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The government’s challenge

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Is to build another 10,000 houses. It’s easy to say, but is it possible? Especially when you consider that the GDP of the property industry has already doubled to $30 billion over the last ten years - and most of that growth came in the last five following the flat line impact of the GFC. So really, how much more is left in the tank? Are there any easy wins left? But first, let’s consider the health of the industry and the symptoms don’t look great. It cannot be acceptable that councils are declining more than one-third of building consents because they have issues with the quality of both workmanship and the information being provided to them. Yes, these local body’s are risk-averse, but given recent history, they are right to be so. Yet, even with the brake, the high rate of non-approvals applies to construction, those projects that do get the green light face significant delays at every stage of the process (including design, consenting, sourcing materials, manufacturing and delivery). It is inarguable that the reliability of our skilled tradies on site is now under question as the workload stretches them to breaking point. In short, our patient is wobbling and is in danger of a fall. The result is increasing inefficiencies and significantly higher construction costs, especially when compared to our nearest neighbour, Australia. It’s there for all to see, so what has been the industry response? It’s trying to hire its way out of trouble. If nothing…

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