National residential construction costs increased 9.0% over the 12 months to March 2022, according to CoreLogic’s Cordell Construction Cost Index.
That was the highest annual growth rate on record apart from the introduction of the GST in 2001, and means Australians are having to pay more money to build or buy new homes.
It’s hard to know whether the growth in construction costs is trending up or down: costs rose 2.4% in the first quarter of 2022, which was significantly higher than the previous quarter (1.1%) but lower than the quarter before that (3.8%).
“Timber costs continue to rise, with cladding, decking and other timber items affected,” according to CoreLogic construction cost estimation manager John Bennett.
“Steep rises in metal prices are also now flowing through to the market, with structural steel, fixings and metal components hit hard.
“We continued to see volatility in the rest of the market, with imported products the most vulnerable due to elevated shipping costs. Rising fuel costs are also on the radar and we have continued to see further increases in the cost of other materials.”