UDIA committees commence

The 2018-19 UDIA Standing Committees kicked off their first round of meetings this week with the Environment, Land Use Planning, Infrastructure and Outlook Committees all convening.  Each committee is determining their strategic priorities for the year ahead and addressing the industry issues relevant to their scope.

You can view the full committee lists, including scope and membership here.

If you have any queries or potential agenda items for the UDIA Standing committees, please email them to policy@udiawa.com.au

Perth and Peel update

UDIA CEO Allison Hailes and President Nick Allingame met with the Chairman of the WAPC Eric Lumsden on Tuesday to discuss the recent finalisation of the Perth and Peel @ 3.5 Million Sub Regional Frameworks.  Eric advised that the Department of Planning is currently working on an implementation plan for the frameworks.  There is also a Staging Plan for Infrastructure available online.

It was also advised that Local Governments have been provided with timeframes of between two and five years to get their town planning schemes in line with the frameworks.

UDIA is establishing a subcommittee of members to review the adopted frameworks and make an assessment of the implications for industry.  Please stay tuned.

Land Report – opportunities

UDIA is once again partnering with The West Australian to deliver the bi-annual Land Report lift out.  The special will feature in both The Weekend West and The Sunday Times on the 19th and 20th May 2018.

The lift out provides a fantastic opportunity for our members to advertise directly to land buyers and new home builders.  Featuring exclusive land sales data from UDIA as well as a range of market commentary and stories directly relevant to readers considering making a purchase, this is an opportunity not to be missed!

See more details here.

Micro Lots – your chance to comment

UDIA is seeking feedback from members to inform our formal submission on the state government’s draft Position Statement for Housing on Lots less than 100m2.

Please send your feedback to policy@udiawa.com.au by 7 May, 2018. To view the document please click here.

House prices up and interest rates remain low

The latest data from the CoreLogic hedonic home value index confirms Perth’s housing values crept up 0.3% for the last month with the median value sitting at $464,736. This figure provides more evidence of a slow market recovery in Western Australia that is likely to be aided by Tuesday’s decision to keep the official cash rate on hold at 1.5 per cent.

The Reserve Bank Governor Philip Lowe stated that the historically low level of interest rates is continuing to support the Australian economy. He also noted that the housing markets have slowed in Melbourne and Sydney as APRA’s supervisory measures and tighter credit standards continue to take effect.  The full RBA statement is available here.

Karratha airport flights

Domestic flights between Karratha and Brisbane, to be run by Queensland regional airline JetGo, are scheduled to start on June 25 this year, running twice weekly. JetGo flights linking Karratha to its first international destination, Singapore, are due to start in September this year. The move could pose business opportunities across a wide range of sectors, including in tourism, transport, retail, catering and imports and exports.

Latest dwelling approvals data released

The trend estimate for total number of dwelling units approved in Western Australia fell 4.4% in February and has fallen for five months. The trend estimate for the number of private sector houses fell 0.5% in February and has fallen for nine months.  This result is representative of the slowing in supply due to the market downturn over the last few years.  We expect to see improvement in these figures during the year. More detailed information here.

Fremantle Diversity policy

The City of Fremantle has recently voted to change their Local Planning Scheme and adopt a new planning policy that they say will stimulate development of a wider choice of housing in Fremantle’s suburban areas.

The proposed planning scheme amendment and associated policy, called the ‘Freo Alternative – Big Thinking about Small Housing’ will be sent to the Minister for Planning for final determination. The proposed amendment establishes seven special control areas throughout the suburbs with special provisions for small infill development, as an alternative to traditional single lot subdivision.

While UDIA applauds the City’s aim to promote housing diversity, UDIA strongly believes that policies to address the delivery of greater housing diversity should be led by the State Government, so that we don’t get inconsistencies across local government areas due to individual rules and requirements.

We also believe it is important to be mindful not to introduce policies that could further land fragmentation, which ultimately prohibits larger redevelopment opportunities that could use lands more efficiently and deliver better social and environmental outcomes.

Visit here for more details on the proposed policy.

The DWER Index of Biodiversity Surveys for Assessments

The Index of Biodiversity Surveys for Assessments is a new project by the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation which will collect biodiversity data from land-based biodiversity field surveys that support EP Act assessments; consolidate the data; and provide a publicly available platform for access. The aim of the project is to deliver better environmental outcome and assessment efficiency for proponents. Basic information for each dataset will be made available online following the use of it for assessment purposes, however the owners of the data will control how accessible the complete datasets are. The initiative will apply to everyone conducting land-based biodiversity assessments and compliance under Parts IV and V of the EP Act, requiring the submission of data as part of these processes, and will come into effect on 30 April, 2018. A transition period will apply. An information document will be released in mid-April and familiarisation sessions will also be held in late April. Further information is available in the information sheet here (insert a link to the information sheet attached) and interested parties can register for updates here.

UDIA will liaise with the Department and update members in due course as further information becomes available.

Private rental in transition: institutional change, technology and innovation in Australia

According to recent research by the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI), the Australian private rental sector (PRS) increased by 38 per cent over 10 years (2006–16), more than twice the rate of household growth. In fact, 2.1 million Australian households lived in the private rental sector (PRS) in 2016 or 26 per cent of all households.

According to AHURI’s inquiry, the PRS is the fastest growing part of the Australian housing system. The PRS is no longer a transitional sector for younger people between leaving the family home and becoming home owners. There are now more private renters on lower and higher incomes, more households with children; more households renting at mid-life, and more long-term renters (10+ years).

This report presents an institutional analysis of the PRS, which explores the interplay between regulation, organisations and structures and social norms and practices in the context of prevailing policies on the PRS.

Full report here.

Ocean Reef Marina agreement

A new agreement between LandCorp, and the City of Joondalup has set the framework for the development of the new Ocean Reef Marina precinct in Perth’s north. The development, with a planned 550 boat pens, more than 200 boat stackers, an expected 1,000 houses and apartments, and 12,000 square metres of retail and commercial space, will create a new hub of recreational amenity, living opportunities and tourism in the northern corridor.

Ultimately, the project is expected to attract private sector funding totalling more than $500 million. Construction is expected to begin on the new marina in 2020.

Professional Development Program – first module commences April 23

This comprehensive program is tailored directly to those working in the property industry in WA and ensures participants gain a practical understanding of the tools needed to navigate through complex development processes and the different roles within a project team.

Join our experienced presenters Marie Mills, from Mills Wilson; Stephen Carter, from CLE Town Planning + Design; and Lavan’s Brian McMurdo and Brendan Foley, for the first module, Basic Skills and the Planning Framework, on April 23. More information can be found in the program brochure here, and please contact Carissa at cgautam@udiawa.com.au for program queries. Registrations for Module 1 close April 16, don’t miss out.