UDIA National State of the Land report released

UDIA National launched the 10th annual State of the Land Report at our National Congress in Melbourne this morning.  The report provides a clear picture of how different the markets on the east coast vs here in WA truly are.  While Sydney and Melbourne continue to experience high demand and face serious land supply constraints, the Perth market has bottomed out with positive expectations for growth moving forward.

For the first time this year, the report includes a comprehensive rundown on both the greenfield and multi-unit markets.

In brief, the Perth figures show that, while the number of lots sold per month during 2017 was down 2.2% on the previous year, the rate of decline has slowed, stabilising from the massive 49% drop experienced between 2014 and 2015. The average price of new land in Perth is also down 1% to $227,000 this year, but again, prices are performing much better than the significant falls experienced in previous years.

Despite the different market conditions, the key message with regard to rising affordability pressures are common across the board. Deteriorating housing affordability continues to present a wicked public policy issue for government while also presenting a major challenge for the development industry.

The full report is available here.

UDIA WA’s media release focusing on Perth results can be found here.

UDIA National Executive Director appointed

UDIA National has welcomed the appointment of Kirk Coningham OAM as National Executive Director.

Mr Coningham comes with extensive experience in the development and construction sector. Most recently Kirk was Executive Director of Master Builders ACT. Before that he was a senior executive reporting directly to the global head of the Leighton Group.

His earlier career includes leadership roles with the Australian Federal Police, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, including a posting to Indonesia as a senior diplomat, and with the Australian Army where he saw active service as a Captain.

Latest Urban Intelligence available

The February 2017 UDIA Urban Intelligence report was released to members on Tuesday.  The figures in this month’s report continue to reflect the economic downturn that has gripped WA for the last few years, however there is a positive outlook forecast.

The full report can be downloaded here.

UDIA Congress news

The UDIA National Congress kicked off in Melbourne on Tuesday with a keynote presentation from former Federal Treasurer, Peter Costello AC, who hit the headlines due to his warning that rates will rise from their historically low levels.  He predicts some pain for home owners due to the rise along with the high level of household debt in Australia.

Overall, WA delegates have been enjoying the professional development and networking opportunities offered at Congress, as well as a chance to view some fantastic new development in and around Melbourne during the site tours.

The congress will close tonight with the pinnacle of the urban development industry calendar, the National Awards for Excellence.  We wish all entrants the best of luck and we will communicate the winners tomorrow.

We have also been keeping members up to date on Congress activities via our social media channels so feel free to follow us there for all the action!

Micro Lots feedback

Following the release of the draft position statement on micro lots at our breakfast event last Wednesday, there has been significant media attention around the emergence of lots under 100m² in WA.  Amidst the excitement, the statement is out for public comment and if you would like to contribute to UDIA’s submission on behalf of industry, please forward comments by Monday 7th May to policy@udiawa.com.au.

Visit here for more information on the position statement.

Residential Design Codes updated

The updated version of State Planning Policy 3.1: Residential Design Codes has been released.  The R-Codes control the design of most residential development throughout Western Australia.

The updated version is available here.

Seeking feedback

The following documents are out for comment.  If any members would like to provide feedback or have concerns regarding these items please contact the UDIA Policy and Research team at: policy@udiawa.com.au

  • Metropolitan Region Scheme Major Amendment 1313/41 – Midland Freight Rail Realignment – submissions close Friday 22 June 2018. More information here
  • Metropolitan Region Scheme – Major Amendment 1332/41 – Swan Valley Omnibus 1 – submissions close Friday 22 June 2018. More information here
  • Discussion paper – Controlled Waste Review – submissions close 8 June 2018. More information here
  • Draft Odour guideline for prescribed premises – submissions close 19 April 2018.  More information here
  • Interim Report of the State Industrial Relations system open for comment – Submissions close Tuesday 17 April. More information here

More positive housing figures released

Residential property prices rose 5.0 per cent across Australia through the year to December quarter 2017 according to the latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics. The total value of Australia’s 10 million residential dwellings increased $92.9 billion to $6.9 trillion. The mean price of dwellings in Australia is now $686,700.

Looking at the state by state breakdown, the capital city residential property price indexes rose in Melbourne (+2.6%), Perth (+1.1%), Brisbane (+0.9%), Hobart (+3.9%), Canberra (+1.7%) and Adelaide (+0.6%) and fell in Sydney (-0.1%) and Darwin (-1.5%).

Other figures released today show that WA’s population growth has increased marginally to 0.9 per cent for the 12 months to September 2017.  The state’s unemployment rate is up 0.2 per cent in February to sit at 6 per cent seasonally adjusted.

Full reports here

Infrastructure Australia assessment framework

Infrastructure Australia has released an assessment framework that provides guidance for initiatives and projects to be included in the Infrastructure Priority List (IPL). The IPL is the list of Initiatives and Projects which have been identified by Infrastructure Australia as potential infrastructure solutions to address nationally significant infrastructure problems and opportunities.

The Assessment Framework facilitates evidence based development of infrastructure projects. The information contained in the document is essential for proponents looking to progress projects through the Infrastructure Australia assessment stages.

Download the framework here

World Water Day – today!

Today is World Water Day and it is an annual day to focus attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources.  On this theme, the CRC WSC recently released an industry note on the most cost-effective ways to maintain public open space with less water, using the City of Nedlands as the case study.  The cost-effectiveness of six water saving techniques in terms of kilolitres of water saved per dollar spent, over the lifespan of the technique were tested.  The cost of the water saved from the various techniques ranges from $0.27/kl to $13.49/kl.  The research found that the average cost of a 10% reduction in water use was $0.43/kl versus business as usual irrigation with scheme water at $2.09/kl.

More information here

Mirvac receives funding for clean energy

The Clean Energy Finance Corporation will lend $90 million to Mirvac for rooftop solar panels and battery storage at three new house and land estates across Sydney and Brisbane.

Mirvac is working with the CEFC to embed a range of clean energy initiatives that will see the communities of more than 300 family homes each equipped with built-in solar and battery storage systems, as well as high-grade insulation, LED lighting and energy efficient appliances.

More information here

Scarborough Foreshore opens to public

The new Scarborough Beach foreshore opened to the public on Sunday 18 March, featuring international skate facilities, play space and public amenities. The $100 million development features the new Transit Hub, Scarborough Beach Pool, Sunset Hill and changes to parking and roads to make the area more pedestrian friendly, and improve connections between foreshore businesses and the ocean. Planning Minister Rita Saffioti says investment by the State Government and City of Stirling has transitioned Scarborough into a more contemporary beach destination, creating a strong foundation for future investment and development by the private sector.

Action plan to grow tourism

In recent weeks UDIA has been discussing the merits of revisiting ‘brand Perth’ and the importance of Perth having a clear identity in order to attract both tourists and people moving to the state.  This will boost the economy and provide more focus for future development of the city.

On this topic, the state government launched a plan yesterday, to grow the number of visitors to the State over the next two years. The plan focuses on four key areas that will help drive visitation, including positioning the State as Australia’s western gateway; changing perceptions of Perth and reigniting the east coast market; attracting more people, more often to regional WA; and intensifying promotional activity in target markets to encourage travel.

The full plan is available here

Land Report – coming soon!

The biannual UDIA Land Report Lift out is scheduled for publication in The West Australian on Saturday 19 May 2018 and The Sunday Times on 20 May.  The lift out will feature fresh data from UDIA’s urban development index for the most recent quarter as well as a range of stories to assist buyers in their land purchase decision making and provide insight into the market.  Advertising opportunities will be released soon. Watch this space!