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Thursday, 5 December 1974

Mr McLeay asked the Minister for Housing and Construction, upon notice:

(   1 ) What items are included under the Consumer Price Index sub-groups of (a) home ownership and (b) house price, repairs and maintenance.

(2)   In general terms does part ( 1 ) (a) refer to movements in the cost of 'lived in' homes and part ( 1 ) (b) to the cost of new building.

(3)   Is there statistical information available on the increases for the June 1974 quarter in the cost of land and interest charges on house purchase.

(4)   What was the average cost of ( a ) all lived in dwellings sold and (b) all new dwellings completed in the June quarter.

(5)   What was the increase in dollars per week for the quarter for parts (l)(a) and (b) based on the Consumer Price Index results of 7. 1 per cent and 7.7 per cent respectively.

Mr Les Johnson (HUGHES, NEW SOUTH WALES) - The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(   1 ) and (2) The Commonwealth Statistician advises that Home ownership' is the title given to the sub-group combination of three items contained in the Housing Group of the Consumer Price Index, namely ' House price' ' Local government rates and charges': and 'Repairs and maintenance'. These three important elements in the cost of home ownership are measured for the index by applying to a basic expenditure weight for each item the percentage movement shown by an index of price change for that item. For 'house price' the index measures change in the purchase price of new houses. For 'repairs and maintenance' it measures changes in retail prices of paints, paint brushes, other representative materials and costs of tradesmen's labour used in the repair and maintenance of houses. A detailed description of the 'Housing' group, together with other material concerning the Consumer Price Index, is contained in the annual Labour Report and in the supplement to the March quarter 1974 bulletin. This material will be made available to the honourable member.

(3)   The Department of Housing and Construction has been endeavouring for some time to build up a series of land price statistics. The Department of Urban and Regional Development is also working in close collaboration with my Department on this matter. However, it is extremely difficult to build up a reliable statistical series of land price statistics for many reasons including availability and consistency of data, and the very heterogeneous nature of residential sites.

Although no statistical series has as yet been constructed, some comprehensive information has been collected by my Department on land price movements.

The table below shows movements in land prices in the years for which data are available. Statistics for Brisbane. Adelaide and Hobart are obtained from the ValuerGeneral 's Department in each State and although they cover all sales transactions, not all transactions are included in the quarter in which they occurred. Sydney and Melbourne data are based on a small sample of residential' land sales and relate to the period in which sales occurred. The survey is undertaken by Philip Shrapnel & Co. Pty Limited. No reliable information is as yet available for land price movements in Perth.



Movements in interest rates on housing loans from the major institutional lenders during the June quarter of 1974 arc shown in the following table:


(4)   Information on the average cost of all lived-in dwellings sold is not available. The Commonwealth Statistician advises that the average cost of all new dwellings completed in Australia for the March quarter 1974 is $14,723. This is the latest available figure. The average cost of all new dwellings refers to both private and government-owned selfcontained dwelling units (e.g. houses, flats, semi-detached home units, villa units, duplexes, and so on). Non self-contained dwelling units such as may be found in hotels, motels and institutions are not included as dwellings. Temporary or make-shift dwellings are also excluded.

(5)   The Statistician informs me that he does not calculate CIP results in monthly terms.

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