HomeBuilder scheme brings opportunity for Barossa businesses, home owners

Russell Doecke with owner/operator of Saxony Building, Luke Doecke have welcomed the additional opportunities the HomeBuilder scheme will offer.

Those who have already started planning their home renovations or build of a new home are likely to benefit more from the HomeBuilder programme, recently announced by the Federal Government and designed to drive economic activity in the residential construction sector.

Already a week into the new scheme and Saxony Building at Mount McKenzie have received interest from those looking to take advantage of the offer to secure the services of the Barossa based business.

Lisa Doecke of Saxony Building welcomed the initiative but added timing is important.

“People need to be pretty well in the stage of signing a contract if they are looking at a new home or large extension to a home,” said Lisa.

“What takes the time is the planning, engineering and Council approvals which can take months and months.”

Lisa said it is important to secure a builder that is happy to undertake the work within their time frame because due to stipulations, the work needs to start within three months of signing the contract.

“It is important that they can fit in with your schedule,” said Lisa.

“What people don’t understand is the $750,000 is the limit for a new home and that also takes into consideration the value of the land.

“If you want an extension you have up to $1.5m which includes the value of the land and the renovation.”

Lisa said people initially saw positives with the HomeBuilder initiative but it wasn’t long before they discovered the limitations.

“For a new project home, for a local builder who works with local businesses, you would have needed to start the process before now,” said Lisa.

“We have had some people contact us and wanted to fit in as much as they can in $150,000.”

With wet areas being a costly exercise, Lisa suggested an internal renovation that doesn’t require Council approval is something to consider.

Lisa and husband, Luke said the scheme is good for the industry and would help to keep people employed. 

However, they have had a chance to look over it since the announcement was made.

“Once we delved a little bit deeper we thought it was a disadvantage to us being a custom builder and rural,” said Lisa.

Lisa said for those looking to keep things simple they’d benefit but also stressed the importance of not rushing into a build.

“When you do, you can make quick decisions that may cost you more,” said Lisa.

“People have until the end of this year to sign a contract. We have made contact with our clients that are in the planning stage to have a look at it but it is up to the individual to make the application themselves.”

HomeBuilder applicants will be subject to eligibility criteria, including income caps of $125,000 for singles and $200,000 for couples based on their latest assessable income. 

A national dwelling price cap of $750,000 will apply for new home builds, and a renovation price range of $150,000 up to $750,000 will apply to renovating an existing home with a current value of no more than $1.5 million.

The initiative aims to increase residential construction and help to fill the gap in construction activity expected in the second half of 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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