We’re all in this together.
Australia can’t escape the global political tensions, territorial ambitions, trade wars and power plays.
Our region has its fair share of turmoil – US, China, Hong Kong, India / Pakistan – we are feeling it too.
The RBA, having dropped interest rates to a record low – good for borrowers, bad for savers – (increased household debt, retirees in risky ventures) – is now thinking the economy may be improving, but QA (quantitative easing AKA printing money) may be ahead. “Ask the boss for a pay rise” is the latest message spooking the punters.
But the boss is nervous about the future and confused by employment law complexities.
The people don’t match the jobs
Employer organisations identify a skills crisis – vocational and technical education has been gamed, neglected and shunned, but with massive infrastructure construction forecast, these are the critical skills to lift Australian productivity and prosperity.
How many years will it take to change and catch up?
“Speed and Greed” – The building defects crisis
It’s a whole of property industry problem – 50 years in the making. Increased student intakes and graduates, continued fee cutting through cyclic downturns, low salaries for critical industry staff, and privatisation of building certification, quality and control.
At least all State Building Ministers have agreed on a national approach to the crisis. To date NSW (sinking, cracking and leaking buildings) has appointed a new Building Commissioner.
Cladding Safety Victoria, established to oversee state funded rectification works on high risk, flammable cladding, now has a CEO.
The ACT is introducing a Builders Code of Practice, part of a series of reforms to improve and enforce construction quality and methods.
While the blame game, the problems and losses of displaced residents play out, the property industry is adjusting to the changes and powering ahead.
Property Investment and Funds Management
The top end of the food chain is busy with takeovers, M & A activity, trading assets, remixing portfolios, enjoying tightening yields and showing interest in new asset classes.
High rise residential is largely on hold or being converted into new uses. Lack of development finance has sent several developers into administration.
Retirement Living & Aged Care
Small providers are being gobbled up by the funds and private, often foreign investors. The Royal Commission is reviewing quality of services and care – an owner or managers problem?
Rapid change in retail style, methods and shopper habits needs imagination and fortitude to keep up and stay ahead. Empty shops line suburban streets, shopping centre landlords are scrambling to reposition, remix, refurbish and green their assets.
Real Estate Agency / Property Advisory
Sales of non-residential assets have been strong; portfolio remixes a prime source of business. Eastern states residential sales are improving, increased confidence and interest in luxury apartments is robust.
Property Advisory is suffering from sharp hikes in Professional Indemnity Insurance costs, especially for those involved in valuation and building related advisory.
Building & Design Consultants
Oh Boy! Who’s not involved in the building quality crisis? There will be casualties, but with Australia’s growing population and Federal Government thrust into infrastructure construction, a long-term pipeline of work is ahead if the insurance problems can be sorted out and the worst allowed to fail.
Building, Construction & Housing
Can this market sector clean itself up, or are new government controls essential?
Making up for reputation loss, poor quality construction, risk shifting, subbie oppression, cosy contractor / union arrangements and IR problems will take time and persistence.
Finance, Corporate & Support
The back room has its own challenges – cybersecurity, AI (Artificial Intelligence) implementation and use, systems integration, legal and HR issues, platform provider problems and frustrated colleagues affected by non-performance.