WA property owners and investors have had a tight few years, but that hasn’t stopped them setting their expectations high for the new year.
According to Lino Iacomella, WA executive director for the property council of Australia, the top of the list is a turnaround in market sentiment backed up by real evidence of job growth to fuel demand for new homes and business premises.
“So now is the time to prepare for WA’s next growth cycle. In 2018 the property industry is expecting real progress on key policy reforms that will support WA’s growth, including modernising the state’s ageing strata laws, adopting uniform local planning regulations and the introduction of a plan to guide WA’s infrastructure needs to enable the construction of new precincts and places that WA needs to support future growth.”
“At the end of 2017 most of the market fundamentals for a revival were in place,” he shared. “WA property values are some of the most affordable in the country, interest rates remain at historic lows, an oversupply in housing was mostly soaked up, demand returned for new office space, and most importantly the development industry has a clear growth plan for Perth in the state Government’s METRONET public transport blueprint for the metropolitan area.”
He said that the only spoiler in the state’s growth equation is weak population growth. WA’s most recent annual increase was just 20,000 people despite historic annual growth of 45,000.
“But WA’s history shows we will track back to the average population growth levels as the economy expands, and job growth is sustained,” he assured. “There is early evidence this is happening in the traditional and new resources industries like lithium mining, a rapidly growing high-tech sector value-adding to the resources industry, and WA’s array of new hotel and tourism offerings.”