Property Market Response to Victorian Govt COVID Roadmap

In BICSI Blog, BICSI Bytes, Featured, Newsby

The Victorian branch of the Property Council of Australia recently welcomed the Victorian Government’s roadmap for the safe reopening of the property industry and commends Government, Industry, and the Unions on their collaboration in developing the sector plan.

The Property Council acknowledged that lifting restrictions is a balancing act and all stakeholders must remain vigilant about safe reopening at every stage of the roadmap.

The detailed roadmap set out phased-limits for the numbers of workers allowed on site under four public-health scenarios:

  • Closed;
  • the current ‘heavily restricted’ setting;
  • the next ‘restricted’ phase; and
  • a return to ‘COVID normal’ with COVIDsafe plans in place.

Under the roadmap, large-scale construction sites may be able to return to 85% workforce capacity as early as 28 September. The Property Council is working closely with the Government on refining practices and guidance on display suites and real estate transactions and how to safely and productively move forward in these areas in the coming week.

With an outline for recovery now in place, the Property Council continued to urge the Government to bring forward its desperately needed industry stimulus package. Since it takes months for construction and real estate businesses to access government relief schemes. planned stimulus measures need to be brought forward as soon as possible.

Recent estimates suggest that the Victorian economy is losing AU$300-400 million per day during the Stage 4 lockdown. The Property Council stimulus plan, released in June, outlined a series of measures that could see $24.4 billion worth of economic activity injected into the economy.

Measures proposed include:

  • A housing construction economic kickstart;
  • Catalyse projects to accelerate growth;
  • Automatically extend all current unexpired development permits for, at least, two years;
  • Resetting the housing affordability equation for Australians;
  • Tax settings to drive productivity;
  • Remove the brakes on development activity;
  • Supercharge planning to support Victorians’ new way of life; and
  • Downsizer grants to support older Victorians.