Demographics statistics released by the ABS indicate the rising housing demand is being driven by the increasing population in Australia. The Housing Industry Association (HIA), the voice of Australia’s residential building industry said that the country has added 396,000 people this year alone.

With the total population at 23.32 million by the end of 2013, Australia is seeing a population growth of 1.7 per cent over the year, says HIA Economist Geordan Murray.

The natural increase in population (births minus deaths) added 160,357 people in 2013, which was slightly lower than the previous year but still contributed 0.7 percentage points to the overall annual population growth.

Population growth due to net overseas migration slowed to 235,797 in 2013. This segment of population growth contributed 1.0 percentage points to the overall annual population growth.

Geordan Murray says NSW and WA are the two strongest drivers among all states behind the recent surge in new home building; Victoria also continues to record strong population growth.

Whereas NSW population grew by 1.5 per cent during 2013, WA recorded a population growth of 2.9 per cent. Growth due to interstate migration has slowed significantly while growth due to overseas migration is also showing signs of moderating.

Demographic statistics in other states and territories: The population grew by 1.9 per cent in Victoria, 1.7 per cent in Queensland, 0.9 per cent in South Australia, 0.3 per cent in Tasmania, 1.7 per cent in the Northern Territory, and 1.6 per cent in the ACT.