A new collaboration between family-friendly estate The Wedge in Wellard by Monument and affordable first homebuyer specialist HomeStart has put weight behind the ‘cheaper to buy’ offering by creating new 3-bedroom x 2-bathroom house and land packages priced from just $325k*.
A range of beautifully designed homes on specially sized lots within the established area of Wellard is estimated to cost owners around $263 per week, compared to Wellard’s median three-bedroom house rental average of $390 per week recorded in June 2021.
Mr John Wroth, Director of Monument parent company M/Group, believes the packages have hit a new record for affordability in Perth and will mean that homeowners do not have to compromise on quality.
“Perth’s rental vacancy rate is disturbingly low and unlikely to improve for some time, even if you do find a decent rental, you are going to be paying premium prices for it. The opportunity we are putting on the table for families and first home buyers is one that will give them the security of owning their own home as well as the benefit of living in a place that offers great amenity,” he said.
“I believe these prices are groundbreaking and will be a welcoming option to those struggling to get a foot on the property ladder before rents and house prices rise further and while interest rates remain low.”
The Wedge is a boutique estate located just 35-minutes from Perth, around the corner from shops and transport, and in between the ocean and freeway.
It is surrounded by stunning natural bushland with a new childcare centre under construction, a completed park and playground, plus a Primary and Secondary school next door. Some 50% of lots within the estate have sold out and a family community is emerging.
The homesites earmarked for the house and land packages are well-located within the estate and sized to accommodate the spacious homes with open plan family area and integrated alfresco.
“Demand has definitely increased for customised house and land packages on specialty-sized lots, and many are surprised at just how much they can actually receive thanks to our designs. Moving into a brand-new home is a fantastic way to take a first step into the property market and being so centrally located is a bonus,” HomeStart’s Brendan Fowler said.
The home designs are single story with 6-star energy rating for continued cost benefits. The homes feature open-plan living, a main bedroom with ensuite and walk-in-robe, fully enclosed double garage with rear access, paving to driveway and alfresco, and a Lifetime Structural Warranty.
“We have worked really hard to develop affordable homes in this fast-paced or inflated market and remain one of the only developers providing this level of value,” Mr Wroth continued.
“Of course, the opportunity is limited so we encourage anyone who has had their fair share of knock-backs from the rental market to take this option into consideration. It’s a wonderful way to leave the rental cycle and we would love to welcome you into our community where home is made simple.”
To find more about The Wedge at Wellard visit www.thewedgewellard.com.au or call Damyn Strang on 0434 070 654 and for more information on the HomeStart House & Land packages call 9231 4567 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Adapting Our HeritageRead more
What are some of the biggest advantages for the development industry in undertaking adaptive reuse, especially when compared to demolishing and starting with a new design?
It was actually Perth’s ‘knock down and rebuild’ mentality some two decades ago that motivated my business partner and I to start our company.
At the time we witnessed the constant dilapidation of magnificent structures throughout the City to make way for bland ‘cookie-cutter’ builders, with no foresight for the visual impact or surrounding aesthetics.
We believe the development industry has a responsibility that extends far beyond built structure. It’s about maintaining the integrity of our streetscapes and understanding that the built form is something that is enduring and plays a significant role environmentally and culturally.
Adapting heritage form for modern-day use captures a story from the past and creates a unique and unreplaceable space, and this makes good sense socially and commercially.
What are some of the biggest challenges involved with the process?
Certainly, the biggest challenges when taking on an adaptive reuse project are those that can’t be immediately identified. This is largely the reason why so many developers have historically shied away from taking them on.
While X-ray technology has improved our capacity to assess a building’s structure, in most cases issues are only uncovered during the development process, which can impact significantly on the budget.
It is an incredibly rewarding challenge to explore ways of introducing modern day requirements into early design, when items such as electricals, plumbing and energy efficiencies had not been a consideration during construction historically.
We introduced a false floor methodology in our Heirloom building to accommodate services in order to maintain the ascetics of the Jarrah beams and exposed timber throughout.
Do you think the process of adaptive reuse is undertaken enough in Western Australia? If not, why not and what more can be done to encourage it?
We have come a long way from the early days when buildings were deliberately left so derelict that demolition was ultimately the only options. It is devastating to think of all the lost opportunities.
We are in different time now and I believe the industry is well across the intrinsic value heritage fabric can bring to a project and its surroundings.
That said, not every heritage property can be justified in a competitive marketplace, and returns need to be factored into each project. It is unquestionably more expensive to take on heritage work and navigate the development limitations.
Financial and process incentives would certainly compensate the developer and encourage more work in this area.
Of the projects you have worked on, from an adaptive reuse basis, which is your favourite project and why?
Without question, “Heirloom by Match” in Fremantle holds such significance as a community icon with an incredible depth of history. Being able to reactivate this site for modern-day use after so many decades of deteriorations truly an honour, and our success in retaining over 85% of the heritage fabric is an incredible achievement by my team.
However, “Home” in Perth represents a real turning point for adaptive reuse in Perth. We were more or less the only company taking on projects of this magnitude at the time and it really allowed us to demonstrate what could be achieved.
When we started this project, the building was locked up and covered in graffiti. Our work uncovered an architectural masterpiece that was nothing short of impressive. It created streetscape presence that helped to shape the west end of Perth’s CBD.
After its opening, there was a real industry shift towards our cause. I will always be very proud of our work on that property.
Aside from the heritage/historical significance of utilizing existing buildings, what other benefits to adaptive reuse are there?
While there is a a great deal of benefit affiliated with historical significance and heritage features, any project must also make financial sense.
We find that people ultimately buy into these projects for their uniqueness. There is no comparison to a modern building and these factors allow for a pricing model that can adequately cover additional development costs.
The boutique nature of these projects mean they hold a strong market value, and as consumers are are buying a piece of history, it is perceived as priceless.
Any further comments you would like to make around adaptive reuse and its benefits for the Western Australian development industry?
I truly believe Perth now fully realised the value of our heritage structures.
The City is extremely fortunate to have such a strong Heritage Council body to partner with developers and ensure each project has the best outcome, and local government stakeholders appreciate the significance of our work within their jurisdiction.
The level of collaboration required to bring these projects to fruition cannot be understated.
Comments for UDIA attributed to Lloyd Clark, Managing Director of Match parent company M/Group
Read UDIA’s full article here
A Wall of Cash is Coming: This is How to Invest ItRead more
With the wall of cash dividends hitting investors’ accounts over the coming months due to surging iron-ore prices, there is one question top of mind: What to do with the cash?
Industry analysts are predicting the dividend windfall from BHP Limited (ASX: BHP), Rio Tinto (ASX: RIO) and Fortescue (ASX: FMG) could top $65 billion over the year, in addition to the $7 billion from the Big 4 banks. With the current cycle of almost zero cash rates, the race is on to find sustainable income-producing investments.
Amid the noise of an exciting investment market, there are solid, high-yielding investment opportunities in the periphery of the action that offer both security and good returns.
How to find property assets that stack up
Australians love affair with property has become even more pronounced since the initial shock of the COVID-19 pandemic panic set in. We are both staying and investing locally. House prices from the east coast to the west coast have sky-rocketed and commercial and industrial assets are in hot demand with a raft of banks and non-bank lenders ready to lend money.
The level of appetite and competition in this space is highlighted in Stamford Capital’s latest Debt Capital Markets Survey, which tracks lender sentiment and the latest trends in the real estate debt market.
Based on responses from over 100 lenders, including banks, non-banks and private financiers, the survey found a “dramatic swing from the bleak outlook a year ago” when capital dried up, leverage levels decreased and lending criteria tightened.
Carried out in March this year, the survey found lending appetites were back at pre-COVID levels with increasing deal competition from a growing pool of non-bank lenders expected to compete more heavily on price and force down interest margins.
Private capital chasing higher yields in the booming property market has seen a large increase in the number of new non-bank lenders offering construction and investment loans this year.
While the pool of debt is available, and still relatively cheap, the trick is trying to find the property assets that stack up. This is where an experienced property fund manager can sort the wheat from the chaff. Sourcing the asset is one thing, knowing if you are paying too much is another. Selectivity is the key.
Mining the macro and geographical factors
Looking at macro factors and geographical location is also vital. Where are the industrious activities happening? City or regional, coastal/ports or mining? The mining industry for example has seen a significant uptick since June 2020. Mining exploration in Western Australia is almost at record levels and the capital raising pipeline is strong.
The Australian Securities Exchange notched up 42 IPOs in mining-related businesses over the past 12 months to April 2021 and despite the Covid-19 pandemic, is well ahead of other hotspots including Toronto, with 28, and London with two, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
With the recent news of a $500 million investment in the Kalgoorlie-Goldfields region by Lynas Rare Earths, along with a $400 million commitment from Evolution Mining (ASX: EVN) for the acquisition of a collection of Northern Star (ASX: NST) mines on the western side of Kalgoorlie, and BHP recently revealing it has struck a deal to supply nickel from the region to Tesla, the region is experiencing a level of sustainable economic activity not seen for many years.
So, it appears on a macro level, locations near to, and supporting the burgeoning mining exploration and production sector seem sensible. Resources need resources, including human capital. But accessing large commercial and industrial assets in those regions is not an option for many individual investors.
A golden commercial opportunity
It takes a skilled property fund manager to find the asset and assess it on its merits.
In the case of commercial property, is it tenanted, to whom, and for how long (WALE)? What are the costs associated with acquiring and managing the property? What is a fair acquisition price and how will it be funded? If everything stacks up, then a due diligence process will follow. Lenders are appointed and capital is raised (normally to the tune of 50% debt funding by banks/lenders and 50% by investors).
For both groups, returns need to be negotiated. And in the case of capital provided by investors, a yield or distribution based on the rental income received will be passed on monthly or quarterly, for the life of the investment, which usually stretches to between five and seven years.
Perth-based M/Group has recently gone through that process on a macro and financing level and plans to invest in a large format, fully leased 6000 square-metre commercial asset in Kalgoorlie, Western Australia forming the Boulder Road Property Trust.
In the heart of the Goldfields, Kalgoorlie is home to 30,000 people, swelling to 40,000 in boom times. With three national tenants locked in for a WALE (Weighted Average Lease Expiry) of 8.08 years, the fund is targeting monthly distributions to wholesale investors of 8% pa for a period of seven years (unless the asset is sold prior and capital returned). That’s 7.5% higher than the current cash rate. Importantly, the tenants are high quality and essential to the locals and the resource sector – RSEA, Autobarn and Heatleys.