This Week in Real Estate -15 March 2024

Housing Solution Up In The Air

The Gold Coast is the perfect place for airspace development, according to a leading proponent of the concept.

Association of Rooftop and Airspace Development president Warren Livesey, says airspace above strata unit blocks in Australia is an untapped $100 billion-plus market.

He says it could include housing extensions, buying a neighbour’s airspace for a view, or strata apartment owners banding together to sell rooftop airspace to a developer.

Livesey says there have been 180,000 airspace homes approved in London since 2020, 110,000 in Paris and 100,000 in Barcelona.

Livesey promoted the concept to the Federal Parliament last week. After initial discussions with the Gold Coast Chamber of Commerce, he hopes to pitch the idea to the Gold Coast City Council.

“Ultimately by utilising airspace, we are creating additional development sites in and around existing infrastructure. You’re not creating density where there was none, you’re just maximising it.”

Livesey says as well as increasing housing supply, airspace development can help boost the financial resources of building body corporate services to help maintain facilities.


Gold Coast Games Pitch

Leveraging existing Gold Coast venues for the 2032 Olympics could deliver up to $5 billion in savings, according to a submission by the Gold Coast City Council.

Its proposal to the 60-day review of the Olympic and Paralympic Games Brisbane 2032 Venue Master Plan says it would be a “financially prudent, responsible, and sustainable way” to hold the event

In the submission, Gold Coast City CEO Tim Baker says the Gold Coast has world-class facilities already available which could be used.

It nominates key venues including the Gold Coast Aquatic Centre, Heritage Bank Stadium and the Gold Coast Hockey Centre as suitable venues.

The Gold Coast Aquatic and Hockey Centres were both upgraded for the Commonwealth Games and can host more than 10,000 spectators.

“These are existing permanent facilities, so the savings are enormous,” the submission says.

It says $2.5 billion could be saved by using the Gold Coast Aquatic Centre at Southport for the Games and a further $2 million by using the Gold Coast Hockey Centre.


 Stamp Duty Reform

Abolishing stamp duty would immediately help more people buy property, according to new research.

Analysis by e61 Institute and PropTrack shows that increasing the rate of stamp duty by just one percentage point reduces the number of homes sold by more than 7%.

It says if a state such as NSW abolished stamp duty entirely, an extra 100,000 people would be able to buy every year.

The report says stamp duty doesn’t just affect the property market. It blames stamp duty for making it difficult or too expensive for people to change jobs if it involves moving to a new location.

“Job mobility has slowed over the past couple of decades, which has weighed on productivity and coincides with a surge in the cost of stamp duty,” it says.

“Meanwhile, older households – many of whom have numerous spare bedrooms – are discouraged from downsizing.

“Discouraging people from moving has all sorts of damaging flow-on effects, and these problems are becoming increasingly acute because the impost of stamp duty has grown considerably relative to previous generations,” it says.


Buyers Remain Optimistic

Home buyers believe now is a good time to buy, because of predictions that property prices will continue to rise this year.

The Residential Audience Pulse Survey released this week, shows 40% of buyers think property prices will increase in the next six months.

Despite this 35% of respondents believe now is the time to buy, up 9% on the previous quarter.

The report says this suggests that while apprehensions exist, many buyers remain optimistic about market conditions. The survey says almost a quarter of consumers aged 18 and above are actively looking to buy.

The biggest motivator for buying was a lifestyle change (32%), followed by making financial gains (18%), downsizing (13%), retirement (12%), and upsizing (12%).

About a third of respondents say they believe demand for property will be even stronger in the coming months.

First-home buyers look set to not be as active with a drop of 3% compared to the previous quarter who are looking to secure a property in the next five years.

4600 people were surveyed for the report, which examined buyers’ perspectives on the market.


More Women in Construction

The number of women working in the construction industry is on the rise according to analysis by the HIA.

HIA Senior Executive Director, of Compliance and Workplace Relations, Melissa Adler says while figures are still lower than they would like to be, it is rising steadily.

“Currently, women make up approximately 15% of the construction industry, but these figures do not tell the whole story, with the focus too often only on onsite trades,” she says.

“The construction industry is filled with a wide range of opportunities for women and we are already seeing a larger percentage of women taking on roles in construction and thriving.”

Adler says the industry is now training more female workers than ever before.

“There are nearly 6,000 female apprentices and trainees undertaking training in the construction industry which is more than double the number in training from 2019,” she says.

“For its part HIA has a strong network of women who work within the construction industry, offering opportunities for professional connections through HIA’s Building Women program nationally, and offering training and apprentice programs with wrap-around mentoring to support young women entering the industry.”



HIA Senior Executive Director, Compliance and Workplace Relations, Melissa Adler

“The construction industry is filled with a wide range of opportunities for women, and we are already seeing a larger percentage of women taking on roles in construction and thriving.”




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