series spreadsheets.

The Building Activity: Australia pivot table contains the following data items
Data itemClassification
State/TerritoryAll States and Territories
Reference quarterQuarterly (September 2001 to current)
Sector of ownershipPrivate, Public, Total
Type of buildingHouses
 Semi-detached, row or terrace houses, townhouses - One storey
 Semi-detached, row or terrace houses, townhouses - Two or more storeys
 Semi-detached, row or terrace houses, townhouses - Total
 Apartments - In a one or two storey block
 Apartments - In a three storey block
 Apartments - In a four to eight storey block
 Apartments - Nine or more storeys
 Apartments - Total including those attached to a house
 Total other residential
 Total residential
 Retail and wholesale trade buildings
 Transport buildings
 Commercial buildings n.e.c
 Commercial buildings - Total
 Factories and other secondary production buildings
 Agricultural and aquacultural buildings
 Other industrial buildings n.e.c.
 Industrial buildings - Total
 Education buildings
 Religious buildings
 Aged care facilities
 Health buildings
 Entertainment and recreation buildings
 Short term accommodation buildings
 Other non-residential n.e.c.
 Other non-residential - Total
 Total non-residential
 Dwellings excluding new residential
 Dwellings excluding houses
Type of workNew
 Total alterations and additions (incl. refurbishment and conversion)
Data itemsValue of work done during quarter ($m)
 Value of work yet to be done ($m)
 Value of work in pipeline ($m)
 Value of work not yet commenced ($m)
 Value of work commenced ($m)
 Value of work completed ($m)
 Value of work under construction ($m)
 Dwelling units not yet commenced (no.)
 Dwelling units commenced (no.)
 Dwelling units completed (no.)
 Dwelling units under construction (no.)
Data files

Data Explorer datasets

Caution: Data in the Data Explorer is currently released after the 11:30am release on the ABS website. Please check the reference period when using Data Explorer.

Building Activity by state - value of building work and number of dwellings commenced, completed, under construction and in the pipeline.

About this issue

This publication updates the preliminary estimates released in Construction Work Done, Australia on 25 May 2022. The data in this publication are based on a response rate of approximately 85% of the value of building work done during the quarter. This is lower than the average response rate due to difficulties collecting data as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The data are subject to revision when returns from the following quarter are processed. Final data for the March 2022 quarter will be released in the next release of this publication, Building Activity, Australia on 19 October 2022.

Several time series spreadsheets contain 'np' (not available for publication) annotations from the September quarter 2012 onwards. This is due to confidential data being contained in these series.


For inquiries about these and related statistics, contact the Customer Assistance Service via the ABS website Contact Us page. The ABS Privacy Policy outlines how the ABS will handle any personal information that you provide to us.

Changes this release


Compared to the estimate published in Building Activity, Australia December 2021 released on 13 April 2022:

  • the total value of work done in Australia during the December 2021 quarter has been revised upwards by $283.3m or 0.9% (original, current price). 
  • the total value of work commenced in Australia during the December 2021 quarter has been revised upwards $2,664.8m or 7.7% (original, current price). There was an upward revision to total non-residential commencements of $1,150.1m (8.8%), and an upward revision to total residential commencements of $1,514.8m (7.0%).
  • the number of dwelling unit commencements in the December 2021 quarter has been revised upwards by 2,310.2 dwellings or 4.5% (original).

For the March Building Activity release each year, the ABS publishes revisions that have been made to Building Activity data prior to the December quarter. In this release, revisions have been provided back to September quarter 2016. Refer to the methodology for more information about revisions.

Suspension of trend series

The trend series attempts to measure underlying behaviour in construction activity. This measurement will be significantly affected by changes to regular patterns in activity during this time, as the construction industry faces on-going uncertainty. If the trend estimates in this publication were to be calculated without fully accounting for this irregular event, they would likely provide a misleading view of underlying building activity.

It may be some time before the underlying trend in building activity can be accurately estimated. The trend series have therefore been suspended starting from June 2020. The trend series will be reinstated when more certainty emerges in the underlying trend. 

Previous catalogue number

This release previously used catalogue number 8752.0.

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