From the CEO

In April 2021, UDIA WA submitted to the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage our very clear position on the proposed Medium Density Code. We support the policy outcomes the Code seeks to achieve. However, R30 and below should not be captured in this piece of policy.

“The Code carries unintended consequences that could be catastrophic, preventing any medium development outside of higher land value areas. Rather than facilitating innovation, it’s overly prescriptive nature will stifle it and in return housing diversity.”

In late August 2022, we wrote to the then Minister for Planning making it clear that the evolution of the MD Code policy had morphed into a ‘one-size fits all’ approach ignoring consumer preference and affordability impacts. Again, reinforcing that R30 and below be removed from the Code and the root of the issues created by poorly designed duplex, triplex and quadplex sites be dealt with in a more bespoke manner that does not significantly impact supply and housing accessibility.

The fascinating observation I’ve made since the Minister for Planning made the decisive call yesterday and the furore that has ensued, is that at the core everyone is on the same page. We all want great design outcomes, more tree canopy and sustainable homes. There is more than one way and one policy to achieve this. Let’s not throw the baby out with the bathwater and focus on the main game. Which right now, is all of those outcomes through the lens of housing affordability and supply in the toughest construction market in recent history.

Respected developers respond and do their best to lead consumer preference through innovative design taking into consideration neighbourhood and streetscape impacts. Ultimately the consumer decides what is and isn’t acceptable and what they will trade off in order to obtain a house that suits their needs & financial capacity. And the developer carries all the risk when pushing the envelope.

UDIA WA welcomes pragmatic approach to Aboriginal Cultural Heritage

Earlier this week UDIA WA welcomed the bold yet necessary decision to reset the legislative framework protecting ACH due to the significant delays the 2021 ACH Act is having on the provision of housing supply.

UDIA has been liaising closely with the State Government over recent days advising that despite best efforts to work with the implementation of the new Act, UDIA on behalf of the development industry came to the view that the Act was unworkable in its current form.

The decision highlights that a one size fits all approach to legislation & policy does not always deliver the best outcome. Whilst mining, farming and development are all equally of the view that the 2021 ACH Act was unworkable, their activities are vastly different though all make a significant economic & social contribution to the State.

UDIA made it clear that just as the State Government is responsible for surveying & mapping bushfire prone areas, sites of State environmental significance and other areas that require protection or mitigation – the State should also take on responsibility for the cost & implementation of the surveying of ACH.

For more information including the core details and what it means for your business read our Member Alert here. To read the Government’s Media Statement, click here and UDIA WA’s Media Statement can be read here.

UDIA WA CEO Tanya Steinbeck was interviewed by ABC News (here) and 6PR (listen from 6:30 here) about this issue on the day of the announcement.

Amendments announced to Medium Density Code

On Wednesday UDIA WA welcomed the announcement from the Minister for Planning on the removal of R30 and R40 from the Medium Density Code (the Code), and deferral of its gazettal.

UDIA WA supports the delivery of high-quality medium density development as a crucial component of delivering housing choice and to support Government’s strategic policy aspirations to create a more compact, connected and liveable city.

While we welcomed the long-anticipated finalisation of the Code to provide greater clarity and certainty for industry in facilitating such outcomes, we have always been clear that as with any new public policy there is a balance to be found to ensure high quality housing that has broad market acceptance is not adversely impacted.

For more information including the core details and what it means for your business read our Member Alert here. To read the Government’s Media Statement, click here and UDIA WA’s Media Statement can be read here.

UDIA WA CEO Tanya Steinbeck was interviewed by ABC Radio Perth (listen from 1:50:45 here) about this issue earlier today.

Urban Development Index

UDIA WA are pleased to release the latest edition of UDIA WA’s Urban Development Index, which provides insights into the performance of the new land market in WA for Q2 2023.

This latest edition highlights that 1,931 lots were sold in the June quarter, a 45% increase on the previous quarter, 16% increase on the same quarter last year and the highest number of lots sold since December 2021.

From a supply perspective 2,362 lots are forecasted to be constructed in the next 0-6 months, 19.5% up on the last quarter with a further 1,763 set to be constructed in the next 6-12 months, 10% up on the number forecasted in the last quarter.

This edition also includes a breakdown of sales figures across the Perth Metropolitan Region and an Executive Summary from Urbis Director David Cresp.

To read the report in full, click here.

In addition to the quarterly report, the full suite of UDI data is available via the Urbis Loop Platform. This interactive dashboard allows you to fully customise and download UDI quarterly lot sales and land supply data at a local government, corridor and regional level. As a UDIA Member you are able to access the UDI data within Urbis Loop. Reach out to for more information and to obtain access details.

Government introduces Duty Amendment Bill to Parliament

Yesterday the State Government introduced the Duties Amendment (Off-the-Plan Concession and Foreign Persons Exemptions) Bill 2023 to Parliament in a bid to simplify the process for receiving transfer duty support when buying off-the-plan apartments in multi-storey developments.

UDIA WA has been advocating strongly for the Off-the-Plan transfer duty rebate to be made permanent or at least extended, for the property purchase threshold to be increased and for it to be re-introduced for projects under construction to support apartment developments, boosting the supply of new homes across the housing continuum.

In response to our advocacy, UDIA WA welcomed the $33 million allocated in the 2023-24 State Budget for a two-year extension of the OTP duty rebate to 30 June 2025 and the increase in the property value thresholds, as well as its conversion to a concession.

UDIA WA is also advocating for:

  1. the Off-the-Plan duty rebate / concession to be reinstated to projects under construction (at a 75% rebate prior to construction commencing and 50% until registration of the strata plan); AND
  2. Removal of the foreign buyer surcharge.

These added measures will assist in building much needed consumer confidence and attract investors in apartment projects thereby improving the availability of rental properties for West Australians.

The Duties Amendment Bill will provide:

  • a 100 per cent duty concession (capped at $50,000) for properties valued up to $650,000 (formerly $500,000); and
  • a concession phasing down to 50 per cent of the duty (capped at $50,000) for properties valued at $750,000 or more (formerly $600,000).

The current scheme was due to expire on 24 October 2023, but has now been extended to 30 June 2025.

Existing foreign developer exemptions will be expanded to remove restrictions on the type of land eligible for a refund of foreign buyers duty if it is acquired for a residential development.

The foreign buyers duty amendments will apply retrospectively from 1 January 2023.

Industry luncheon – registrations close tomorrow!

Registrations for our August Industry Luncheon that will delve into the challenges and opportunities in relation to Perth’s development into a future ready, resilient city close tomorrow.

With the impact of issues such as climate change, population growth, pandemic, supply chain disruptions, cyberattacks (to name just a few of the challenges on our doorstep) today’s ‘new normal’ means responding to these challenges in the planning, design and execution of new development.

What does this mean for the property industry in Perth and regional Western Australia?

This event will consider bigger picture issues in a WA context and provide practical advice and information for the local industry.

Join Sara Stace, Director of Cities at WSP and a panel of local industry experts including Phil Helberg, CEO of Infrastructure WA and Natalie Busch, WA Managing Principal at Hassell as they explore:

  • The challenges facing urban development in Perth in the next 30 – 50 years
  • Applying the 30 minute city and 15 minute neighbourhood concepts to Perth
  • How the WA property industry can act now to contribute to future ready cities in both greenfield and infill contexts
  • Key priorities to focus on now from an industry and government policy perspective to foster action and innovation for the future
  • Strategic infrastructure priorities for Perth/ WA to ensure we are future ready

Register for the event here but be quick as registrations close on Friday 11 August.

Big thanks to Event Sponsor Glen McLeod Legal and Networking Partner for supporting this event.

UDIA National Congress 2024 – Tickets on sale

UDIA National Congress returns to Crown Melbourne on 18-20 March 2024.

This pinnacle national event provides the ideal opportunity to network, engage with and learn from colleagues and industry professionals from across Australia. Following a hugely successful National Congress in Perth this year, the national centrepiece turns its attention to Melbourne for the 2024 edition.

The UDIA National Congress team have been working hard to craft a standout program so you’re ready to conquer 2024.

The 2024 UDIA National Congress will feature high-profile speakers focusing on the urban development industry in Australia, international case studies, and what’s next in terms of innovation and market demand.

Don’t miss this opportunity to network and be a part of the UDIA National Awards for Excellence, which celebrates the best developments across Australia.

Register here but get in quick as there are just 3 weeks left to secure super early bird prices.

For those interested in sponsorship opportunities for the 2024 event, contact UDIA National Congress manager Nichola Byrne, here.

Last chance to nominate for UDIA WA Council

Nominations for eight vacant positions on UDIA WA Council, including the role of President close at 5pm on Monday 14 August.

We are seeking leaders who want to play an active role in shaping the future direction of the Institute and the industry more broadly.

With a newly endorsed Strategic Plan in 2023 and a refreshed Purpose, Vision and Mission, this is a pivotal opportunity to join a team of passionate leaders to drive change.

These eight positions will join ongoing Councillors Jane Bennett (CLE Town Planning), Danielle Davison (Davison Advisory), Richard Pappas (Celsius Property) and Paul Morgan (PEET).

UDIA WA encourages applicants from a diverse range of professional backgrounds and experience to nominate for these leadership roles. Our goal is to establish and maintain a leadership group that reflects the diverse nature of the industry and the communities that we represent.

Nominations close at 5:00pm on Monday 14 August 2023.  Download the relevant documents with all the detailed information on the nominations process and key dates:

  • Council nominations kit here and nomination form here.
  • Access the UDIA WA Constitution here
  • 2023 UDIA WA Policy Priorities here.

The UDIA WA Annual General Meeting will take place on Wednesday 18 October 2023 at the UDIA WA offices from 11:30am.

State Government planning investigations complete

The Cook Government has today announced resolution of the last two Planning Investigation Areas (PIAs), which will open a further 835ha for future urban development in the Perth region and is expected to deliver approximately 9,000 dwellings.

Across the 15 PIAs, approximately 6,400ha of land will be made available to deliver around 85,000 additional dwellings to plan for growth across the Perth and Peel regions to accommodate a population of 3.5 million people.

The Perth and Peel@3.5million subregional planning frameworks, first released in 2018, identified 15 PIAs that warranted further investigation to determine their suitability for a change in land use.

The final designation of approximately 600ha in Jandakot-Treeby and 235ha in North Ballajura, east of Hepburn Avenue, for future urban expansion will guide the long-term development of more than 835 hectares of land in Perth’s northern and southern suburbs.

Further detailed planning was required for each of the areas in conjunction with the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation and Water Corporation to ensure the integrity of the Gnangara and Jandakot water mounds.

Identifying these areas as Urban Expansion in the Perth and Peel@3.5million planning frameworks now enables more detailed planning to be undertaken (Region Scheme and Local Planning Scheme amendments), and structure planning.

Outcomes for the 13 other PIAs were announced in September 2022.

For more information, visit here.