New home sales increased in December, marking a third consecutive monthly rise.
According to the Housing Industry Association's (HIA's) New Home Sales report, total seasonally-adjusted new home sales increased by 6.2 per cent in December 2012.
New home sales increased by 3.3 per cent over the December 2012 quarter, but were still 12.7 per cent lower than the level of sales during the same quarter in 2011.
“The promising headline rise last December was driven by both detached house and multi-unit sales,” HIA economist Geordan Murray said.
“Furthermore, if we look at the under-performing market for 2012 - detached houses - the December improvement was broad-based as sales increased in all but one of the surveyed states.
“However, the overall result for 2012 leaves plenty of room for improvement. Detached house sales were weak throughout the year and compared with 2011, were down by 22.7 per cent.
“On the other hand, multi-unit sales were the star performer of 2012. They recovered from the record lows endured in 2011 and increased by 24.1 per cent over 2012.”
Mr Murray said he hoped further signs of a new home building recovery will emerge in coming months.
In December 2012, detached house sales increased by 7.1 per cent in New South Wales, 6.0 per cent in Victoria, 3.8 per cent in Queensland, and 12.2 per cent in Western Australia.
Sales eased by 1.8 per cent in South Australia, following three consecutive previous rises.