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Builders back proposed Home Building Grants

Media Release 

Master Builders NT strongly backs the Country Liberal Party’s (CLP) new home ownership policy.

“The CLP’s Home Grown Territory grants scheme will deliver very positive outcomes should it be implemented,” Master Builders NT Chief Executive Ben Carter said.

“These grants would help counter negative sentiment about the Territory as a place to invest, stimulate demand for home building, drive economic growth and help make the Territory competitive against other jurisdictions as place of opportunity,” he said.

“Master Builders NT has called for a nation-leading suite of home building grants because we are not dealing with a normal cyclical downturn in residential building, we are dealing with what is forecast to be among the worst years on record for new home building,” Ben Carter said.

“There is forecast to be less than 270 new homes constructed in 2023-24, a fall of 55 per cent on the previous year. Housing construction is a major indicator of economic performance and so this is a major warning sign for the Territory economy,” he said.

“The CLP’s home building grants scheme would provide a step up to support more Territorians into home ownership, but it is also structured to maximise economic growth and jobs by encouraging those looking for a fresh start in the Territory to also build a new home not just first home buyers,” Ben Carter said.

“Faced with an historic low in in the levels of home building and home ownership this policy is a recognition that a substantial intervention is required by government to arrest the decline in private investment hitting the Territory economy,” he said.

“Master Builders backs the policy because it would play an important role in maximising the economic benefits of the forecast $6.2 billion in defence investment by the Australian and US Departments of Defence in the next five years and subsequent defence spending foreshadowed by the Australian Government in it’s National Defence Strategy and accompanying Integrated Investment Plan,” Ben Carter said.

“Not only do we need a major increase in housing to accommodate the thousands of workers needed to deliver defence projects, but the Territory must be the most attractive place to purchase or build a new home so that we can attract these workers to stay and put down roots as new members of the Territory community,” he said.

“With the growing strategic importance of northern Australia for national security, the Northern Territory has the opportunity to become a defence hub for the Australian, US and other allied militaries. We need an increase in private sector housing and opportunities for home ownership to ensure that can compete for this opportunity against other centres in regional and northern Australia,” Ben Carter said.

“Making the Territory the most attractive and easiest place to live and to do business is vital to growing our population and building a stronger economy and construction sector into the future. Policies such as the CLP’s Home Grown home building grants scheme can play a major role in achieving this,” he said.

“Backing this policy fits squarely with Master Builders ‘policy not politics’ commitment to support election policies that will underpin a stronger Territory economy and a stronger construction sector,” Ben Carter said.