Federal budget outcomes 2019

UDIA National provided a comprehensive overview of the federal budget in relation to the property market across Australia on Tuesday night to all members. In brief, the sustained focus on supercharging infrastructure with the $100 billion national infrastructure package and congestion reduction measures were welcomed.

However, the UDIA is disappointed the Budget did not follow up on last year’s housing affordability initiative, with more funding for catalyst infrastructure to deliver housing through NHFIC.

Read the full UDIA briefing on the federal budget here.

Find the Federal Government Budget Papers here.

National Congress wraps for 2019

UDIA National Congress was hosted on the Gold Coast last week with study tours, plenary sessions and networking events providing delegates from across Australia with a range of opportunities to learn and connect. Last week we provided you with an overview of Wednesday’s plenary sessions including presentations from Joel Kotkin, Susan Pinker and Cameron Kusher.

Thursday (the final day) began with a look at changing demographics and the ‘buyers of tomorrow’ with a thought provoking presentation from Claire Madden on millennials expectations for new homes into the future.

Claire was followed by Richard Florida, well known urbanist and founder of ‘the creative class’, who’s most recent book The New Urban Crisis looks at how the young, affluent and educated are moving back to the cities following years of movement out toward the suburbs.

Richard discussed how this movement is having an impact on affordability, segregation and inequality and the need for more inclusive cities that ensure growth and economic prosperity for all.

Drilling down to a practical housing option to suit changing lifestyle needs, Ben Provan from Open Door provided an outline of co-living housing designs and how his company is one of a growing number in the US and around the world delivering apartments and housing options for people who want to live in a more communal environment, with shared living spaces and amenities that are well managed.

The afternoon sessions focused on changing markets and emerging technologies.  Of particular interest was Michael Marks from Katerra, an ‘end to end’ building service provider that uses the latest technology to streamline and reduce costs in the building process.

Michael outlined how Katerra uses alternative building products such as cross laminated timber and prefabrication as well as producing housing in factories offsite in order to cut construction costs and tackle affordability.

Congress closed with the annual UDIA National Awards for Excellence, with WA’s Yagan Square by the Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority taking out top honours in the Urban Renewal and the prestigious President’s Award.

More information on the award winners here.

Local government act review: phase two

UDIA has made a submission to the state government’s local government act review (phase two) which is aimed at achieving a more ‘agile, smart and inclusive’ local government sector.

In our submission, UDIA outlined our disappointment that some of the issues that we raised in phase one have not been addressed in phase two. Primarily, we are concerned that the review has so far failed to examine local government regulatory compliance and the quality and timeliness of statutory services provided by local government.

UDIA has also suggested that, although development contributions schemes (DCS) are established under the provisions of the Planning and Development Act, we have legitimate concerns regarding the administration and transparency of funds and we have recommended that regulations are developed to ensure administration of funds overseen by local government are properly and transparently reported.

UDIA also made recommendations around rate reductions for Community Title Schemes and minimum population settings for local government wards.

Our full submission can be downloaded here.

Waste advisory group

UDIA will represent the development industry on the newly formed Waste Reform Advisory Group that will advise state government on waste policy and legislation.

This new advisory group will continue the work of the Waste Taskforce and be the ongoing mechanism to ensure up-to-date information on waste matters is maintained.

It will provide advice on the direction and development of waste policy and legislation in Western Australia, including the key reforms outlined in the State’s new waste strategy and the Premier’s priority waste target announced as part of Our Priorities.

The first meeting is anticipated for this month.

Water Corp: standard contribution amounts

The Water Corporation has released the Standard Infrastructure Contribution amounts for 2019/20 financial year, which apply when subdividing land that requires their services or increasing demand for water services.

The Standard Infrastructure Contribution amounts for 2019/20 are as follows:

  • Water $2,469
  • Wastewater $3,110
  • Drainage $130

Based on your demand for water supply, wastewater and drainage services, Standard Infrastructure Contributions will be applied to recover the cost of water supply distribution, wastewater conveyancing and drainage assets required for new developments.

Further information is available on the Water Corporation website at the following locations:

Subdividing – Infrastructure Contributions: https://www.watercorporation.com.au

Building – Infrastructure Contributions https://www.watercorporation.com.au

Feedback requested on:

UDIA is currently working on several submissions on behalf of members. We encourage you to forward any feedback on these items to policy@udiawa.com.au

Draft Position Statement for Tourism in bushfire prone areas (here). Submissions close Friday 12 April, 2019.

Draft Odour Guideline for Prescribed Premises (here). Submissions close Friday 19 April, 2019.

PACT Site Security – March Site Crime Report

PACT investigators liaised with Canning Vale police who executed a search warrant in Forrestdale recovering lights and CCTV cameras stolen from 3 BGC Residential display homes in Madox Estate Piara Waters (as reported last week).

Police also located a large quantity of copper cable and a pulley system in the offenders vehicle, believed to be used to remove copper cable from the ground.

If your project has recently lost copper cable in the southern suburbs call 1800 272 836 or view here.

The month of March has seen a total of 32 reports of burglary, stealing and damage across Perth building sites. Offences include Burglary x 9, Attempted Burglary x 3, Stealing x 1, Damage x 3 and Illegal Rubbish dumping x 2 with 66% of offences occurring in the southern suburbs and Piara Waters the hotspot with 6 offences.

Feedback on Westport: What we have found so far report

The Westport Taskforce – of which UDIA WA is a member – has released the latest edition of the Westport Beacon. The Beacon is a series of mini reports to help stakeholders better understand the complexity of the project.

The current issue is an overview of the feedback received from the community and interest groups on the Westport: What we have found so far report: mysaytransport.wa.gov.au/westportbeacon

UDIA welcomes member comments on feedback to date so that we can effectively represent your views at the Taskforce meetings.

Heritage Council: call for nominations

The state government is seeking nominations from experienced and qualified individuals to become members of the new Heritage Council of WA which will be established under the new Act that was passed in September 2018.

The Heritage Act 2018 requires that Council members must possess relevant knowledge, experience, skills or qualifications to the functions of the new Council, including specific skill areas relevant to your members as set out in section 14 of the new Act.

Nominations close on 3 May 2019 and more information can be founds here.

RBA chart pack

The RBA has released an updated ‘chart pack’ that summarises macroeconomic and financial market trends in Australia and provides some information about developments for our main trading partners.  The pack includes useful graphs on a range of topics including households, business, commodity prices, economic growth and more.

Find out more here

The latest data from ABS released

According to the latest data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) WA retail turnover increased 2.0% in February from the same time in 2018 to sit at $2.54 billion, forming a 10.6% share of total Australian retail turnover for the month.

In terms of building approvals, in WA the number of building approvals for houses lifted 9.0% from the month prior to sit at 933, 10.1% lower than at the same time last year. Approvals for WA dwellings (excluding houses) fell 21.5% month-on-month (MoM) to 328, following a tripling of figures in January, and more than doubled on a year-on-year (YoY) basis.

The value of new total WA residential building jobs increased 7.7% MoM in February to $424.2 million, and also rose 9.9% from the corresponding month in the year prior.

Included within this total: building jobs for new construction lifted 8.4% MoM and 13.5% YoY to $377.4 million; and the value of building jobs for alterations and additions (including conversions) increased 1.9% MoM to $46.9 million, but fell 12.4% YoY.

The value of new WA building jobs for private sector houses increased 3.9% MoM to $258.2 million, 10% below values at the same time last year. The value of other residential (excluding houses) private sector building jobs lifted 23.9% MoM to sit at $113.4 million, and tripled from levels recorded in February 2018.