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Time to borrow more? - 1 August 2019
The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority recently finalised its revised guidance on serviceability assessment rates for lenders in relation to loan applications. APRA acknowledged that in the prevailing low interest environment, a serviceability rate of 7 per cent was higher than necessary for lenders to maintain sound lending practices. Lenders can now assess loan affordability based on the actual interest rate the lender will charge a borrower plus a buffer of 2.5 per cent.
Integrity laws - 1 August 2019
Master Builders welcomes the successful passage of the Ensuring Integrity Bill 2019 through the House of Representatives. The Morrison Government has been pursuing laws to provide greater integrity of federal registered union and employer groups, as well as their elected officials, despite strong opposition from Federal Labor. Master Builders Australia CEO Denita Wawn says the reforms mean real consequences for organisations acting like they’re above the law.
Executive Directors discuss Building Ministers’ Forum - 25 July 2019
After the success of Master Builders’ advocacy work regarding the outcomes from the Building Ministers’ Forum, Executive Directors from around Australia met this week to discuss the forum and further action required by state governments. Other areas of focus were training, education and safety to assist our members across the nation. Master Builders Australia has also been successful in securing funding for a mentoring program for women in our industry. Member associations across the nation, including WA, will be involved.
Small business meeting - 25 July 2019
This week Master Builders conducted an important boardroom breakfast meeting with Small Business Minister Paul Papalia and Small Business Commissioner David Eaton to discuss the changes to the Small Business Development Corporation Act and how it will affect the building industry. Our membership is largely comprised of small businesses, so we are keen to work with government on changes which benefit everyone. Further information will be provided as the consultation phase progresses.
Master Builders want governments to “Hit the go button on Infrastructure” - 18 July 2019
Master Builders has issued a press statement and continues to press the case for the fast-tracking of capital works projects and social infrastructure to support the building and construction industry in Western Australia. For this to occur we need state and federal governments to work together and cut red and green tape. Western Australia’s own, Ben Morton MP, Assistant Minister to the Prime Minister and Cabinet has been given the lead on removing regulatory bottlenecks so we have a meeting scheduled to discuss further.
Industry groups secure Australia-wide action on building regulation - 18 July 2019
After strong advocacy push by major industry peak bodies, including Master Builders Australia, the Federal Government along with state and territory governments have agreed to a nationally coordinated Australia-wide approach to implementing all the Shergold-Weir report recommendations. This has been a great success as the united advocacy has been broadcast across national newspapers including The Australian and other media platforms with MBA Chief Executive Officer Denita Wawn advocating for such action. Locally, Master Builders Western Australia has been working with and informing the WA State Government prior to the Building Ministers Forum on behalf of its members on the importance of supporting these recommendations.
ReddiFund turns 30 - 18 July 2019
Master Builders Association of Western Australia has been associated with ReddiFund since its inception and congratulates ReddiFund on its 30-year anniversary. As an important stakeholder, Master Builders represents employers on the board and continues to promote the fund that is open to all employers operating within the building and construction industry to join and make provision for their employees in the unfortunate event of redundancy.
Construction stakeholder talks - 11 July 2019
Executive Director John Gelavis has joined a select consultation group reviewing the Local Jobs Bill. The bill’s objective is to help build and diversify Western Australia’s economy by ensuring the benefits from projects within the energy, mining and construction sectors flow through to local businesses and create more jobs for West Australians. The bill intends to cover privately funded projects and public-private partnerships projects where the value of the project is $500million or more.
Easier access to home loans - 11 July 2019
The Australian Prudential Authority’s decision to relax its mortgage serviceability buffer will make it easier for new applicants to get home loans. The buffer required new borrowers to have the financial capacity to cope with a mortgage interest rate of at least seven per cent, which is much higher than current market rates. Dropping the restriction is expected to assist recovery in the home building industry.
Infrastructure fast track - 12 July 2019
Master Builders is lobbying both State and Federal governments to deliver major capital works programs. More shovel-ready infrastructure projects including civil and social infrastructure such as education and health facilities need to emerge to spur growth, create jobs and get the economy moving.
Jobs incentive - 11 July 2019
On July 1, Premier Mark McGowan launched the Jobs and Skills WA Employer Incentive which aims to increase the number of apprenticeships and traineeships across the state. The scheme will be funded through the redirection of payroll tax. Employers who have lodged a training contract for registration on or after July 1 will receive a base payment of up to $8500. Master Builders has raised concerns with the Department of Training and Workforce Development as well as Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery that employers can’t access the incentive if they are eligible to receive payments for their apprentice or trainee from the Construction Training Fund.
Metronet tax scrapped - 4 July 2019
Planning Minister Rita Saffioti has announced the State Government is dropping the planned levy for Metronet apartment developments to help pay for new rail infrastructure. The tax was first flagged in 2017 but Ms Saffioti said: “We assessed value capture options and have decided not to proceed with a model, to help support the local property and housing market.”
Interest rate drop - 4 July 2019
The Reserve Bank of Australia this week decided to reduce interest rates to 1 per cent. Master Builders called on the big banks to pass on the rate cut fully and immediately. The interest rate drop has come at a good time, alongside the WA Government’s housing stimulus, to help the WA economy get moving again. We are also calling for an acceleration of infrastructure works, to boost the beneficial effect.
Housing stimulus launch - 4 July 2019
The changes to the Keystart income limits came into effect on July 1 and will run for six months. Executive Director John Gelavis joined the Premier, Housing Minister and Treasurer for the launch this week. Master Builders proposed and promoted the stimulus to the WA Government on behalf of members and we are pleased to see it come to fruition.
School building work opportunities - 27 June 2019
Master Builders welcome the State Government’s investment of nearly $10million on upgrades at public schools in the 2019-20 financial year. This means work for builders to improve administration blocks, toilets and assembly areas at schools across metro and regional WA. Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery says the work will support the economy and create jobs.
Cladding and Canberra talks - 27 June 2019
Executive director John Gelavis has been in Canberra this week for the strategic meeting of Master Builders leaders from all states. Among the issues discussed were the troubles over flammable cladding, which are in the news across Australia. In Victoria, media outlets have reported that building activity could halt because higher risk ratings for cladding-affected buildings have left surveyors struggling to get insurance. In New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria registered building surveyors must have professional indemnity insurance without any exceptions. In Western Australia, surveyors may have exceptions but this leaves them open to risk.
Jobs and skills incentive - 20 June 2019
The Jobs and Skills WA Employer Incentive gives financial assistance to businesses employing an apprentice or new trainee and who lodge the contract for registration on or after July 1. The incentive is part of the State Government’s Our Priorities: Sharing Prosperity plan to create 150,000 jobs by 2023-24. The aim is boost opportunities by helping employers meet the costs of employing an apprentice or trainee.
Infrastructure WA moves ahead - 20 June 2019
The McGowan Government has passed the Infrastructure WA legislation. Master Builders is a strong supporter of this initiative, which is intended to promote long-term planning of major infrastructure projects by the WA Government based on public interest, rather than short-term political outcomes. The model is based on similar Federal and state government agencies.
GET YOUR NOMINATIONS IN - 16 August 2019Book Here
Nominate a young high achiever in the industry for either the Ric New Medal for Excellence (35 years and under) or the Ric New Rising Star Award (up to 25 years).
Housing Excellence Awards - Entries close - 23 August 2019Book Here
Entries for the 2020 Master Builders-Bankwest Housing Excellence Awards are now open. Submit your award winning projects by 23 August 2019.
Master Builders Golf Day - 6 September 2019Book Here
Have a ball at Master Builders Golf Day at the picturesque Maylands Peninsula Golf Course.
Diploma of Building and Construction - 12 September 2019Book Here
Looking to take the next step in your career? Enrol in the upcoming Albany intake for CPC50210 Diploma of Building and Construction (Building).
South West Awards - Entries close - 1 November 2019Book Here
Built an outstanding project in the South West region? Enter it into the 2020 Master Builders-Bankwest Building Excellence Awards.
Apprentice of the Year Awards - November 1Book Here
Support the next generation of your industry! Book a table for the 2019 Apprentice of the Year Awards and connect with young up-and-comers.