Parkside Group director Peter Tapiolas outside their Cosgrove Development. Picture: Alix Sweeney
Parkside Group director Peter Tapiolas outside their Cosgrove Development. Picture: Alix Sweeney

North Queensland land sales going gangbusters

Townsville is set for a home building boom on the back of grants of up to $45,000 for buyers.

But whether the city has enough land which can be developed in the time frame set by government has prompted some to call for an extension so people can capitalise on the windfall.

Developers, agents and builders have told the Bulletin the impact of stimulus measures announced by the Federal and State Governments has been very significant with display homes now packed with people and buyers rushing to secure blocks of land.

While details of the schemes are still being finalised, eligible first home buyers in regional areas like Townsville can access $45,000 towards the building of a home, while non-first home buyers can access $30,000.

 

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The $25,000 HomeBuilder federal component is available for contracts entered between June 4 and December 31.

The sales agents for Highland Gardens, Pinnacle Views, Hampton Grove and Hillside Gardens, Ray White Kirwan, said there had been strong inquiry across all four Townsville developments since the stimulus measures were announced.

Ray White Kirwan principal Nicky Faulks said demand was coming across the board from first home buyers, large families and those seeking acreage properties.

Ray White agent Craig Currie said he had sold or placed under contract most of the 20 lots that had been available in one development, Highland Gardens, in two weeks and tipped the busiest construction boom seen in the city in over a decade.

Parkside Group director Peter Tapiolas outside their Cosgrove Development. Picture: Alix Sweeney
Parkside Group director Peter Tapiolas outside their Cosgrove Development. Picture: Alix Sweeney

Mount Margaret sales manager Rod Tome said the impact of the stimulus measures had been "huge" with 17 sales of their blocks over the past two weekends and a decision to bring forward more land for development.

Mr Tome said the demand would put industry players and financiers "under the pump" and said he hoped the Federal Government would extend the date for eligibility.

"If they did, we would be able to satisfy a lot of young couples," Mr Tome said.

Hampton Grove spokesman John Galloway said they had lodged an application with the Townsville council this week to develop the next two stages of their Mount Louisa development after sales had spiked over the past two weeks.

"(The grants) have certainly provided the impact we needed to bring forward those purchase decisions that people have probably been sitting on during this pandemic," Mr Galloway said.

North Shore project manager Andrew Astorquia said the level of inquiry and sales had spiked at the development with demand coming across the board for its different sized lots. "It's very positive. It keeps the industry going, it keeps tradies employed and provides an economic boost that might not have happened," Mr Astorquia said.

Mr Astorquia said they probably did not have enough land available "right now" but that they had just released sites and were just starting construction of a new stage.

He said there would be pressure on the industry professionals and the council to ensure the approvals and the work could be done in the time frame set by government but believed it was "all achievable"."The professionals have to do their job," Mr Astorquia said.

But Peter Tapiolas, a director of Parkside Development, which has projects including Greater Ascot and Cosgrove, said potential buyers should move quickly to secure land sites. He also backed calls for the period when the grants were available to be extended.

Mr Tapiolas said the grants were a "windfall" for the industry after builders and developers had been "sitting on their hands" for so long but that the difficulty would be the shortage of developed land.

"I would say that within a week or two there might be little developed land left where people can take advantage of the stimulus," Mr Tapiolas said.

Originally published as RUNNING OUT: Land sales going gangbusters in Townsville


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