Home building approvals rose by 8.5% in July – the biggest monthly increase since 2014.

The high-rise approvals component increased 23% in the month, resulting in a 12% increase in the number of dwellings approved, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

While total dwelling approvals had only recovered around a third of the 20% decline since the pandemic began, there were 8,852 detached houses approved in July, a rate similar to that before the pandemic.

ABS director of construction statistics Daniel Rossi says the July figures “likely re ect improved consumer sentiment in May, on the back of falling virus cases and easing of restrictions”.

Approvals for private sector houses rose by 16% in Queensland; 14% in NSW and 6% in Victoria. Approvals fell in Western Australia by 3% and South Australia by 2%. Westpac economist Matthew Hassan says: “The big picture is of a solid July lift that reflects a boost from the Federal Government’s HomeBuilder scheme and the cycling of direct disruptions from the COVID shutdown”.