Australia markets open in 1 hour 37 minutes

    +37.90 (+0.48%)

    -0.0013 (-0.21%)
  • ASX 200

    +36.50 (+0.48%)
  • OIL

    -0.10 (-0.12%)
  • GOLD

    -3.00 (-0.13%)
  • Bitcoin AUD

    +3,042.88 (+3.19%)
  • CMC Crypto 200

    +426.14 (+48.12%)

‘Unrealistic’: Housing target under threat

A shortage of tradies could threaten Australia’s housing targets. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Dan Peled

It will need to be “raining tradies” to meet Australia’s gutsy housing targets, an expert has said.

The Albanese government has pledged to build 1.2 million homes in the next five years, but in order to meet that goal an extra 90,000 construction workers are required in the next three months.

Master Builders chief executive Denita Wawn said they “desperately” needed more hands on deck.

A further 90,000 tradies are needed in the next three months to secure the housing target for the next five years. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Glenn Campbell

“It sounds unrealistic – it probably is,” Ms Wawn said on Sunrise.

“But I think this figure just really reflects the difficulty that we’re going to have if we don’t resolve the tradie shortage in meeting the agreed target of 1.2 million homes over five years.


“The clock starts ticking on July 1 and we’ve got a huge, huge issue to resolve and we’re working hard to try and see if we can at least alleviate it by a certain number, but I don’t think we’ll ever meet 90,000.”

She said three key areas would need to be focused on.

“One is migration, and we know that there are a large number of tradies in this country that can’t get their licences recognised, it’s too expensive and too cumbersome for them,” she said.

“We’ve got to focus on those who are currently in the country, but their skills aren’t recognised.

“The second area is training more Australians – we really are focusing on particularly school leavers, but also those who want a career change to look at a trade as an opportunity.

“Thirdly, we as an industry need to make sure that we’re not only retaining the current tradies, we’re actually calling back the ones that have maybe decided enough is enough.”

Ms Wawn said it was “really, really difficult at the moment”.

To combat the looming crisis, developers are trialling a new approach from the likes of Japan, Scandinavia and Germany.

Minister for Industry and Science Ed Husic said they would take a serious look at modular housing. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Martin Ollman

Housing giant Mirvac is introducing the concept of modular housing to Australia, a feat able to reduce the construction of homes to be watertight within 12 weeks.

The construction of the housing is also not exposed to supply chain shortages, including disruptions from Australia’s characteristic weather events.

Minister for Industry and Science Ed Husic said for the first time, governments were working together to take a “serious look” at modular housing.

An artist’s impression of the two-storey shipping container home offered by Cube Modular Housing. Picture: Supplied
An artist’s impression of the two-storey shipping container home offered by Cube Modular Housing. Picture: Supplied

“Other countries have got their act together on modular housing and are seeing great jobs and great new homes – we want to be able to do that right here on shore,” Mr Husic said.

State and federal governments are aiming to scrap regulations and barriers to construction and finance under new modelling, set to be announced later in the year.