What a difference a Federal Election result makes.

Return to confidence

An unprecedented return to confidence in the property market has followed the unexpected 2019 election outcome. If architects are seen as the barometer for the construction industry, the election result that no-one predicted has provided the stimulus for property developers and investors to push ahead with projects awaiting an LNP election outcome. In Robert Gottliebsen’s opinion piece in The Australian on Thursday 23 May 2019 titled “Bullet Dodged and Stars Aligned”, he observes “Everywhere there is a feeling of incredible relief and in due course that relief will be reflected in confidence”.

A quick flip

Any business owner or employer I’ve spoken to since the election has felt the same way. What has surprised a lot of businesses in our industry however, is the speed of the turnaround. The “perfect storm” of the credit squeeze following the Banking Royal Commission late last year, the usual downturn in activity across the festive season and the inevitable “let’s wait and see what happens with the election”, has meant that it has taken until June for this year to gain any real momentum and its all about confidence. In a recent meeting with a client, I asked “…you’ve had this property for a long time, why develop now?” His quick answer was simple and direct “…I was waiting to make sure Labour didn’t form government in Canberra”. What better proof do we need of the impact of the outcome?

Shop Work Home

What is equally interesting for us is the number of new clients we have managed to attract over the last few months and the range of sectors in which they successfully operate. This confidence is also evident in our existing clients and across our core sectors and markets. Our retail work continues to flourish with an increased focus on neighbourhood centres and integrated developments, with uses including child care, swim schools, medical and allied health services, fuel and fast food. We are proud to announce further work for our team in the aged care sector with detailed planning discussions around a new 120 bed development in North Brisbane.

Our residential expertise continues to be highly regarded with our ability to deliver designs across the range from short stay accommodation to owner occupier prestige apartments and everything in between. Our reputation for efficient, economic and functional apartment design has provided us with the opportunity to fill a niche in a frustrated market and provide solutions for several residential projects which would otherwise have not proceeded without a pragmatic approach to good design outcomes. This ability to design to a market and within a budget is based on a wealth of team experience and a willingness to work with clients and their builders to achieve the best results, quite often within an existing development approval.

Maybe one day, rather than listening to marketing agents advocating for a “rock star architect” name to attach to a project, clients will see the greater benefit in architects who care about their needs and their projects, not about elevations of dubious merit and plans that don’t work or can’t be sold.

And another thing….

In preparing this article, I reflected on a previous article written in the lead up to the previous federal election…. Those who are curious, can read more here….