‘Buy­ers drop­ping off’

Build­ing in­dus­try fal­ters af­ter grant axed

The Gympie Times - - NEWS -

THE loss of a $5000 boost to the First Home Own­ers grant has been called a ma­jor blow to Gympie’s con­struc­tion in­dus­try, with one builder say­ing with­out it peo­ple are rent­ing in­stead.

Ho­tondo Homes owner Chris Dodt said the $5000 boost to the First Home Own­ers Grant, which took it to $20,000, had been mak­ing a “huge dif­fer­ence” for his busi­ness.

How­ever, it ended in June. Mr Dodt said there was a lot of ac­tiv­ity in Gympie with new fam­i­lies mov­ing to the area be­cause of land prices and the cost of liv­ing.

“The First Home Own­ers Grant gives them con­fi­dence to move ahead with their build­ing plans.

“It is a wel­come bonus which can make the dif­fer­ence be­tween build­ing or rent­ing,” he said.

He said with­out the $5000 boost to the grant, buy­ers were no­tice­ably drop­ping off.

“We have had a re­duc­tion in first home own­ers since the $5000 boost has been can­celled. The banks are get­ting tougher to deal with and peo­ple are choos­ing to keep rent­ing, in­stead of build­ing their own homes.

“If the $5000 boost was re­in­stated I think we would see a lot more young peo­ple in­ter­ested in build­ing their first home.

“The ex­tra $5000 re­ally does make a huge dif­fer­ence.”

“Gympie has al­ways been a more eco­nom­i­cal area to live com­pared to the coast and Bris­bane.

“But younger peo­ple find the cost and thought of build­ing their first home a bit daunt­ing and they are scared to take the ini­tial step to­wards build­ing.”

The change in for­tune for re­gional areas has prompted Mas­ter Builders to call on the State to bring the boost back.

Mas­ter Builders deputy CEO Paul Bid­well said the Gov­ern­ment was cur­rently de­cid­ing how to spend the min­ing roy­al­ties wind­fall, mean­ing now was the per­fect time to bring back the boost.

“Bring­ing back the boost to re­gional Queens­land gives first home buy­ers fur­ther as­sis­tance to en­ter the hous­ing mar­ket.

“It acts as a pre-emp­tive mea­sure to en­sure build­ing ac­tiv­ity in re­gional Queens­land doesn’t suf­fer fur­ther,” Mr Bid­well said.

“Build­ing new homes builds com­mu­ni­ties, cre­ates jobs and de­liv­ers eco­nomic growth where it’s needed most.

“When you cham­pion the build­ing and con­struc­tion in­dus­try, ev­ery­one gets a help­ing hand; from your lo­cal cof­fee shop to hard­ware stores.”

Photo: Troy Jegers

IN NEED OF A BOOST: Chris Dodt and Will Wil­son want the State Gov­ern­ment to bring back the $5000 First Home Own­ers boost back, say­ing with­out it the re­gion’s con­struc­tion in­dus­try is fal­ter­ing.

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