The number of dwellings approved in November shows a drop of more than 18% over the year.
The figure fell by 2.3% over the month in trend terms, according to data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).
According to the figures, the decrease was driven by private sector dwellings, excluding houses, which fell 5%. Private sector houses also declined, by 0.3%.
Among the states and territories, dwelling approvals fell by 9.5% in the ACT, by 6.2% in South Australia and by 4.5% in Western Australia. Queensland also saw a drop of 3.4% and New South Wales by 3.1%.
Only two states recorded an increase in the number of approvals. Tasmania saw the biggest rise with 3.5% and Victoria experienced a 0.6% rise. The Northern Territory saw no movement.
For private sector houses, Victoria saw a 0.7% increase from October and New South Wales saw a 0.1% increase, but every other state experienced falls.
Queensland had the biggest drop of 1.8%, followed by South Australia with 1% and Western Australia with 0.7%.
In seasonally adjusted terms the drop was even bigger. Total dwellings fell by 9.1% in November, driven by a 17.9% decrease in private dwellings excluding houses. Private houses fell 2.6% in seasonally adjusted terms.
According to those seasonally adjusted figures, which adjust the figures based on seasonal effects, there has been a 32.8% drop in the number of dwellings approved over the previous year.
The value of total building approved fell 0.8% in November, in trend terms, and has fallen for 12 months. The value of residential building fell 1.6%, while non-residential building rose 0.6%.