In a similar fashion to the rest of the country, the Queensland construction industry has picked up its game and beginning to experience an up-turn in activity.
With this in mind, it is pleasing to report the recently released ABS data for Building and Construction Activity in the December 2014 quarter. According to the figures, the Sunshine State is working its way back to pre-Global Financial Crisis (GFC) levels with units leading the way.
In the December quarter, there were 9,330 Queensland commencements- supporting the superb September 2014 quarter which saw a massive 10,782 new starts. Just under half (44 per cent) or 4,072 of these commencements were units, highlighting the demand shift from large homes to affordable living.
Growing population, growing demand
Due to Australia's expanding population, house prices are soaring, increasing demand on construction businesses to continue building new dwellings. According to Master Builders, Queensland need to construct around 40,000 in the 2014-2015 financial year to keep up with demand.
Master Builders Deputy Executive Director Paul Bidwell said the great rate of approvals to start 2015 has put Queensland on track to reach this target.
"Queensland has been clawing its way back each year since the GFC hit in 2008," he said in an April 16 media statement.
"This financial year, we are now at the half-way point with Queensland sitting at a total of just over 20,000 commencements - half-way towards the 40,000 goal."
It is important to remember that as the GFC took hold of Australia - building activity slowed to a crawl. Approvals fell to around 28,000, close to half what was recorded in 2007-08 (45,000).
Hope for jobs
As well as providing housing solutions to the expanding population, this lift in the Queensland construction industry is expected to extend to employment.
"That's good news for industry and the Queensland economy, with high levels of building approvals being converted to work," Mr Bidwell stated.
This statement was reaffirmed by CommSec State of the States Report. In comparison with the other states and territories, Queensland ranked third in construction work and third in population growth.
Queensland Treasurer Curtis Pitt explained this result in more detail.
"There were encouraging signs in Queensland's construction industry in particular, which is up 10.7 per cent on our decade average, according to CommSec," he said in an April 20 media statement.
"We're seeing some encouraging signs for Queensland amid challenging economic conditions."
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