Local News Perth

$444m stimulus for housing sector

The McGowan Labor Government has announced a $444 million housing stimulus package in the wake of the COVID-19 virus and continued success in recovery from the virus.

With the national interest rate level at a rock-bottom 0.25%, the announcement is set to make the goal of owning their own home more achievable for Western Australians.

The housing stimulus package includes:

  • $117 million for $20,000 Building Bonus grants provided to homebuyers who sign up before December 31, 2020 to build new houses or purchase a new property in a single tier development (such as a townhouse) prior to construction finishing, creating 2,600 jobs;
  • $8.2 million to expand the 75 per cent off-the-plan transfer duty rebate, capped at $25,000, until December 31, 2020 to include purchases in multi-tiered developments already under construction;
  • $97 million to construct social housing dwellings and purchase off-the-plan units for supported housing programs;
  • $142 million to refurbish 1,500 existing social housing dwellings; and
  • $80 million for targeted maintenance programs for 3,800 regional social housing properties – including remote Aboriginal communities’ stock and subsidised housing for regional government workers.

The plan is scheduled for immediate rollout, and will run into 2020-21, providing tradespeople and building material suppliers with additional certainty about an ongoing pipeline of work.

Regional WA is also expected to enjoy a boost as the package includes a specific $80 million investment to fast-track a regional maintenance program.

Treasurer Ben Wyatt stressed the importance of the stimulus to the health of the Western Australian economy.

“The McGowan Government’s number one priority is repairing the economy and getting Western Australians back to work,” Mr Wyatt said.

“This significant housing package takes the total funding the State Government has so far committed to COVID-19 stimulus and relief measures to $2.3 billion.”

“The package will recharge our housing industry by bringing forward a pipeline of work, providing a boost to our economy and supporting jobs.”

Premier Mark McGowan also stressed the importance of the package and its intent to provide job security to those in the construction sector.

“This new major housing package will provide a much-needed boost to WA’s economy,’ Mr McGowan said.

“It will provide a pipeline of work for WA building companies and local tradies, like bricklayers, plumbers, carpenters and painters, as we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The social housing component will also go a long way to helping those in need, get into a quality home.”

McGowan also highlighted the Government’s fiscal management as a way that they have been able to deliver another stimulus package.

“As a result of our Budget management over the last three years, we have the flexibility to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and help support our local economy,” he added.

“WA’s residential building industry makes a significant contribution to our economy and community, so it’s important we help protect, support and create new jobs in this space.”

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