HomeBuilder halts Australian home sales decline

Friday 21 Aug 2020

The HomeBuilder package has halted the decline in new Australian home sales, reversing a downward trend in the three months to May, according to new data. The Housing Industry Association’s (HIA) latest data has revealed that in the two months since June, new home sales jumped by 64.4 per cent from the preceding two months.

HIA chief economist Tim Reardon said he is cautious about over-interpreting the data from only two months but reiterated that the data collected thus far has clearly indicated that the federal government’s HomeBuilder package will assist with protecting jobs in the sector in the second half of 2020 and into 2021.

However, he said additional sales data in August will be required before drawing concrete conclusions. “Housing data has been ricocheting through the COVID-19 period,” Mr Reardon said. “New home sales are highly reactive to changes in consumer confidence and collapsed in the three months to May 2020. The announcement of HomeBuilder, together with the easing of restrictions across most jurisdictions has seen confidence in the market improve.”

Since the introduction of HomeBuilder, sales in Western Australia have increased by 170.6 per cent, while sales in South Australia increased by 142.1 per cent, and Victoria posted a 39.5 per cent increase. Queensland increased by 42.4 per cent, while NSW increased by 9.6 per cent during this period.

Commenting on the data released by the HIA, federal Assistant Treasurer Michael Sukkar said the HomeBuilder scheme is achieving its objective of protecting tradies’ jobs and creating jobs in the construction industry during the COVID-19 crisis. “In the two months since June, Australia’s major builders have reported that new home sales have increased by more than 64 per cent over the preceding two months,” Mr Sukkar said.

The AU$688-million HomeBuilder scheme provides a AU$25,000 grant to owner-occupiers “substantially renovating” or building a new home from 4 June to 31 December 2020.

Source: mortgagebusiness.com.au

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