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Renovation activity fizzling out

29 August 2014 Staff Reporter

Despite the growing strength of the housing sector, the value of major refurbishment work is dropping.

New figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) show the value of alterations or additions to residential properties declined by 2.4 per cent during the June 2014 quarter.

Housing Industry Association (HIA) economist Diwa Hopkins said the results were disappointing and suggested the sector was subdued.

“Data from the March 2014 quarter was displaying tentative signs of improvement,” she said.

“Obviously we’d be hoping for this to continue in the June quarter, notwithstanding the less than auspicious results from today’s data release.”

Nonetheless, the residential construction sector overall is continuing to gain momentum.

According to ABS figures, the value of residential building work climbed by 2.2 per cent compared to the March quarter, and 9.6 per cent compared to June last year.

Detached houses are regaining their dominance in the new build sector, Ms Hopkins suggested.

“A closer look at these preliminary results shows the detached house segment was the key driver of growth in residential building during the June 2014 quarter, compared with the March quarter, when multi-unit building led the charge,” she said.

Renovation activity fizzling out
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