The Great Australian Dream is going out in South Australia: Bankwest

Staff reporterSeptember 3, 20170 min read

South Australians are falling out of love with the ‘Great Australian Dream’ of a living in a house with yard, more than anywhere else in the nation.

That is according to the Bankwest Housing Density report which is released today and provides an analysis of approvals in medium density and low density housing over both the long and the short term, combined with the latest Census 2016 data.

The report reveals SA saw the lowest growth in standalone housing stock in the country, rising by just 0.5% in the five years to June 2016.

In comparison, levels of medium density housing (apartments) grew by 12.3% in the same period, signaling a shift towards apartment-style living and away from a house with a yard in SA.

Bankwest General Manager Broker Sales Stewart Saunders say the state’s slowing population growth has clearly had an impact on the types of houses found in SA.

“SA’s population growth was just 5.0% in the five years to June 2016 – the lowest of all the states - which will have had undoubted impact on the amount of new homes needed during that period,” said Mr Saunders.

Today’s new report shows the level of low density housing stock is basically static as is the amount of low density housing approvals granted in the 12 months to March – down by just 1.2%.

Medium density approvals for the same short term period declined by 10.7% over the 12 months to March.

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“Looking at the changes in the whole of SA and in Adelaide it’s clear to see the vast majority of new apartment style homes are being built in the capital city,” said Mr Saunders.

“Adelaide accounted for almost (97.6%) all of the state’s new medium density housing approvals in the 12 months to March,” he added.

“When we look again at the broader, national picture the data paints a picture of a country where, overall, there is a continuing long term trend towards apartment style living.

“But what is noticeable in the short term analysis is that we see that over the 12 months to March the country has experienced its biggest decline in the proportion of medium density approvals for four years,” Mr Saunders added.

Medium density approvals declined by 6.5% in the 12 months to March to 110,471, down from 118,156 the previous year.

This national decline was largely driven by declines at a state level in Queensland (down 25.6%), and Western Australia (down 27.1%).

Mr Saunders said the annual Housing Density Report had been produced as part of Bankwest’s ongoing commitment to offer insights on economic data, trends and issues of value to its customers, businesses, communities and policy makers.

“Bankwest is committed to helping customers and local businesses achieve what matters, contributing to the development of our communities and being a positive voice in the debate on the future of the economy.”

Staff reporter

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