Unit sales soar as detached homes dip

A growing appetite for apartments has driven an ongoing increase in the sale of new homes nationally.

New home sales posted a 2.2 per cent monthly increase in November after climbing 3.0 per cent in October, according to the Housing Industry Association (HIA).

Sales of multi-unit dwellings in October and November reached their highest level since September 2003 – this was accompanied by a dip in detached house sales.

HIA chief economist Harley Dale said the December results were also likely to show continued growth in multi-unit sales.

“Upward momentum was evident in both detached house and multi-unit construction in 2013/14,” Mr Dale said.

“However, more recently, momentum has been concentrated in multi-units in a situation akin to stage one of the current up-cycle back in 2012/13.

“The key leading indicator measures of building approvals and new home sales suggest this re-concentration of growth in the multi-unit segment will persist into 2015.”

Mr Dale said housing policy reform was needed to rebalance the market and drive growth in detached house construction. This, in turn, would deliver productivity gains for the broader Australian economy.

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