In the News
New laws to give Canberra village residents more say
Aged Care 101, 24 February 2017
Residents in the ACT’s 30-plus villages will now be able to approve any fee increases – and manage disputes more easily – thanks to the new Retirement Villages Amendment Act 2016. Designed to benefit both residents and operators, the changes follow a review into the current Act that included the Property Council, ACT Retirement Village Residents Association and COTA. Read here.
Australia's office tower vacancy still a concern but future supply low
Australian Financial Review, 2 February 2017
Debate has begun as to whether Australia needs more new office towers as vacancy in cities such as Perth have reached record highs, but expected new supply over the next three years will be just half that constructed in the past 18 months. The latest data on office tower space in Australia from the Property Council shows 10.9 per cent of the country's office space is empty with Adelaide, Perth, Brisbane and Darwin all at multi-year highs. [Pay wall] Read here.
Office market: Building slowdown to cut CBD office supply
The Australian, 2 February 2017
Australia’s CBDs will see a substantial fall in the amount of new office space, with development halving over the next three years, according to a Property Council of Australia report. [Pay wall] Read here.
National office vacancy inches ahead with new developments
Sydney Morning Herald, 2 February 2017
National office markets saw an average marginal lift in vacancy rates as new properties opened the doors, but the rate of growth is very small and predictions are that demand will again outstrip supply in the year ahead. Read here.
Are councils to blame for rising house prices?
2GB, 31 January 2017
Jane Fitzgerald, NSW Executive Director of the Property Council of Australia joins Chris Smith to discuss the very controversial role of councils on local development. Listen here.
Commercial property experts watching this space
Herald Sun, 31 January 2017
The outlook for commercial property this year is largely upbeat with most experts expecting a build-up of demand late last year to continue, despite some warning of potential headwinds dampening investment. Read here.
11 ways to make housing more affordable
Australian Financial Review, 27 January 2017
No one solution will solve the housing affordability problem. Experts favour utilising the tax system over tampering with supply. Ultimately every available policy will be needed to reign in soaring prices, or politicians will face an increasingly hostile electorate. Our reporters asked industry experts for their solutions to the growing crisis. [Pay wall] Read here.
Property Council: 3 priorities for a strong NSW
Real Estate Business, 25 January 2017
Property Council NSW executive director Jane Fitzgerald says addressing housing affordability by “turbo charging” supply must be a top priority. “We need at least 725,000 houses by 2036 and we won’t reach this figure unless we unlock more land and reform the planning system,” Ms Fitzgerald said. Read here.
New data shows banking regulator's attempts to cap property lending backfired: economists
ABC News Radio, 23 January 2017
The latest official data shows that in trend terms, housing finance for owner-occupiers flat-lined late last year, while loans to investors rose. Interview with Gladys Berejiklian, NSW Premier; Shane Oliver, AMP, chief economist; and Ken Morrison, Property Council of Australia, chief executive. Listen here.
Property Council: Environmental Planning & Assessment Act a good start but not quite enough
The Urban Developer, 9 January 2017
The proposed amendments to the EP&A Act will improve the NSW planning system so that better strategic planning objectives are achieved and more houses can be built,” Ms Fitzgerald said. However, Ms Fitzgerald said that it is a good start but not enough. “The NSW system needs radical surgery, not a nip and a tuck,” she said. Read here.
NSW and Sydney proposed planning changes provoke mixed reaction
Canberra Times, 9 January 2017
Jane Fitzgerald, the NSW executive director of the Property Council, said the changes looked "sensible and logical" but also represented a missed opportunity to implement more substantial reform. Ms Fitzgerald said the government should have tried to revive so-called code-assessable development, under which developers can more easily progress potentially large projects provided they are in line with previously agreed codes. Read here.
When global architects come to town
The Fifth Estate, 8 December 2016
A bevy of global architects converged in Sydney this week. One lot was Richard Rogers and Ivan Harbour from Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners in town to check on the almost complete Barangaroo towers the pair’s firm had designed, and to address the NSW Property Council’s Breakfast with the Architects event on Wednesday morning in Tower 3 of the project. Read here.
What Infrastructure Victoria's 30-year plan for the city looks like
The Daily Telegraph, 8 December 2016
Infrastructure Victoria today released its $100 billion, 30-year blueprint for the state and declared road pricing was the best way to reduce congestion. Property Council Victorian executive director Sally Capp backed road pricing to ease congestion, which costs the state $4.6 billion every year, even though it would “not be easy or popular to implement”. Read here.
Cashed-up empty nesters caught without nest
Australian Financial Review, 8 December 2016
Empty nesters are leaping at soaring prices offered for their family homes but often crash-landing when they cannot find a replacement they can afford that matches their lifestyle. According to the Property Council's Retirement Living Council, Australia's population of 3.2 million over-65s is expected to reach more than 8 million by 2050. By 2025, demand for retirement living accommodation is forecast to double and will not be met by existing or proposed facilities. [Pay wall] Read here.
The megatrends that will rock the property industry
The Fifth Estate, 7 December 2016
New research by EY, in conjunction with the Green Building Council of Australia and Property Council of Australia, hopes to shake the property industry from its slumber on the inevitable disruption that will transform the sector. Property Council chief executive Ken Morrison welcomed the report and encouraged the industry to consider its findings. “As consumers, this transformation is making our lives easier, but for businesses who don’t prepare for change, it can be traumatic,” Mr Morrison said. Read here.
Big plans for 2017
Townsville Bulletin, 7 December 2016
Opinion: "With an accountable and empowered authority driving progress, 2017 could be the year that Townsville unlocks the vision of world-class cultural, entertainment, tourism, residential and sporting facilities that will revitalise the city’s waterfront and attract investment into our CBD," writes Property Council's Queensland executive director Chris Mountford. Read here.
Chief Minister Michael Gunner highlights Labor achievements after 100 days in office
NT News, 5 December 2016
Chief Minister Michael Gunner marked 100 days in office by telling a group of 250 at the NT Property Council of Australia forum in Darwin that there was “much to be excited about” despite the bleak economic horizon. Read here.
Robots, drones to shake up property sector
The Australian, 5 December 2016
While real estate has been relatively immune to the rapid pace of change, the sector may be underestimating the impact of emerging technologies, according to research undertaken by EY in association with the Property Council and Green Building Council. Property Council chief executive Ken Morrison warned against complacency. Read here.
New financing plan to relieve public housing costs
Australian Financial Review, 1 December 2016
The Property Council of Australia called for more land release, better planning laws, for state governments to wind back stamp duty, and for competition style payments that can provide the state, territories and local government with the incentives to undertake planning reform. Read here.
ABCC to cut costs and corruption, says business
The Australian, 1 December 2016
Business leaders are confident the Australian Building and Construction Commission will help the industry become more productive and reduce the risk of cost blowouts on major projects prompted by the growing rate of strikes. [Pay wall] Read here.
Building approvals lowest in two years
The Australian, 1 December 2016
Overall residential construction approvals fell to $5.23 billion, the lowest level in two years. Property Council chief of policy and housing Glenn Byres said the data should be a wake-up call. “The lowest housing approvals for two years are a bad sign for affordability, supply pipelines and economic activity,” he said. [Pay wall] Read here.
More Perth residents opting for high density inner city life
ABC News, 30 November 2016
The Property Council of WA has called for financial incentives to make infill developments a more affordable option for home-buyers. Executive director, Lino Iacomella said the stamp duty penalty for off-the-plan new apartments should be scrapped. Read here.
Saul Eslake: capital gains tax next in property tax debate
The Australian, 30 November 2016
Property Council chief executive Ken Morrison said the ability to deduct legitimate expenses had been part of the tax system for a century. The cost of negative gearing had fallen year on year and, with interest rates at historic lows, there was no budgetary case for change, Mr Morrison said. [Pay wall] Read here.
ABCC to 'clean up' construction industry, industrial warrior says
Australian Financial Review, 30 November 2016
Property Council of Australia chief executive Ken Morrison said when the ABCC was active, the industry group's members reported productivity improvements of between 10 and 20 per cent."The ABCC is the industrial cop on the beat that our industry needs," Mr Morrison said. Read here.
Commercial property v shares: demand to remain strong in 2017
Property Observer, 30 November 2016
Office, retail and industrial property returns have outpaced those from the stockmarket, according to a new report. The average annual return on commercial property was 12.2 percent for the September 2016 quarter according to the Property Council/IPD Australia All Property Index, with the ASX 200 a total return of 7.58 percent. Read here.
Turnbull secures passage of ABCC bill
The Real Estate Conversation, 30 November 2016
Ken Morrison, Chief Executive of the Property Council, said the passage of legislation to re-establish the ABCC is good news for the property industry. “The Australian Building and Construction Commission is a proven economic reform”, he said. Read here.
Councils zone out on Sydney's housing requirements
Real Estate Business, 30 November 2016
Conducted by JBA, Zoned out: an analysis of residential rezoning in Metropolitan Sydney looks at residential housing development proposals in 16 local government areas in the central and south-west regions of Sydney over the past four years. Property Council NSW executive director, Jane Fitzgerald, said the research underlines a worrying lack of forward thinking at a local level. Read here.
Stokes on negative gearing? Not so fast, says Property Council
The Fifth Estate, 29 November 2016
Opinion: 'Every debate needs a strawman – and in the one about housing affordability, negative gearing is the chosen target. Tim Williams is the latest to position it so. In his piece for The Fifth Estate (28 November) he praises NSW Planning Minister’s Rob Stokes for his contribution to the debate on negative gearing. Except this. He didn’t mention the few bits of modelling done on the effects on house prices from the removal of negative gearing,' writes Property Council chief of policy and housing Glenn Byres. Read here.
2016 Retirement Living Census provides detailed industry snapshot
The Real Estate Conversation, 29 November 2016
The 2016 PwC/Property Council Retirement Census, the largest annual snapshot of data and trends in the retirement living sector, has confirmed strong rates of occupancy and a continuing shift to an older resident. Read here.
'Make extending Perth's trading hours an election promise': WA's property industry
WA Today, 29 November 2016
The Property Council of Australia on Tuesday implored political parties to make reforming WA's "outdated" trading hours a key election issue. PCA WA executive director Lino Iacomella said the confusion around WA's heavily regulated retail industry had created frustration among consumers and negatively impacted retailers and businesses. Read here.
NSW Planning Minister Rob Stokes excited about Wollongong
The Illawarra Mercury, 29 November 2016
NSW Planning Minister Rob Stokes, who was the key speaker at a Property Council function in Wollongong on Tuesday, said though increasing supply would always help, it wasn’t the only solution. “While the investors have an important role to play we need to make sure that homebuyers aren’t fighting with one arm tied behind their backs and we have … strategies to allow people to get access to a place that they can own,” Mr Stokes said. Read here.
CH Smith plans praised by Tasmanian industry bodies
The Examiner, 29 November 2016
Tasmanian executive director of the Property Council of Australia Brian Wightman said for far too long the CH Smith site had been describe, at best, as an eyesore. “The reactivation of the site will provide a much needed boost to the local economy, creating jobs in the construction phase and further opportunities once completed,” he said. Read here.
Managing change in the city
The Newcastle Herald, 29 November 2016
Opinion: 'The NSW Government and the operators of Sydney Light Rail are throwing huge resources at the problem. This is the type of resourcing Newcastle deserves – on a level commensurate with the Sydney CBD light rail network construction. Speedy construction and access to information will be the keys to minimising the impact on city life,' writes Property Council's Hunter director Andrew Fletcher. Read here.
Higher taxes stifle investment in the territory
Canberra Times, 27 November 2016
Opinion: Earlier this week, the federal government released its response to Infrastructure Australia's 15-year infrastructure plan. And last week, the federal government launched a discussion paper on value capture and the role it plays in financing and funding urban infrastructure. While these are federal initiatives, they will inevitably shape and influence the way infrastructure could be funded and delivered in the ACT,' writes Property Council's Acting ACT executive director Belinda Ngo. Read here.
Property Council says housing supply targets face 'Inclusionary Zoning' risk
The Urban Developer, 22 November 2016
“If new residential development is not stimulated and encouraged to reach these new targets, meeting them will be a pipedream. It is how the plans are implemented that will be vital," said Property Council NSW executive director Jane Fitzgerald. Read here.
Adelaide is ideally suited to be the first city in Australia with a New York-style 'Central Park' skyline
The Advertiser, 21 November 2016
Opinion: 'Adelaide is ideally suited to be the first city in Australia with a New York-style Central Park skyline. Rather than build on our parklands, we need to build around them — allowing new high-rise developments along roads like Dequetteville Terrace, Hutt Street and East Terrace' writes Property Council's SA executive director Daniel Gannon. Read here.
Developers want tax breaks to make Sydney housing affordable
Australian Financial Review, 21 November 2016
Jostling over Sydney's development landscape has begun, with developers calling for the Greater Sydney Commission to offset its affordable rental housing target with greater density or tax breaks. "If it operates just as another new tax, it's not going to achieve what the Greater Sydney Commission wants it to achieve," Property Council NSW executive director Jane Fitzgerald said on Monday. [Pay wall] Read here.
Sydney's global city status at risk from outdated planning laws
The Australian, 17 November 2016
A new report from the Property Council to be released today has found that Sydney is facing increased competition from Hong Kong, Singapore, London and New York, to attract and retain new businesses and top executives. [Pay wall] Read here.
Is the federal government about to get tough on value capture?
The Fifth Estate, 16 November 2016
Making value capture a prerequisite for access to federal funds is one of the many ideas put forward in the federal government’s just-released discussion paper on value capture for funding transport infrastructure. “We welcome many of the ideas in the discussion paper … but governments need to firmly rule out new taxes under the cloak of value capture,” Property Council's chief executive Ken Morrison said. Read here.
Affordable housing plan but it's at a cost
Courier Mail, 16 November 2016
“Inclusionary zoning on private land is a clumsy public policy level to pull to try and deliver affordable housing,” Property Council Queensland executive director Chris Mountford said. “Governments that are serious about improving housing affordability across the board should be focused on two key areas – planning laws and taxation.” Read here.
Tough times hurt city shops, office
The West Australian, 16 November 2016
Tougher economic conditions were undoubtedly having an impact on CBD retailers, Property Council WA executive director Lino Iacomella said in response to an article in The West Australian claiming Perth CBD needs a revival plan. Read here.
Lang Walker's 27-story Festival Plaza office tower set to receive planning approval
The Advertiser, 8 November 2016
A DETAILED proposal for the Festival Plaza redevelopment revealing a 27-storey office tower — three storeys higher than originally pitched — is set to be approved by the state’s planning body. Property Council SA executive director Daniel Gannon has suggested relaxing height restrictions for buildings surrounding the city parklands to create a “Central Park-style skyline”. [Pay wall] Read here.
Aged housing in WA under the spotlight ahead of state election
The Fifth Estate, 8 November 2016
Property Council encourages state government on plans for the aged housing sector The Property Council WA supported the government’s announcement and urged it to do more in the sector. “The fact that the government is taking notice of the plight facing many seniors, when it comes to housing, is a big win for the retirement living sector,” Property Council WA executive director Lino Iacomella said. Read here.
Two-time Labor candidate and staffer Cirson takes helm at ACT Property Council
Sydney Morning Herald, 7 November 2016
Ms Cirson said her appointment as ACT Property Council executive director was recognition by the council that it wanted a closer relationship with government at a crucial time for commercial property developers in Canberra. Read here.
Real Estate and Property Services Industry Reform Paper
Kiama Independent, 7 November 2016
The president of the Illawarra Property Council has welcomed proposed state government reforms which would see tougher training standards for real estate agents as well giving Fair Trading more power to police rogue agents. Read here.
Inner west council stash $136 million in developer funds that should be spent on projects to meet increased density
The Daily Telegraph, 7 November 2016
Property Council NSW boss Jane Fitzgerald warned councils that developer contributions should not be used as “a slush fund”. “Developer contributions contribute to the price of new homes and that means those levees are adding dollars to the cost of property in the inner west,” Ms Fitzgerald said. Read here.
Apartment projects on wane in September but levels to build up
The Australian, 3 November 2016
Property Council of Australia policy director Glenn Byers said the weak result showed the state and federal governments needed to work together to ensure the supply of new residential property remained strong to help ease the housing affordability problem. [Pay wall] Read here.
Queensland star postcodes revealed as experts warn of a southern housing bust developing
The Courier Mail, 3 November 2016
Many developers have slammed on the brakes though, with the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics building approvals data, out yesterday, showing Queensland numbers plunged by about a third already over the year (-31,5 per cent) with an -11.7 per cent backpedal in September alone. Property Council of Australia’s Glenn Byres said it was telling that approvals fell in three eastern seaboard states “after unveiling new taxes on foreign investment”. Read here.