A $10,000 grant to new home buyers will bolster housing affordability across the community and provide a critical stimulus to the Queensland property industry, according to the Property Council of Australia.
The Property Council commended the Treasurer for today’s budget which introduces key initiatives to help attract investment to the State and restore Queensland’s competitiveness.
Queensland Executive Director of the Property Council of Australia Kathy Mac Dermott said the ‘Queensland Building Boost’ recognised the urgent need to address housing affordability and was an excellent initiative for the community.
“The grant will allow thousands of families to access a new home,” Ms Mac Dermott said.
“It will also protect jobs in the housing development sector throughout the state.
“The ability for people to receive the $10,000 grant for any new house or apartment priced up to $600,000, bought or contracted between 1 August and 31 January 2012 will deliver strong social and economic benefits to Queensland.
“The Boost is one of a series of Budget initiatives which will help restore Queensland’s appeal to investors.
“In particular, the State Government’s commitment to create a Major Projects Office sends a powerful message to investors that Queensland is back in business.
“The Property Council has been strongly advocating for the urgent establishment of a Major Projects Office (MPO) to unlock billions of dollars of shovel-ready, significant developments currently stymied by a quagmire of planning and development assessment processes,” Ms Mac Dermott said.
“The MPO will help attract investment in significant retail, office and industrial developments in Queensland and create jobs.”
The Property Council also welcomed the allocation of funds to investigate the establishment of an alternate dispute resolution mechanism for development assessment processes.
“Too often applicants are forced to pursue dispute resolution through the Planning and Environment Court, the cost of which is prohibitive for many people, and ultimately adds to the cost of development.
“An alternate mechanism providing cheaper and faster dispute resolution will vastly improve the viability of development and will help improve housing affordability in Queensland.”
The Property Council commended the Government for providing funding of up to $2 million to the fund the Council of Mayors Development Assessment Process Reform Program which will help reduce holding costs of large residential developments, provide greater certainty to developers and improve the operational works process through a range of self and private certification approaches.
“This Program will deliver outcomes which will further enhance housing affordability.
“We also welcome the Government’s abolition of the Community Ambulance Levy as this will reduce household and property costs.”
Ms Mac Dermott said: “Today’s Budget recognised that to rebuild Queensland’s economy, we need to restore the state’s competitiveness and investor confidence.
“The property industry is the State's largest employer and the largest private sector contributor to Queensland’s economy and this Budget will stimulate investment across the sector.”