DIY boom as rates drop
QUEENSLANDERS have become so enthusiastic about renovating their homes that it has created a boom, with more than 57,000 renovations alone during the 2014- 15 financial year, according to Master Builders Queensland deputy executive director Paul Bidwell.
“When you think about it, now is a great time to renovate or build because of the record low interest rates,” he said.
“There is a general feeling of improved consumer confidence, reasonable economic growth and ongoing population growth, which all play a part in setting the scene for a positive building environment in southeast Queensland.”
Mr Bidwell said the average renovator spent $ 33,000 on doing up their home last financial year and overall, renovations had been trending up, with an increase of more than 5000 renovations since 2014-15.
He said the average cost of projects had remained fairly stable, with the average value hovering around the $30,000 range since 2009.
He said people looking for a carpenter, tiler, bricklayer or concreter had best book one far in advance as these were the most in-demand trades, according to the latest Master Builders Survey of Industry Conditions for the September 2015 quarter.
The survey also found builders expected the current trend for more units to continue, with three-quarters expecting to see relatively more units than detached houses.
“While the majority expect both detached houses and units to be smaller, there will be segments of the market that will see demand for larger versions of both dwelling types,” he said.
“Land size is expected to continue to get smaller. And it is expected that there will be a growth in infill housing rather than greenfield development, with a shift to higher density.”
With homeowners f requently citing a lack of infor- mation about the building process as a major stress factor and trigger for disputes and miscommunication, Mr Bidwell said Master Builders has information about the building process designed to arm consumers with the knowledge they needed to better navigate the home building process.
“Our website includes information on issues like choosing l and, building your dream home, finding a Master Builder, contracts and variations, deposits and progress payments, building approvals and inspections, the construction phase and what to do before you move in,” he said.
“The information will give you a more thorough understanding of the building process and help you to improve communication with your builder.
“You’ll also then know what to expect throughout the various stages of building, which can assist in reducing stress and pave the way to a smoother and happier build.
He said those searching for inspiration should visit a Master Builders display village, where they could see the latest housing designs, trends and products on offer.