By Eleanore D. Sanchez

Builders started more new houses in the financial year 2015/2016, according to industry data.

A report from the Housing Industry Association and Colorbond steel, the largest 100 builders in Australia started building 69,161 dwellings in 205/2016. The industry this year broke the record made in 2003/2004 when builders started 69, 100 houses. 

Further, the report says that recent data reflects four years of sustained growth in the development sector.

“A key focus during this record new home building cycle has been on the changing composition of new dwelling supply, particularly the increased volume and share of medium/high density (MHD) dwellings,” HIA chief economist Harley Dale said. “The latest HOUSING 100 results reflect this changing dynamic of Australia’s new home construction landscape.”

Dale also said that the industry’s “short-term outlook is healthy.” However, he also said that the “record level of MHD product in the pipeline provides the Australian economy with an unprecedented degree of uncertainty regarding the timing and magnitude of the down cycle”.

“Beyond this year, the housing pond becomes muddier,” he added. “The broad brush approach to credit restrictions applied by APRA, together with the cash-grab transaction costs levied by some state governments on foreign investors, exacerbate the downside risks to new home construction and therefore the broader domestic economy.”