The residential building industry continues to be confident despite the decline in the September quarter as the housing upturn consolidates and responds to changing market conditions.

According to Peter Jones, Chief Economist, Master Builders Australia , the residential building upturn looks set to hold at strong levels as apartment approvals take a breather following the previous red hot growth phase.

He explained that September’s 11 per cent seasonally adjusted decline was driven by a fall of 22 per cent seasonally in units and apartments mainly due to the longer lead times in gaining approvals for apartment developments, and is expected to recover.

He noted that builders will be looking for a lift in approvals for detached houses to keep momentum in the housing upswing.

Peter Jones said that the number of approvals in the three months to September topped 50,000 for an annualised 200,000 following on from the 194,000 recorded in financial year 2013/14. He added that two of the nation’s smaller housing sectors, Tasmania and South Australia respectively recorded rises of 7.1 per cent and 2.8 per cent seasonally adjusted.