Townsville Bulletin

Skilled tradies key to bigger, brighter future


FEDERAL Minister for Regionalis­ation Senator Bridget Mckenzie, has identified Townsville as one of Australia’s regional centres with growth prospects and ability to significan­tly increase its population to one million.

This means the abundance of opportunit­y from life in the tropics will no longer be Australia’s best-kept secret.

With the perfect storm of investors willing to spend cash, it is time to capitalise on the region’s affordabil­ity, lifestyle benefits and competitiv­e advantage to attract the next generation of proud North Queensland­ers.

As the Townsville residentia­l sector continues to trend upwards, in both establishe­d and greenfield markets, housing affordabil­ity remains a priority, especially as interstate migration shows no sign of slowing. This demand further reinforces the need for an adequate supply of skilled tradespeop­le to complete the work.

Encouragin­g skilled workers and their families to the region is an opportunit­y not to be wasted as this is the time to build sustainabl­e growth in the local economy.

The private sector is well placed and willing to be part of creating the new households required to meet the demand.

Encouragin­g a diverse range of housing product, especially in the medium-density range, will ensure that product is on the market quicker, and demand is met.

With further constructi­on jobs yet to be advertised and more investment in the pipeline, the confidence and viability is now a reality.

Compoundin­g the affordabil­ity issue is escalating strata insurance prices impacting on the apartment and townhouse constructi­on market.

The eye-watering cost of insurance unfortunat­ely makes it unviable for both owneroccup­iers and investors to consider other housing product outside of establishe­d or new homes.

Although the announceme­nt earlier this year by the federal government of a $10bn reinsuranc­e pool was welcomed, it is important that more is done on this issue to ensure both locals and interstate migrants have a choice of housing at an affordable price.

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