Housing Industry Association area manager Russell Parnicott (left) Esprit Constructions owner Peter McGrath and Travis Norton check progress at a Kerrisdale Estate building site at the weekend.
Housing Industry Association area manager Russell Parnicott (left) Esprit Constructions owner Peter McGrath and Travis Norton check progress at a Kerrisdale Estate building site at the weekend. Peter Holt

Industry keen to build on interest

BUILDING a new home will be $10,000 easier with the introduction of a new State Government grant that comes into effect today as part of the $140 million, six-month Queensland Building Boost.

Increased activity in the building industry is what Housing Industry Association area manager Russell Parnicott hopes the cash injection will achieve.

“Our builders have noticed even prior to (today) a lot more interest,” Mr Parnicott said.

“A lot of blocks of land have been sold.”

Former professional rugby league player Travis Norton is one of those taking advantage of the grant.

Esprit Constructions owner and director Peter McGrath said Mr Norton had planned to build and the grant had pushed him into doing it.

“We are also seeing some first homeowners back in the market,” Mr McGrath said.

The benefits were nearly doubled for young couples starting off with their first new home because they could utilise both this grant and the existing $7000 first home owners grant, Mr Parnicott said.

“What they can do is sort of like a double dip.”

Mr Parnicott said the only thing stopping young buyers was the banks.

“Banks have tightened up over the last couple of years,” he said.

“Young couples have to (be able) to show a record of saving money.”

Investors will also benefit from the building boost as they can build up to five new homes and receive the grant for each.

“For an investor, it’s not just a house, it’s a unit or a townhouse as well,” Mr Parnicott said.

The government’s plan to fire up the building industry is working, from Mr McGrath’s point of view.

“It’s certainly brought interested parties out of the woodwork,” Mr McGrath said.

“We’ll see a surge in activity.”

Mr Parnicott said he hoped the six-month period, which ends on January 31, 2012, would be extended.

“Or I hope builders can get some more land and get enough houses built in that time,” he said.

Stamp duty impact

WHILE the $10,000 State Government grant may seem like a dream, it comes at a price as concessions on stamp duty are removed.

“The grant may encourage new building starts; the building industry needs a bit of a hand there,” Des Besanko, the owner of LJ Hooker Mackay, LJ Hooker Mackay Beaches and LJ Hookers Moranbah, said.

“At the same time, they've taken away the stamp duty savings that people have enjoyed for many years.”

Mr Besanko estimated the average increase to be about $4000 to $5000.

“People are going to have to come up with more upfront money,” he said.

Esprit Constructions owner and director Peter McGrath said supply and demand might also come into play in terms of land availability over the next six months and he expressed concerns there wouldn't be enough land to meet the demand.

“That's a nightmare from an organisation point of view. People will be waiting to build on subdivisions but the land won't be registered. I can see that happening,” he said.

 

Queensland Building Boost

  • The grant will be available to anyone buying or building a new home up to the value of $600,000
  • The grant is open from today until January 31, 2012
  • For information visit www.qld.gov.au/boost

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