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Building Approvals, Australia

Provides the number of dwelling units and value of buildings approved

Reference period
May 2022
Released
4/07/2022
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Key statistics

The May 2022 trend estimate: 

 

  • Total dwellings approved fell 1.5%.
  • Private sector houses approved fell 0.5%, while private sector dwellings excluding houses fell 2.5%.
  • The value of non-residential building fell 1.5%.

The May 2022 seasonally adjusted estimate: 

  • Total dwellings approved rose 9.9%.
  • Private sector houses approved fell 2.7%, while private sector dwellings excluding houses rose 32.0%.
  • The value of non-residential building rose 16.5%.

Reinstatement of trend series

The trend series for Building Approvals has been reviewed and been reinstated.

Further details on the reinstatement of trend, is available in the Data Note section below.

Dwellings approved

May key figures
 May-22Monthly changeYearly change
no.%%
TREND   
Total dwelling units approved15,487-1.5-23.4
Private sector houses9,808-0.5-25.3
Private sector dwellings excluding houses5,304-2.5-21.9
SEASONALLY ADJUSTED   
Total dwelling units approved16,3909.9-20.9
Private sector houses9,687-2.7-29.5
Private sector dwellings excluding houses6,37632.0-5.4

(a) Trend break added to 'Total dwellings approved' trend series for February 2021

The trend estimate for total dwellings approved fell 1.5% in May, this follows a 1.2% fall in April.

The seasonally adjusted estimate for the number of dwellings approved in Australia rose 9.9% in May. This follows a 3.9% fall in April.

(a) Trend break added to 'Private sector house' trend series for February 2021

The trend estimate for private sector house approvals fell 0.5% in May, this follows a 0.8% fall in April. Private sector dwellings excluding houses fell 2.5%, following a 1.4% fall in April.

The seasonally adjusted estimate for private sector house approvals fell 2.7% in May, to 9,687, following a 0.2% decline in April. Private sector dwellings excluding houses rose 32.0%, following a 8.1% fall in April.

Trend summary, by state

Across Australia, the number of dwelling approvals decreased in Northern Territory (-3.7%), Victoria (-2.8%), Tasmania (-2.5%), New South Wales (-2.2%), and the Australian Capital Territory (-2.1%), in trend terms. Dwelling approvals rose in Western Australia (1.9%), Queensland (0.8%), and South Australia (0.4%).

Approvals for private sector houses fell in New South Wales (-2.3%) and Victoria (-0.4%). Queensland (2.0%), Western Australia (0.6%), and South Australia (0.1%) rose, in trend terms.

Dwellings approved, states and territories, trend
 Private sector housesPrivate sector housesTotal dwelling unit approvalsTotal dwelling unit approvals
no.Monthly % changeno.Monthly % change
New South Wales2,317-2.34,171-2.2
Victoria3,057-0.45,017-2.8
Queensland2,1062.03,0550.8
South Australia7850.11,0540.4
Western Australia1,1860.61,3961.9
Tasmanianana231-2.5
Northern Territorynana52-3.7
Australian Capital Territorynana507-2.1
Australia9,808-0.515,487-1.5

 

Seasonally adjusted summary, by state

By state, the number of dwelling approvals rose in Western Australia (38.7%), Tasmania (26.8%), Queensland (20.9%) and New South Wales (4.7%), in seasonally adjusted terms. Dwelling approvals decreased in South Australia (-21.3%) and Victoria (-6.6%).

Approvals for private sector houses fell in New South Wales (-11.1%), South Australia (-4.1%), Queensland (-1.3%), and Victoria (-0.9%). Western Australia (4.9%) rose, in seasonally adjusted terms.

Dwellings approved, states and territories, seasonally adjusted
 Private sector housesPrivate sector housesTotal dwelling unit approvalsTotal dwelling unit approvals
no.Monthly % changeno.Monthly % change
New South Wales2,148-11.14,2364.7
Victoria3,047-0.94,772-6.6
Queensland2,104-1.33,31220.9
South Australia786-4.11,053-21.3
Western Australia1,2314.91,79338.7
Tasmanianana30326.8
Northern Territorynananana
Australian Capital Territorynananana
Australia9,687-2.716,3909.9

 

Value of building approved

Value of building approved, by building type
 TrendTrendSeasonally adjustedSeasonally adjusted
 $mMonthly % change$mMonthly % change
New residential building6,347.81.26,615.45.9
Alterations and additions to residential building988.60.01,027.13.8
Total residential building7,336.41.07,642.55.6
Non-residential building4,987.1-1.55,445.716.5
Total building12,323.50.013,088.29.9

 

(a) Trend break added to 'Total residential' trend series for September 2020 and February 2021.

Value of building approved, trend

The trend estimate of the value of total building approved was flat in May. The value of total residential building increased by 1.0%, following a 0.6% rise in April. The rise in total residential building value was driven by a 1.2% rise in value of new residential building approved, while the value of alterations and additions was flat.

The trend estimate of the value of non-residential building fell 1.5%, following a 0.4% decrease in April.

Value of building approved, seasonally adjusted

The seasonally adjusted estimate of the value of total building approved rose 9.9% in May. The value of total residential building increased by 5.6%, following a 4.6% rise in April. The rise in total residential building value was comprised of a 5.9% rise in value of new residential building approved and a 3.8% increase in alterations and additions.

The seasonally adjusted estimate of the value of non-residential building rose 16.5%, following a 16.8% decrease in April.

Data downloads

Time series spreadsheets

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 time period when using Data Explorer.

Help for: Data Explorer Datasets

Building Approvals by Greater Capital Cities Statistical Area (GCCSA) and above - Number and value of approvals, monthly, July 2001 onwards

Data notes

This publication provides the number of dwelling units and value of buildings approved released in Building Approvals, Australia on 4 July 2022.

Small area data cubes and CSV files will be made available in an “Additional Information” release five business days after the main publication. These will be for Statistical Areas Level 2 and Local Government Areas. Release dates are published under the “Forthcoming Issues” section of the publication and in the ABS Release Calendar.

A number of time series spreadsheets contain ‘np’ (not available for publication) annotations. This is due to confidential data being contained in these series.

Review of seasonal adjustment

In early 2020 the ABS advised that the method used to produce seasonally adjusted estimates would be changed from the ‘concurrent adjustment’ method to the ‘forward factors’ method for series with significant and prolonged impacts from COVID-19. Given the ongoing disruption during the COVID-19 period and continuing use of forward factors, extraordinary annual reviews of seasonally adjusted series are progressively being undertaken across the ABS statistics programs.

The extraordinary annual review process assesses each series individually to determine how observations from 2020 and 2021 should be treated and determine the most appropriate approach (concurrent adjustment or forward factors) for estimating seasonal adjustment factors in the immediate future. Revisions arising from the annual review are relatively minor for most series, but series which have used forward factors are likely to have larger revisions because the seasonal factor estimates are annually updated to incorporate information from the previous year's observations.

The outcome of the review for Building Approvals statistics is that concurrent seasonal adjustment will be reinstated for all series, as COVID-19 is no longer having significant and prolonged impacts on the series.

Further information can be found here: https://www.abs.gov.au/articles/methods-changes-during-covid-19-period

Review of trend suspension

In early 2020 the ABS suspended trend series, in addition to adopting forward factors to produce seasonally adjusted series. The trend estimate indicates the medium to long direction of a time series. To estimate the trend, the effect of significant events like disruptions associated with COVID-19 are assigned to either the trend or irregular components of a time series. The rationale for suspending trend series was that it was unknown whether the impacts from COVID-19 would be short or medium to long-term, and therefore there was high probability of needing to significantly revise initial assessments of the impacts of COVID-19 on the trend.

The trend series for Building Approvals has been reviewed and been reinstated.

Over the last two years, the impacts of COVID-19 on Building Approvals series have not caused multiple abrupt changes in the series level in short succession, and so it is appropriate to describe a trend level through the past two years. As a result, Building Approvals will also be publishing a trend over the previous two years for relevant series.

Revisions this month

In this release, revisions are provided for the time period from July 2020 to April 2022. Further information about potential sources of revisions can be found in the feature article released with the January 2016 Building Approvals publication - "Revisions to Building Approval Statistics".

Revisions to the total number of dwelling units approved in this issue are:

 Financial year
Dwellings revised by State2020-212021-22
New South Wales1813
Victoria-66
Queensland18-171
South Australia--4
Western Australia-45
Tasmania46
Northern Territory--
Australian Capital Territory--
Total40-45

Enquiries

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Previous catalogue number

This release previously used catalogue number 8731.0.

Article archive

Previous feature articles

New houses being built on smaller blocks, April 2022

Small Area Dwelling Stock Removals, September 2021

National, state & territory level dwelling demolition approvals, June 2021

Residential Construction and the Finance Process, September 2020

Small area demolition approvals, August 2020

Australians building houses on smaller blocks, July 2020

Characteristics of apartment approvals, September 2019

Growth in approvals, December 2018

Change in composition of dwelling approvals, July 2016

Implementation of the Australian Statistical Geography Standard in ABS Building Approvals collection, April 2011

Average floor area of new residential dwellings, February 2010

Average quarterly completion times for new houses, July 2008

Changes in the mix of dwelling types, April 2008

Average floor area of new residential dwellings, February 2008

Are we building on smaller blocks?, July 2004

Focus on the South Australian Construction Industry, June 2004

Focus on the Tasmanian Construction Industry, June 2004

Focus on the Queensland Construction Industry, May 2004

Focus on the Victorian Construction Industry, April 2004

Engineering Construction, March 2004

Focus on the New South Wales Construction Industry, February 2004

Average floor area of new dwellings, December 2003

Work done on housing jobs each quarter, March 2003

Inner city development, December 2002

Functional classification of buildings, August 2002

Building activity in Sydney and Melbourne, July 2002

Changes in the mix of dwelling types, May 2002

Construction Industry information, April 2002

Average value of new houses, March 2002

Largest and fastest growing areas in Australia, November 2001

Functional classification of buildings, August 2001

Average floor area of new dwellings, July 2001

Identifying growth areas, May 2001

Additional Building and Construction feature articles can be found in Feature Articles by Catalogue Number.