Dwelling commencements fell in the September 2010 quarter after a number of federal government housing initiatives were withdrawn.
According to ABS data, total housing starts declined by 13.2 per cent in the third quarter of calendar 2010, in a worse-than-expected result.
"Every category of dwelling starts fell, across both the private and public sectors, with the magnitude of the result driven largely by the fall in public sector ‘other dwellings' which is down by 26.6 per cent in the September quarter," Housing Industry Association senior economist Andrew Harvey said.
The fall in public sector dwelling starts in NSW and Queensland contributed much to the headline result, with public sector starts in the two states falling from an abnormally high 3,245 in the June 2010 quarter to 1,321 in the September 2010 quarter in original terms.
"Leaving aside the public sector result, private sector detached house starts fell by 4.3 per cent and private sector ‘other dwellings' fell by 13.5 per cent, in the quarter."
"The results are disappointing in that they confirm HIA's view that we are heading into a period of much weaker atmospherics for residential building, and given the September quarter result is ahead of any impact from the Melbourne Cup day interest rate hikes we are in for a pretty soft 2011 in terms of housing starts."