Building approvals in Warrnambool are tracking above average in a positive signal for the city with $83.7 million worth of works given the tick of approval in nine months.
Data over the past five years shows that Warrnambool's building approvals have averaged about $100 million each year.
The city council's chief executive officer Peter Schneider said for the nine months to the end of March this year, building approvals were tracking above the average of previous years.
He said the pipeline - by both number and value - of potential development proposals in pre-planning stage continued to be strong, which was a positive sign.
The most up-to-date data shows so far this financial year there have been $83.7 million worth of projects approved which is made up of $58.7 million in residential construction and $25 million in non-residential projects.
Late last year, it was revealed that confidence in Warrnambool's building sector was on a high with more than $27 million worth of building permits issued in the city in first three months of the year financial year.
Last financial year there were $110.4 million worth of building permits issued in Warrnambool which was slightly down on 2017-18 where building activity was $118.8 million.
In 2016-17 it was $116.6 million and in 2015-16 $97.8 million.
Warrnambool's statistics so far indicate it is bucking the trend with the Housing Industry Association this week revising down its forecasts in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
HIA Victorian executive director Fiona Nield said forecasts expected housing starts in Victoria to be down by 12.7 per cent this financial year and to decline by a further 33.8 per cent in the 2020-21 financial year.
"If this transpires, the commencement of new homes in Victoria will have fallen over 40 per cent from last year, to next," Ms Nield said.
"The COVID-19 restrictions have caused a shock to the economy in recent months through lower sales and high levels of cancellations which will see a contraction of home building activity in the second half of this year."
"This will see the market at a lower point in December 2020, than it was during the 1990s recession, so stimulating demand so that the existing housing workforce can be retained and can deliver the homes Victorians need this year has never been so important.
"Victoria entered this shock with a stronger economy than the rest of the country, but, the state is especially vulnerable to the loss of international students and tourists.
"Immediate measures are required to stimulate the demand for new homes and to restore confidence among home buyers in making building or renovating investments.
HIA has been put forward a range of measures to encourage buyers back to the market, including a stimulus for home buyers, planning and building reforms, stamp duty concessions and incentives for foreign investors.
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