IT’S created a fair bit of interest, if not actual new home starts, but the $25,000 on offer through the Australian Government’s HomeBuilder scheme is at least a positive for the industry.
Housing Industry Association Chief Economist Tim Reardon says new home data shows the grant opportunity has provided a level of optimism and a corresponding boost to jobs.
“With two months of data since the introduction of the HomeBuilder scheme it is increasingly clear that grant has arrested the decline in new home sales and will protect jobs in the sector into 2021,” Mr Reardon said.
“Housing data has been ricocheting through the COVID-19 period.
“New home sales are highly reactive to changes in consumer confidence and collapsed in the three months to May 2020. The announcement of HomeBuilder, together with the initial easing of restrictions across most jurisdictions, has seen confidence in the market improve.
“In the two months since June, new home sales have increased to be 64.4 per cent higher than the preceding two months.”
But that figure is Australia-wide and it’s likely the reintroduction of restrictions in Victoria will have had an impact.
Locally, Gary Sauvarin of Considine and Johnston in Leongatha says the $25,000 grant has at least created interest and would hopefully be taken up by those already well advanced with their project.
“The scheme runs through to December, so you’d probably have to be well into the planning stages to take advantage.
“But it definitely a positive.
“Locally, the tradies are reasonably busy, a lot involved in renovations as people spend time at home and decide to spend their holiday money on home improvements.
“We see new starts pick up in October, but to date there’s been nothing out of the ordinary.”
The HomeBuilder grant provides eligible owner-occupiers (including first home buyers) with a grant of $25,000 to build a new home or substantially renovate an existing home. Applications are open at https://www.firsthome.gov.au/homebuilder/vic/